Tips for Students to connect to faculty-led research

At our most recent Working Group event, the Sexual & Reproductive Health symposium for on March 19th, 2021, 13 researchers shared insights on how to connect to research opportunities. We’ve compiled their tips here!

  • Building mentorship relationships is key! You can connect with faculty by taking their class and going to office hours. Don’t be afraid to send faculty emails and ask questions! You can build relationships during undergrad that can lead to post-graduate research opportunities and career mentorship.
  • Look up faculty/researcher profiles. If you find someone of interest, email them, establish a relationship (take their class, go to one of their talks, go to office hours), and be persistent! Let them know how you can contribute to the work they are doing. 
  • Most faculty are open to student requests. To make it easier to connect, find out what other students work with these faculty members – you can find this on their lab website – message their postdoc or graduate student first! Let them know what you’re interested in and start a conversation there. No one expects undergrads to have a fully developed set of skills, but being curious and conscientious are great qualities to have, so don’t feel intimidated if you don’t have a fully developed skill set.
  • Reach out to people and you never know who will connect you to someone else – the Sexual & Reproductive Health community in the Triangle is tight knit.  Outreach to people facilitates more than you might think on average. 
  • Commit to regularly searching for opportunities. 
  • Apply for research training programs (Duke has SRT, Bass Connections, Muser, and many others!)
  • If you have questions about the Duke Masters of Science in Global Health program, Maya graduated from the program in 2019, and since then has been working full time at Duke/DGHI. You can reach her at
  • If you’re interested in research post grad, you can contact Rimel at to get information on funding such as NIH Diversity supplements or post-baccalaureate research training.