Student Involvement

San Diego State University prides itself on the quantity and quality of its research and creative activities. Undergraduates play a vital role in the success of faculty and graduate student research and creative activities, and students benefit enormously from their participation.

An inquiry or investigation conducted by an undergraduate student that makes an original intellectual or creative contribution to the discipline.

  • Enhances student learning through mentoring relationships with faculty
  • Increases retention
  • Increases enrollment in graduate education and provides effective career preparation
  • Develops critical thinking, creativity, problem solving and intellectual independence
  • Develops an understanding of research methodology
  • Promotes an innovation-oriented culture (source)
A good place to start is to identify an area of interest and then find a mentor in that area.

Highlighted students


Chase Whittaker, Class of 2018

Chase majored in political science and public health. During his time as undergraduate he conducted research in Zambia and subsequently set up a nonprofit to benefit underserved communities there and elsewehre. Learn more about Chase.


Katelyn Sileo, Ph.D

Katy is a 2017-18 public health doctoral graduate who spent a year conducting dissertation research in Uganda, looking at HIV in fishing communities. She is now a postdoctoral fellow at Yale University. Learn more about Katy.


Elena Arroyo and Madison Kennedy, Class of 2018

Elena and Madison were both undergraduates who took STEM seriously (physics and chemistry, respectively) and spent much of their undergraduate careers in the research lab. They are now both matriculating into the doctoral program of biological physics, structure and design at the University of Washington, Seattle. Learn more about Elena and Madison.