Computational Astronomy and Physics (CAP) Summer REU Program

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Who: Participating students should be rising juniors or seniors who will be age 18 or over by March 1, 2014. Students should also be U.S. citizens, nationals, or permanent residents. At least a little previous programming, scientific computing, and/or relevant coursework is recommended.

What: Full-time summer research experience including joint computing seminars and social activities, plus an individualized project working in a UNC research group. Hands-on seminars cover mathematical modeling, Fourier methods/wavelets, visualization, Monte Carlo simulation, high-performance parallel programming, real-time instrument control, python scripting, and analysis with Mathematica. Individual student research projects span a wide range of astronomy and physics subfields, with opportunities from beginner to advanced levels in computing. Students are also coached on data display and presentation skills for poster and talk sessions, as well as on preparing for and applying to graduate school.

When: May 27 – August 2, 2014

Where: UNC Chapel Hill Physics & Astronomy Department. Housing will be provided, along with up to $500 toward travel to Chapel Hill and a $5000 summer stipend. Chapel Hill is located in the vibrant Research Triangle area of North Carolina, with urban amenities surrounding a lovely campus and beautiful mountains and beaches a short drive away.

Why: Gain research experience and professional skills from a fun and challenging summer program with a computational theme.

How: Link to the application page. Applicants will need to complete an online form and provide an essay and transcript in pdf format (an unofficial transcript is okay for now but must be replaced with an official one if the student is accepted). Students must also arrange for two letters of recommendation. The deadline for all materials including recommendation letters is Feb. 1. Rolling admissions will begin March 1.

Questions: Contact capprogram@unc.edu for more information.

Note to Local Students: There are many other opportunities for summer research. Visit the UNC Physics and Astronomy undergraduate research page for more information. We also encourage UNC students to cover all bases and apply for UNC SURF and/or NASA NC Space Grant fellowships. These deadlines are typically in late February.

We learned a lot and had a great time last summer! Here are some of the highlights:

A student at the weekly program lunch with her mentors. Two students working hard in the computer lab.
Interactive tutorial. Hands-on at the Remote Observing Center.
Midsummer poster presentation. Midsummer poster presentation.
Students listen to a seminar presentation. Interactive tutorial on computer visualization.
CAP participants ham it up between final presentations. Student giving his final presentation.
Presentation of the CAPstone award at the banquet. Can you handle it?