2020 Summer Research Fellowship FAQ

2020 Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship Program


How is FoT-SURF unique in comparing to other summer research programs?

A: FoT-SURF is one of the very few programs actually combining cross-culture and in-depth research experiences. If you value cross-culture experiences or thinking about study abroad, this is the program you should consider first.

Why should I choose FoT-SURF program over other summer opportunities?

A: First of all, you have to decide whether summer research experience will benefit you in future career. If so, FoT-SURF is one of the many opportunities you can choose from. Then you can compare the PIs you are interested and other research opportunities you have. If these FOT-SURF PIs have better publication record, you should seriously consider applying. Even when they have similar publication record, please remember, FoT-SURF is one of the very few programs providing cross-culture experience.  

I am currently a senior and will be graduating right before the program starting date. Am I still qualified to apply?

A: Yes, we welcome graduating seniors to apply. As long as you are a current student during application process, you are welcome to apply and will be considered the same as other students.

I don’t have much of research experience. Will I be considered?

A: Yes. one of the purposed of the FoT-SURF program is to provide research experience together with cultural exchange. We encourage students regardless experience to apply. Remember, this is a training program. However, with basic laboratory skills will be preferred.

How does FoT select candidates?

A: We don’t select candidates. FoT will only screen for the qualifications. All qualified candidates will be forwarded to principal of investigators (PI) according to applicants’ preferences. PIs will then select their candidates.

I am a premed student and I knew a lot of similar program exclude premed students. Does FOT-SURF accept premed students?

A: We welcome premed students. As the matter of fact, four of the PIs in 2019 program are in biomedical related research fields. Although this is not a clinical research program, it will still benefit premed students.   

Would I be recognized if I am selected to participate?

A: Yes. your name will be recognized on the FoT web site as an FoT-SURF scholarship winner. You may list this on your C.V. or resume once complete the program.

How is the research like during the program?

A: you will be assigned by the PI a part of his/her research. The nature of the research can be found through the link provided in this year’s program description.

Will I have free time to explore the Taiwan during the program? How busy will I be?

 A: A general rule is that participants will spend 35 hours a week under training, working on the experiments, discussion or performing other research-related activities assigned by the PI. You do have free time. As long as it doesn’t affect your project, and your PI allows, you will have time to explore the city and even other towns in the country. Please keep in mind, PI and the institution will also provide you opportunities of culture exchanges. Partake in these activities will be most beneficial.

Am I required to present a paper?

A:  All participants are required to present at the end-of-program seminar. Presentation to other venues such as on campus presentation or off campus conference are encouraged. However, your work is a joint property with your PI. All presentations made after the program require your PI’s consent. 

Will I be able to publish a paper after this ten-week program?

A: It really depends on persons. The expectation is that students will complete a small project by the end of the program. Depends on the contribution, the name of the student might be on the paper when the research is published. However, this is not a set rule.

How is Taiwan’s living cost like?

A:  A meal off campus could be as low as $2.50 for a plate of pork chop rice. MacDonald’s is around $2.50-$3.50, although they don’t have all the items as they do in the US. A stake dinner ranges from $10 to $20. A move is around $5-10 depends on the city. Doctor’s office visit without any insurance is around $20-30. Starbucks is as over priced as it does here. Visiting bars is not recommended.

I understand FOT will provide scholarship for R&B and flight. Do I still need to prepare my own funding?

A: What the program provides is basic living needs. Host institutions will also provide the culture exchange experiences and sometimes, tours. However, please keep in mind, this is an international experience. Many students find it useful to have extra fund for leisure and other explorations. How much you need really depends on your life style. One general rule is that, how much per two-month period you need at your school on top of the housing and meal plan, will be how much you need for the duration of the program.

What do I need to bring or prepare for this journey?

A: The personal items required depends on the institutions. Your PI and his/her institution will provide you further information when the site is determined.

Do I need extra insurance?

A: The host institution will provide short term insurance that covers accidents, but not health care. The medical care in Taiwan is very inexpensive. Whether or not to carry extra insurance is totally up to you. 

Is Taiwan safe?

A: Taiwan is relatively safe. As the matter of fact, Taiwan was rated as second safest country in the world right next to Japan.

How is the weather like in Taiwan during the time of the program?

A: Taiwan is a tropical island, and it feels like one. If you have been in Florida Keys or Hawaii during the same time of the year, you knew that. It will be 90~95oF at noon every day. It rains frequently, which cool down the heat.