Randall Research Scholars Program

The Nation’s First Interdisciplinary Undergraduate Research Program

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Recent Awards

Sydney Aldrich

Junior | Chemical Engineering

Sydney Aldrich is a chemical engineering major from Helena, Alabama. Her interest in the interface between chemical engineering and preserving the environment was sparked by her experiences observing climate change, its causes, and its effects across the globe. She currently conducts research under Dr. Amanda Koh studying novel surfactants for their use in high internal phase emulsion polymer foams as water treatment technology. After graduation, she plans to pursue a career in environmental pollution remediation and work in research and development to reduce the impact of pollution on the natural world. Outside of research, Sydney is a member of the UA American Institute of Chemical Engineers and UA Forest Stewards Guild. Additionally, she participates in the UA fencing club and Randall Research Scholars intramural sports as the Boot Sequence goalkeeper.

"The Randall Research Scholars Program has been an unfailing source of support and encouragement for all its members and alumni. Being surrounded by like-minded peers and exceptional faculty has been truly invaluable for my growth as a person and in my professional life. This program is a wonderful opportunity to gain experience in research and professionalism while making bonds that will last a lifetime."

Read more about external awards by clicking on the following link: External Award Recipients.

Aurora Baker

Junior | Environmental Science

Aurora is an environmental science major and Spanish minor from St. Louis, Missouri. Under Dr. Hart in the Forest Dynamics Lab, she studies the topographic effects on residual tree spatial patterns after catastrophic wind disturbance in longleaf pine woodlands. This summer, she has accepted an REU position in cave and karst science at James Madison University. She is developing surveys to confirm sinkholes in the field and determine their risk level, as well as creating a visual compilation of karst data. Outside of research, Aurora is the president of the Forest Stewards Guild, the RRS representative on the Honors College Advisory Board, and the RRS Intramural Sports Manager. She has previously received university honors including Honors College Student of the Month, RRS Outstanding Service Award, and RRS Outstanding Freshman. Her future goals include pursuing a master’s degree in geography with a concentration in GIS through the Accelerated Master’s Program.

“The Randall Research Scholars Program has provided me with guidance and support throughout my time at UA, and the opportunities afforded to me through this program have encouraged me to apply and pursue this scholarship. Thank you to Mrs. Batson, Dr. Gray, and Darren Evans-Young for your mentorship.”

Read more about external awards by clicking on the following link: External Award Recipients.

Kylie Overton

Junior | Mechanical Engineering & Environmental Science

Kylie Overton is an Honors College student pursuing a dual bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering and environmental science with minors in the Randall Research Scholars Program and Blount Scholars Program. She conducts research on membrane filtration and materials synthesis for wastewater purification within the Elliott Water Research Group under Dr. Mark Elliott and Dr. Mostafa Firouzjaei. She also conducts research on food insecurity within the Ancient People and Plants Laboratory under Dr. Katherine Chiou. Overton is the director of service of the New College student-led course called Outdoor Leadership and Service. She serves as the director of advocacy with the Environment Council and as the vice president of the Veg Club. She is also part of the rock-climbing club and enjoys volunteering at Jeremiah’s Community Garden.

Read more about external awards by clicking on the following link: External Award Recipients.

Skylar Elliott

Junior | Metallurgical Engineering

Skylar Elliott is a metallurgical engineering major from Harvest, Alabama. She was first exposed to research her senior year of high school through an internship with NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville. Although she has conducted other undergraduate research, Skylar currently works under Dr. Gregory Kubacki in the metallurgical and materials engineering department to determine how novel surface processes and fabrication techniques affect localized corrosion for high-strength alloys. She has coauthored two publications in materials science and chemical engineering. Her plan after graduating in 2024 is to pursue a doctorate degree in materials science and engineering to ultimately conduct research in corrosion mitigation for aerospace and defense applications while teaching as a university professor. Outside of her research, Skylar is a research dimension leader for RRS-PRO, the secretary of the metallurgical engineering UA chapter, a representative to the Honors College Student Advisory Board, a member of the 35th order of the XXXI honorary, and a member of UA’s Cast in Steel competition team.

“The Randall Research Scholars Program has provided me with innumerable opportunities to grow in professionalism and research experience, setting me up for success in a lifetime career of research. I am so thankful to be a part of this program!”

Read more about external awards by clicking on the following link: External Award Recipients.

Riley Nold

Sophomore | Physics & Mathematics

Riley Nold is a physics and mathematics major originally from Sioux Falls, South Dakota. During the summer of 2022, as part of an NSF REU, Riley worked as an undergraduate research assistant studying magnetron sputtering and magnetic characterization of rare-earth perovskites. This opportunity sparked his interest in solid-state physics research and the study of novel thin-film systems. At UA, he is currently working under Dr. Adam Hauser to characterize the crystalline and electronic structure of novel Heusler compounds via computational density functional theory. He plans on pursuing a doctorate in experimental condensed matter physics with a research focus in thin-film fabrication, eventually hoping to become a university professor. Outside of research, Nold is a member of UA’s chapter of The Society of Physics Students, where he leads the program's undergraduate physics journal club and organizes professional development events. In his free time, he enjoys writing poetry and volunteering to help K12 speech and debate teams.

"The Randall Research Scholars Program has provided me with a community that has supported me and pushed me outside my comfort zone. Through connections with amazing research faculty and the guidance of my peers and RRS mentors, I have achieved goals that once seemed unobtainable. The RRS program has given me the tools I need to grow as a physics researcher and a STEM professional."

Read more about external awards by clicking on the following link: External Award Recipients.

Congratulations to Dr. Jeffrey Gray for winning The Morris Lehman Mayer Award.

The award recognizes a faculty member who exemplifies integrity, selfless service and leadership at UA and in the community while making significant contributions to student life. Click on the following links to learn more:

The UA Mayer Award | About Dr. Gray


Brendan Granger

Brendan Granger

Class of 2024 | Accounting & Finance

"The Randall Research Scholars Program has given me access to a network of distinguished alumni and a group of students that has propelled me academically and professionally far beyond what I could have otherwise achieved on my own here at the University of Alabama."

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Sabrina Jung

Sabrina Jung

Class of 2022 | Math & Finance

“The Randall Research Scholars Program has far exceeded my expectations coming into college. It is a fun, fast paced, and collaborative environment designed to challenge each student while bringing together a diverse group of inquisitive and driven individuals.

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Ian Brown

Ian Brown

Class of 2024 | Chemical Engineering

“The Randall Research Scholars program built my research knowledge and confidence from the ground up. Peer mentorship taught me what research looks like and how to set out to achieve my personal goals.”

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Our History of Excellence

The Randall Research Scholars Program was founded as the Computer-Based Honors Program (CBHP) in 1968 by Dr. Charles L. Seebeck to produce students who become leaders in application of computer techniques to various fields of knowledge. For the program's first fifty years, CBHP remained true to these original objectives while expanding the focus of the program to meet the continuing advances in technology and the advent of the “information age”. This culminated in 2017, when the program was renamed in honor of one of our previous directors, Dr. Catherine J. Randall. The Catherine J. Randall Research Scholars Program seeks to honor the groundbreaking original program objectives while expanding the vision to encourage continued development of its student researchers as leaders in their fields.

As the oldest undergraduate research program in the United States, the Randall Research Scholars Program is internationally competitive. The members of our program come from all over the globe and present their research at global conferences. Moreover, our students routinely earn prestigious academic awards at the national scale.


Hollings Scholars


Goldwater Scholars


NSF Graduate Research Fellows