About the Program

2024 REU PROGRAM DATES:  June 2 – August 10.
Applications accepted December 15, 2023 – March 15, 2024.

This NSF REU Site is focused on Integrated Nanomanufacturing, a vital research area that involves nanoscale structures, devices, and systems. Integrated nanomanufacturing research supports a wide range of applications in biotechnology and healthcare, semiconductor electronics, computing, artificial intelligence, and energy. Participants will share in mentored research and discovery, exploring nanoscale systems, fabricating novel devices, and engineering new materials, while developing critical skills, awareness and confidence to advance in academics and research in the future.

Additional REU opportunities are available in areas of faculty strength, through these REU programs which are run alongside the REU INM Site:

  • NSF Engineering Research Center in Cellular Metamaterials (CELL-MET) REU at BU, FIU, and UM, focused on cardiac tissue engineering.
  • BU Photonics Undergraduate Research Summer Experience (PURSuE) positions for rising seniors with photonics and optics interest and experience who plan to apply for graduate study at Boston University.
  • BU Materials Science REU opportunities for students interested in materials and engineering.

Students may use our joint REU application to apply for any or all of these REU programs.

Interested undergraduate students from 2- and 4-year institutions are encouraged to apply for these opportunities to participate in authentic cutting-edge research projects at Boston University. Prior research experience is not required or expected. Students from historically excluded and non-traditional backgrounds are especially encouraged to apply, and preference will be given to highly motivated students who have not had access to comparable research opportunities through their home institutions.

Faculty and graduate student mentors from multiple disciplines will work with students to develop skills needed to excel in academic and industry research environments.  Research projects are interdisciplinary and may involve Biomedical, Mechanical, Electrical & Computer, and Materials Science Engineering; Physics, Chemistry, and Biology; and Photonics and Optics.  Applicants should be in their Freshmen, Sophomore, or Junior years studying engineering or science. 

Program Highlights

Students will gain authentic research experience in Boston University laboratories.  Most students will be placed in faculty labs, and some will be placed with local biotechnology and nanotechnology startup company labs housed in BU’s Business Innovation Center. Each participant will work on a defined project with guidance and mentoring from faculty and graduate students or startup R&D team.

In addition to their independent research projects, students will receive training and access to state-of-the-art equipment through the Site’s group training sessions in photolithography, 3D printing, scanning electron microscopy, transmission electron microscopy, and focused ion beam machining. Participants will attend lunch and learn seminars, professional development workshops, and laboratory group meetings, with multiple presentation opportunities during the summer including a final research poster session.


Four thematic interdisciplinary and interconnected research areas are represented in BU’s REU Site in Integrated Nanomanufacturing:

  1. Nanobiosystems – integrated nanosystems that generate, sense, and manipulate, with biomedical applications.
  2. Nanofabrication techniques that combine optical and electronic structures.
  3. Nanomaterials synthesis and characterization for nanotechnology applications.
  4. Nanophotonics applications involving microscopy, optoelectronic devices, and sensors.

These complementary themes align with core strengths in BU’s integrated nanomanufacturing research program.  In addition, the Site will engage innovative nanotech companies resident in BU’s Business Innovation Center to serve as mentor hosts for a select group of REU participants who express a preference for work involving Nanotechnology translation.

NOTE: Student participants in NSF-funded REU programs must be U.S. citizens, U.S. nationals, or permanent residents of the United States.

REU INM Program Director: Professor Xin Zhang

Program Features:

• $7,000 stipend
• Free on-campus housing
• Travel reimbursement up to $800 per participant

APPLY for any or all of these REU opportunities here: http://www.bu.edu/photonics-reu/application/