Work in Progress: NSF IRES - Interdisciplinary Research in Korea on Applied Smart Systems (IRiKA) for undergraduate students

Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date



Interdisciplinary Research in Korea on Applied smart systems (IRiKA) for Undergraduate Students is an NSF International Research Experiences for Students (IRES) program that provides a cohort of five US undergraduate students per year with the opportunity to conduct research for eight (8) weeks at Seoul National University (SNU), Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology and Ewha Womans University in Korea. The purpose of this program is to engage undergraduate students in interdisciplinary research, help them develop a global perspective on collaboration, and motivate them to pursue a career in STEM research. Over the lifetime of this 3-year project (2019-2021), the participating institutions will have a cohort of 5 students every year for a total of 15. The unifying research theme of IRiKA is smart systems with the subtopics of sensors, emerging electronics, and materials & process development. The theme leverages previous, ongoing, and new collaborations between the three US-based lead investigators and the Korean partner institutions. In addition to lab work and weekly cohort meetings to discuss progress, IRiKA students have the opportunity to visit Korea's government research institutions and global leaders in the tech industry such as Samsung, LG, and Hyundai and engage in cultural experiences. IRiKA includes a series of professional development sessions on research mentorship and science communication for both US participants and Korean partners. In this Work-in-Progress paper, the three US-based lead investigators report and reflect on the first year of the IRiKA program, which ran from June 2019 to August 2019. The investigators are currently analyzing data collected from the Summer 2019 cohort. In response to the preliminary findings, adjustments have been made for the Summer 2020 program. Summer 2020 applicant data collection has been completed. Due to the coronavirus pandemic, Summer 2020 program was cancelled.

Publication Source (Journal or Book title)

ASEE Annual Conference and Exposition, Conference Proceedings

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