The Charles A. Dana Research Institute for Scientists Emeriti (RISE) at Drew University offers undergraduates a unique opportunity to engage in research under the supervision of retired industrial scientists. Since 1980 Institute fellows have guided the research efforts of nearly three hundred and fifty students majoring in biology, chemistry, mathematics, and physics. The program is believed to be the only one of its kind in the nation and in 1989 received the prestigious Merck Innovation Award for Undergraduate Science Education “for fresh thinking and imaginative use of resources.”
Under the mission of the Institute, retired scientists receive offices, research space, and equipment at Drew in exchange for directing the research of advanced undergraduates. The fellows of the Institute are expected to spend at least half of their time doing research of their choosing that engages an average of two Drew students per semester. Interdisciplinary synergistic projects involving several researchers are encouraged. Fellows discuss with students the issues and possibilities of careers in industrial employment, help arrange activities that create bridges between Drew and industry and participate with Drew faculty members in recruiting new students and fellows. Frequently, fellows offer undergraduate courses in their areas of expertise.