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Baylor Undergraduates @ VA Center of Excellence Research Program

Baylor Undergraduates @ VA Center of Excellence Research Program (CERP)

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) VISN 17 Center of Excellence for Research on Returning War Veterans (COE), located at the Waco Veterans Affairs Medical Center, is now accepting applications for a 2-semester (required minimum) undergraduate research program which begins with the fall semester. The purpose of this training program is to provide current Baylor University undergraduate students with practical research experience in psychology, specifically focused on mental health concerns among returning Veterans.

Current studies at the COE focus on the assessment, functioning, and treatment of mental health problems in returning war Veterans. Investigators have a particular interest in Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, traumatic brain injury, substance use disorders, and trajectories of functioning over time. Students will be assigned primarily to one study but may be involved in multiple research projects based on their interests and the COE's needs.

Students will have the opportunity to be supervised by doctoral-level researchers and trained in several aspects of research including (but not limited to): data entry, data management, screening participants for eligibility into current research studies, literature searches, reviewing articles, coordination of research materials, and participating in weekly staff meetings. Students will gain experience and familiarity with using Statistical Package for the Social Sciences(SPSS) and Microsoft Excel. Through an educational component, research assistants will learn critical reading and analysis skills through weekly discussion groups on current literature related to COE studies. In addition, interested students can gain mentorship in creating curriculum vitas, writing personal statements, and developing an area of interest for further independent study. Motivated and committed research assistants may be invited to participate in the dissemination of research through presentations at local and national conferences or publication in professional journals.

Program Timeline:

  • January - Application to the program opens
  • March 19 - Applications due
  • March - Applications will be reviewed and interviews conducted
  • April - Candidates will be selected and notified
  • May through June - Accepted students complete credentialing process and paperwork
  • End of August - Fall classes begin; first research meeting held
  • Beginning of May - Spring classes end; 2-semester commitment ends

If you have any questions about this opportunity, please contact Dr. Andrew Cook at Andrew.Cook@va.gov or Dr. Bryann DeBeer at Bryann.Debeer@va.gov. Thank you for your interest in being a research assistant at the Center of Excellence.

View the Baylor Undergraduates @ VA Center of Excellence Research Program Recruitment Flier by clicking HERE.


This application has closed. Please, check back with us. Thank you for your interest!


Acceptance to this program will be based on academic achievements, student involvement, and interest in order to create valuable student/mentor relationships. Eligible students must submit a completed application by the deadline to be considered for this opportunity. Learn more about the required application materials for the Center of Excellence Research Program at www.baylor.edu/prehealth/CERPappmaterials. There are no student stipends for this program at this time.