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Become an Undergraduate Research scholar and solve tough, interesting, and relevant questions

Undergraduate research man with lab equipment

Research Matters

In the spirit of forming meaningful academic and real-world experiences for our students, Pikes Peak Community College endeavors to create a strong program of undergraduate research. We seek to create a supportive framework that is both professionally enriching and rewarding. Over the next year, the program for undergraduate research will do the following:

  • Identify best practices
  • Create a framework that is beneficial and supportive
  • Understand the scope of work that PPCC students already perform
  • Network with college, university and community partners.
  • Increase participation at CSURF (Colorado Springs Undergraduate Research Forum)

For more info, contact Glenn Rohlfing at (719) 502-3462 or

"Many colleges and universities now provide research experiences for students in all disciplines. Undergraduate research, however, is most prominently in science. The goal is to involve students with actively contested questions, empirical observation, technologies, and the sense of excitement that comes from working to answer questions."

- George D. Kuh

The Undergraduate Research Process

Take a journey through the incredible field of research!

The Process

What is Research?

Valid research experiences in academia are not always equated to original research; also critical to the field of research is the ability for scholars to validate original research. This too provides opportunities for all students at Pikes Peak Community College to gain valuable research experience. Undergraduate Research at Pikes Peak Community College seeks to foster an environment where community partners, the administration, staff, faculty and most importantly students can create a rich, high-impact academic experience that aids with the following:

Increasing knowledge of academic resources utilized by the larger academic community

Learning research methods

Understanding what constitutes standards of research in a given field

Increasing ability to both identify and utilize research methodology

Creating networks of collaborators - including faculty mentors, fellow peer-researchers, and community partnerships

Communicating research orally and through presentation to a diverse audience

Working with faculty to publish research findings

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Did You Know?

Beyond College

Participation in undergraduate research benefits students in areas that can reach further than the classroom, in areas like:

  • Developing tolerance for obstacles

  • Learning to work independently

  • Understanding how knowledge is constructed

  • Building self-confidence

  • Finding evidence for assertions

  • Clarifying career paths

(Source: Undergraduate Research Experiences Support Science Career Decisions and Active Learning)

Students Say...


"Having someone tell you that your ideas, research, and presentations are valuable enough to heard by actual academics is one of the most inspiring things to ever happen to me. That is the value of having community college students at events like these and having undergraduates present their own research... CSURF made me feel like a valuable member of the academic community."

-- Joshua Van Sanford, PPCC Student and Undergraduate Research Scholar


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Fall 2019

Research topics that PPCC students are currently exploring:

  • Phi Theta Kappa: Politics of Identity - Transforming Stigma Related to Childhood Epilepsy to Create a Positive Self-Identity

Students: Andre Guy, Mariah Mayhugh, Hailey, and Maria Bergman

Faculty Mentors: Ilah Jackson and Glenn Rohlfing


Creating spaces for students, faculty, and community members to foster rich experiences in Undergraduate Research.


Creating opportunities for students to expand their minds through inquiry, grow academically through faculty mentorship, become competent researchers, and increase their soft skills by writing and speaking about their research.


Pikes Peak Community College not only recognizes the importance of original research, but we also view the validation of research as significant experiences that imbue research skills. These experiences will put students on a pathway to learn research skills and to become proficinet researchers. We welcome original research, and support students who want to recreate original research for verification.

The Four Characteristics of Undergraduate Research






(Source: Kardash, CarolAnne M.)