Pomona’s RAISE research program to replace SURP for second consecutive summer

an academic building's hallway with glass windows and circular lights
Pomona College will again host the Remote Alternative Independent Summer Experience Program this summer. (Lucas Carmel • The Student Life)

Pomona College will again host the Remote Alternative Independent Summer Experience Program this summer in place of the Summer Undergraduate Research Program, citing “strong participation” last summer.

Pomona canceled SURP last March after students were sent home due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and uncertainty related to continuing COVID-19 restrictions forced the college to again cancel the program for this summer, according to Grants Administrator Amanda Jorgensen.

Through the RAISE program, Pomona will provide rising sophomores, juniors and seniors with a remote summer fellowship opportunity to undertake independent research projects or collaborate with faculty on research. Students currently on a leave of absence are not eligible to apply to the program, according to its website

Pomona said it will prioritize safety during the program, and “conceptualize projects” that can be run remotely for “maximum flexibility,” according to its website.

The college announced in early December that it intends to partially reopen its campus in March pending the launch of the Los Angeles County waiver program that would make it eligible for return. It remains to be seen if county guidance will allow students’ partial return, but RAISE will provide students opportunities for research “regardless of how events unfold,” according to Pomona’s website

At six weeks, the RAISE program will be one week longer than last summer and will provide students with a larger stipend. Because fundraising for the program is ongoing, it is yet unclear whether Pomona will grant more or fewer awards than last summer, Jorgensen said. 

Pomona will require students to work on their projects full-time during the six-week program. Students may not simultaneously engage in “other employment,” a summer stipend or an internship program at another college or university during the six-week period, according to its website

Students are also not allowed to participate in other Pomona-funded stipend or employment opportunities during the summer, including the Pomona College Internship Program.

Pomona will host an information session about the program Jan. 13, and its applications are due Feb. 12. Decisions are expected in early April.

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