Excellence is a Given (Scholars)

Excellence is a Given
As a top-tier research university, the UO has a lot to offer high-achieving students like you. You’ll be joining a community of motivated, curious, and creative Ducks who can’t wait to get to the root of a problem. From climate-induced migration to artificial atom creation, UO students and faculty are tackling issues on every scale. So bring us your questions—we’ll put you on the path to finding the answers.
Designated by the Carnegie Foundation as one of
US universities with the "highest research activity"
Charity Woodrum

Majors: Physics
Hometown: Myrtle Creek, Oregon

Charity joined the race to find and detect gravitational waves as an undergraduate intern at NASA. Combing through a month’s worth of data from the Fermi Gamma-Ray Space Telescope, she dialed in to just four milliseconds to check for gamma ray bursts. Though she didn’t discover new gravitational data, she made waves of her own, and presented her work to top NASA scientists.

Excel in Your Field
Hard work deserves recognition. Challenge yourself and distinguish your degree with departmental honors.

Whether or not you’re enrolled in the Clark Honors College, you can earn honors through a number of departmental honors programs. Offerings and requirements vary, but generally include advanced upper division courses in your major and completion of a research project.

Majors with Departmental Honors
Eric Hammerschmith smiling into the camera wearing a dark shirt with blurred trees behind him
Eric Hammerschmith

Majors: Biology and Chemistry
Hometown: Eugene, Oregon

Researching infections caused by nematodes can be hard, because you can’t test on a person. The solution? Species 34, a worm that hitches a ride on fig-pollinating wasps without hurting them. For departmental honors, Eric joined the UO’s Phillips Laboratory. He worked to trick the worms into thinking they’re on a wasp. By isolating the worms based on their islands of origin, he helped further our understanding of parasitic species. “Signing up for departmental honors helped solidify what I wanted to do as a career,” Eric says. “It truly gave me hands-on experience in the joys and challenges of research.” Now, Eric’s ready to take on a master’s program, right here at the UO.

Clark Honors College

Small, discussion-based classes with other high-achieving students and faculty mentorship are the hallmarks of the Clark Honors College.

Honors College

Road to Discovery
Experiential learning makes classroom concepts come alive—so why should you have to wait until grad school to get started?

No matter how you get involved, research experiences help you explore and clarify your academic and professional goals, develop your critical thinking, and gain important workplace skills. We’ve invested in undergraduate research and creative scholarship across the spectrum, from funding to mentorship to awards and recognition.

Launch Pads to Research

Center for Undergraduate Research and Engagement: A central hub for Ducks interested in research, no matter the subject, offering advising, grants, fellowship programs, workshops, and showcase opportunities for students from any major.

Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program: Provides more than $200,000 annually in funding for faculty-mentored undergraduate research, along with resources and programs to connect students to research and creative scholarship experiences.

McNair Scholars Program: Propels motivated juniors and seniors toward earning PhDs through tuition support, research funding, application guidance, and more. This selective and rigorous program is specifically for either first-generation college students with financial need or members of traditionally underrepresented groups.

Office of Distinguished Scholarships: Guides students through the process of selecting and applying for the world’s most competitive and prestigious scholarly awards, including the Fulbright, Rhodes, Truman, and Marshall scholarships.


Building for the Future
The Phil and Penny Knight Campus for Accelerating Scientific Impact is already fueling growing opportunities in bioengineering, neuroengineering, and precision medicine.

Each year, the Knight Campus selects a handful of the most promising young students to be Knight Campus Undergraduate Scholars. The scholars are paired with research mentors—graduate students, postdocs, and faculty members—and immersed in a 12-month, comprehensive experience in Knight Campus-affiliated labs. The result? Researchers ready to tackle society’s most pressing scientific challenges.

Knight Campus