How to contact faculty
As you would when applying for jobs, you will want to contact several faculty members. We recommend reaching out to 5-10 different labs, BUT do your homework!
- Identify people or programs that align with your research interests. You don’t have to stay within your department.
- Once you identify a lab you are interested in, spend time learning about their research. When the time comes you will sound genuine and well informed.
- Start sending emails and take time to read over the Do’s and Don’ts when emailing faculty about their research.
Writing your email
To: Professor’s work email address
Subject: Question about something related to their research
- Introduce yourself – major, year of study, etc. Tell them you are interested in learning more about research broadly, and their research specifically. If you know the faculty member, explain how.
- State why you are interested in research in general. What are your goals? What are your career interests and how do they relate to research?
- Indicate you have read about their research, and express particular interest. Talk about what you hope to learn as it relates to something you are interested in or have already learned.
- Close by asking if they would be willing to meet with you to talk about their research and for advice on how to get involved in research in general.
- Make it easy to schedule the meeting by listing a few time blocks that work with your schedule. If you feel up to it, you can include a copy of your class schedule below your signature.