How to Apply



The YouTube playlist above walks you through each step of the application process.

Application Requirements

Students interested in applying to Maryland Sea Grant’s REU summer program are required to sign up and log into our internship portal to submit the following information:

  • Applicant information
  • Courses during the spring semester
  • Summary of your research interests
  • Short answer questions
  • Resume
  • Transcripts (unofficial undergraduate transcripts released to student acceptable, electronic PDF or hard copy)
  • Contact information for one recommender

All application components should be submitted through our online application portal.

Applicants will be notified in early April regarding their final status.  Per National Science Foundation rules, students are not required to accept or reject an offer before March 15th. If you have any questions or concerns regarding your status, please contact Dr. Michael Allen, Associate Director for Research and Administration,

Due February 13, 2024


Completing the Application Process

Written Questions

Your written answers provide the selection committee an idea about your research interests, background, and appropriateness for the program. This is your opportunity to distinguish yourself from the other applicants. It allows the committee to get to know you on a more personal level. Remember, since this is an important part of your application, don't leave it until the last minute.

Research interests (up to 300 words)

  • After reviewing our REU website and considering the types of research our REU supports (including past student projects and mentors), what research areas excite you most? What topics might you enjoy pursuing during a summer program? What prior training, coursework, or experiences will help you succeed in pursuing a summer research project?

Short answer questions (up to 100 words each)

  • What five courses have you taken that will be most relevant to this REU (names only, do not include course ID or credits)?
  • What are your career goals, and how will this summer REU program fit within your plan to achieve them?
  • Our REU program is dedicated to enhancing the diversity of future scientific communities, including and welcoming students that have not historically participated, and sharing our science with a broader audience. Please describe how you, based on your personal background and experiences (including social, cultural, familial, educational, or other opportunities or challenges), have contributed or will contribute to these goals during this REU or in your broader career.
  • (Optional) Is there anything else you would like the selection committee to know about you and your educational background?

Recommender Information

  • You must include the name and contact information for one recommender; you should contact this person BEFORE adding their contact information.
  • Providing your recommender's email address gives us permission to contact them immediately so they can use our online system to complete a recommendation form.
  • Your recommender will be asked to assess your academic abilities, potential as a researcher, communication abilities, and your ability to participate in and benefit from a research internship program in marine science.  We are not asking for and will not accept written letters of recommendation.
  • If you change a recommender or email address in our online system, it is your responsibility to inform the former referee that he or she will not be able to submit a reference.

Here are some tips on how to ask for a recommendation:

  • It's better to ask your professors or research mentors rather than, for example, family, friends, or your supervisor from a part-time job.  Your professors and mentors know more about your academic skills and your potential to excel in an REU program. Sometimes a TA or graduate student you are working with can provide a recommendation; however, it is almost always better for the course or laboratory professor to provide the recommendation.
  • When asking for someone to fill out our recommendation form, pick an individual who knows you well and who will be able to share what distinguishes you from other applicants.
  • Set up an appointment to meet with them in person. Be ready to talk about why you want this recommendation and what makes you a strong candidate for this program. If there is something you would like for them to mention, be sure to let them know.
  • Provide your recommender with copies of your resume, transcripts, and other application materials so that they understand your interests and background better.

Uploading Application Documents

Uploaded application materials (resume and transcripts) must be submitted in a PDF format.  To create a PDF, you will need Adobe Acrobat on your computer or you can use a free online PDF converter.  A trial version of Adobe Acrobat can be found at A free online PDF converter is available at PDF Online. Secure PDFs cannot be uploaded, so send them to us via email.

You may also send us materials as a PDF by e-mail to or by postal mail to:

5825 University Research Court Suite 1350
College Park, MD 20740
Attn: REU Program


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