Undergraduate research is an exploration of a topic in an undergraduate program. It follows a well-developed structure to perform research; the scientific method.
While studying for my undergraduate degree, I was still questioning what I should focus on. I remember asking myself if I would rather focus on the health, animal, or plant sciences track. I ended up majoring in Education instead, but I took all the courses available in those three areas that the college interconnected within my major, so I graduated with a major in Education and a specialization in Biological Sciences (take a look at my transcript). Still fortunately, a professor reached out to me in my second year, offering an opportunity for undergraduate research in botany. This opportunity was a point mark in my life, and back then, I had no idea of its impact on my future.
I then completed three undergraduate research projects under the supervision of my mentor, Dr. Isabela Crespo. After the conclusion of the following projects, I presented the findings in poster showcases. The projects were (1) Morphology of Selaginellaceae species spores occurring in forest fragments of Minas Gerais, Brazil, (2) Morphology of Polypodiaceae spores occurring in the Rio Doce State Park, Minas Gerais, Brazil, (3) Diversity of mosses (Bryophyta) from the private natural heritage reserve (RPPN) Fazenda Macedonia, Minas Gerais, Brazil.
I am telling you this to show you that undergraduate research is very important and, in my case, opens doors for applying to a graduate school later. So, if you study at Valencia College (where I currently teach), take the opportunity to look after undergraduate research. Find more about it by clicking on the following link.