REU Program 

The Cain Department of Chemical Engineering hosts a summer REU program. The 10-week program introduces students to the nature of research-oriented careers in chemical engineering with a special emphasis on entrepreneurship and how advances in basic science can be transitioned to practice. Participants are matched with faculty mentors based on student interest. Weekly seminars, field trips, and workshops provide students with research skill development and professional development topics such as ethics, patents, and intellectual property. Students will also receive direct mentoring on entrepreneurship from faculty who have successfully launched start-up companies and mentors from the LSU Innovation Park. Many events occur in conjunction with concurrent LSU summer undergraduate programs in physics, computational science, and biomedical science.


REC 2021 Group


    • You must be an undergraduate student in any academic year (freshman through senior) at the time of the summer program.
    • Participants must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents.

To Apply

Interested students should complete the online application form. As part of the application students are required to submit (1) a one-page personal statement, (2) a copy of their current college transcripts, and (3) 2-3 letters of support.



A substantial part of our evaluation will be based on your written letter. Please use this letter to describe the student’s qualifications for participating in an REU program. Items of particular interest include:

  • Scholastic aptitude;
  • Work ethic and maturity;
  • Motivation and aptitude for research;
  • Particular strengths or weaknesses;
  • Ability to flourish in group or semi-independent situations;
  • Whether you would choose to work with this student as a research mentor;
  • How well you know the applicant; and
  • Relative ranking of applicant among his/her peers.

Please submit a letter of support (preferably on departmental letter head) as a pdf document using this online letter submission portal. 


Submit Here


Confidentiality: Reference letters will be kept confidential to the extent allowed by the Family Educational Rights & Privacy Act. Students are asked on their application to waive the right to review reference letters, and are instructed to notify you if they do not waive this right. Only the REU program director, department faculty assisting with applicant evaluations, and the REU student’s faculty mentor will view the reference letters.

  • This is a paid program with a stipend of $7,000 to cover the cost of groceries, on- or off-campus dining, and other personal expenses.
  • REU participants will be lodged in university housing at no direct expense to you. The housing is apartment style, with individual bedrooms and a common living area and kitchen.
  • The apartments include utilities, internet, washer/dryer, and basic cable. Your roommates with be other participants in the CHE REU and other summer science programs.
  • Up to $450 per student is available to assist with travel expenses to get to LSU at the beginning of the program and to return to your home or school at the end of the summer.

March 31 → complete applications are due by this date (late applications will be accepted as space permits)

April 1 → acceptance notifications will be sent around this date

May 1 → matching of participants with mentors will be finalized; travel arrangements should be completed

May 27 → first day of summer program

August 3 → last day of summer program


REU Program Director

For all questions, please contact

Dr. Michael Benton – (225) 578-3056

Mailing Address
REU Program Director
LSU Chemical Engineering
3307 Patrick F. Taylor Hall
Baton Rouge, LA 70803

Program Funding

Our REU Program is funded by two awards from the National Science Foundation (NSF) – EEC 1852544 and EEC 1560305. We thank the NSF for their support.

NSF Logo; photo of Earth with "NSF" in center and gold people holding hands around it