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Arts and Sciences TURC Program

The foundation of the Tulsa Undergraduate Research Challenge is a partnership between a committed undergraduate student and a faculty mentor to pursue long-term research. In some cases the project involves students working as co-investigators with defined faculty projects, and in other cases the students are primary investigators, initiating their own projects with support from a faculty mentor. Generally these projects are of significant depth to span two or more semesters, sometimes extending beyond one or two years. Thus, students are encouraged to apply as early as possible, and applications will not be accepted past the first semester of the junior year.

TURC projects are designed as extra-curricular and are neither independent study courses nor senior or capstone projects.

The Mission of the Tulsa Undergraduate Research Challenge (TURC) program at The University of Tulsa is to:

  • support innovative research opportunities for promising undergraduate students under the guidance of faculty mentors;
  • encourage a lifelong commitment to active community service on the part of TURC students;
  • enrich the student experience by supporting outstanding research and community service projects across the entire curriculum; and
  • enhance the reputation of the University by supporting students who compete for national and international awards and who present their research and service projects at national and international forums.


Any A&S student is eligible to apply for participation in the TURC program. Applications are competitive and are reviewed by the Arts and Sciences TURC Admissions Committee which forwards recommendations to a university committee. Applications received during or after the student’s third semester prior to graduation (typically the second semester of junior year) will not be accepted.

Support for TURC participants

TURC provides summer funding in order to give students an opportunity to pursue their research during a time when they do not have to face the demands of a normal academic schedule. Summer support consists of a lump sum stipend dispersed on two dates during the summer (for details of summer stipends contact It is important to understand that this funding is limited, is not automatic for all TURC students and is competitively based on demonstrated progress. Please note as well that summer funding is available only to established TURC students, that is, students who have participated in TURC for at least one full semester and have made substantial progress on their projects.


Questions about the program should be directed to the Arts and Sciences TURC Director, Kristen Oertel, in the College of Arts and Sciences.