MSU is Montana’s land grant university. The land grant mission, as set forth in the first Morrill Act of 1862, was to “teach agriculture, military tactics, and the mechanic arts as well as classical studies so members of the working classes could obtain a liberal, practical education.” [1] In this century, with the rapid pace of innovation, opportunities to participate in the basic and applied research that underpins technology development is an extremely valuable component of a practical education.

In carrying out the land grant mission, the Energy Research Institute (ERI) engages students in its energy related research at both the undergraduate and graduate levels. A significant fraction of the research funding ERI receives goes to supporting student salaries, graduate student tuition, and materials and supplies for students to conduct the research. The research activities provide discovery-based learning opportunities, a team working environment, mentorship from faculty and more senior students, and, in many projects, an opportunity to interact with industry.

[1]   "The Land-Grant Tradition", Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities.

Students involved in ERI research come from the following departments:

Students interested in energy research can directly contact the appropriate faculty member as identified through the faculty link on the left-hand navigation pane, the appropriate department, or the Energy Research Institute.

Graduate student Emily Reeves and Assistant Professor Sharon Neufeldt in the lab (Photo A. Gonzalez). Biomineralization research team.Graduate student Emily Reeves working with air-sensitive compounds in an inert atmosphere glovebox (Photo A. Gonzalez). Students study carbonate rock cores to understand different depositional systems. (D. Bowen)Adding a reagent by syringe during the synthesis of a new organometallic complex (S. Neufeldt lab, photo A. Gonzalez)Engineering students and faculty working on wind turbine. MSU photo by Kelly Gorham.Student sampling mine influenced water for microbial analysis to investigate potential bioremediation. (E. Lauchner lab, photo credit: Emily Stoick) Students sampling hot springs to characterize microbes that live in extreme conditions. (B. Peyton lab, photo Extended University)MSU Photo by Adrian Sanchez-Gonzalez.

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