How to Stand Out When Applying to STEM Programs

Posted On Jul 19, 2022 |

An in depth look into Lumiere, a research organization that provides high school students access to research opportunities with top global scholars.

How to Stand Out When Applying to STEM Programs - Interview Q&A Summary With Ryan Astor from Lumiere Education

College STEM programs are growing in popularity causing a higher than usual number of applications across the US. What can you do to rise above the rest of the applicants and secure your own admission? Research.

Most science and tech enthusiasts are intrigued by research, but the truth is, research is often hard to come by until you are finishing up junior or senior year of undergrad. Depending on the university and the professors, some students don’t have access to research until even later than that.

What if I told you there was a way to choose a STEM topic you are passionate about, be matched with a mentor to assist you throughout your research, and then get assistance publishing your very own research paper and present your findings.

Talk about showing up, showing out, and showing your passion and dedication for STEM! What college wouldn’t want to accept a student who has already gone as far to publish a research paper?!

I met with Ryan from Lumiere Education, a research organization that provides high school students access to research opportunities with top global scholars and he gave some insight into what their students do, and how they stand out.

Q:  Let’s talk about Lumiere, tell me what is it exactly?

Founded by Harvard and Oxford researchers, the Lumiere Research Scholar Program offers students the opportunity to work 1-on-1 with a PhD mentor to learn about the cutting edge in their field of interest and produce an independently-developed research project.

Along with creating an independent research paper, we help students demonstrate advanced work in their field of interest, build a strong college application profile, and develop critical thinking and problem solving skills.

Q: How did it get started?

Our co-founders, Stephen and Dhruva met in a research program very similar to Lumiere while they were undergraduate students at Harvard. Lumiere’s mission is to provide world-class research opportunities for students around the world. That mission comes from the experience Stephen and Dhruva had together. We seek to ensure that the opportunities they were given, received due to luck as much as anything, are not hidden in Ivory towers, but shared for the world’s best students.

Q: Who was Lumiere designed for?

Our students, whom we call Lumiere Research Scholars, are talented, driven, and hungry for the opportunities to do research with world-class experts. We are proud of them, and we are proud of the remarkable research mentor community we’ve created. Our program is available to students 8th - 12th grade.

Q: Why is research important?

At Lumiere, high school students have done research on everything from genetic engineering to art history, from theoretical mathematics to international relations. These are fields that are totally different to each other, but still all come together under the umbrella term of "research.”

We view research as a process. It's the process of creating a piece of new knowledge that helps us understand the world a little better. Along with understanding, research allows students to grow and develop critical thinking and problem solving skills, create new knowledge, and learn more about a topic that excites them.

Join the Navigating US College Admissions + Scholarships Facebook Community and Access the Full Interview

You can access the full interview by Christen with Ryan here. To be able to access this though, you will need to join our Navigating US College Admissions + Scholarships Facebook Community.

Another huge benefit of joining also is that you get to be in a group where you have access to a wide range of resources on the college admissions process from applications, test prep, student loans, essay help, financial aid assistance, scholarships, and more - all in one place.

Both parents and their children can benefit from having one place to look for resources, engage with both experts, resource persons and other people with similar concerns and tips, and also get daily posts on related topics which may be of help.

Categories: college admissions

About the Author

Christen is the founder of Hive Education. She is passionate about helping families navigate the college application and admissions processes. She helps students set goals to work towards their own debt-free degrees with her personalized scholarship searches, scholarship courses, and by sharing her scholarship strategies that won her over $900,000 in for her own college education. With four years of experience in higher education, two years working with teens in inner city high schools in New Orleans, and starting her first college consulting company during a pandemic in 2020 she strives to make college accessible for everyone, especially for first generation, low income, and minority students. In her spare time she loves to share her love for books with her daughters. You can find her on Facebook.

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