For the first time, an RIT LSAMP (Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation) and McNair Scholar has been selected to participate in the France/Belgium international Research Experience for Undergraduates (iREU). Xavier Thompson was selected to participate in the prestigious program during the summer of 2018. This research opportunity is offered annually in collaboration with Louisiana State University (LSU) LSAMP program.
Currently, Xavier is a fourth-year student majoring in economics and minoring in chemistry at RIT. He will be participating in an intense summer 12-week research project that will offer him both challenging and transformational educational experiences. Thompson will be working in a laboratory in Toulouse, France alongside world renowned scientists conducting research that will make a positive impact in the STEM fields.
Xavier’s education hasn’t been linear or singularly focused in chemistry. He recalled how his experiences with the MCAS Summer Bridge program were instrumental to his success before starting as a freshman at RIT. Throughout his academic career, he’s learned from his failures, turning to advisors and faculty for advice. Xavier knows that all his practical lab experience with RIT faculty, through the McNair and LSAMP programs has broadened his research skills. He believes his eclectic background and education was an asset and differentiated him from other candidates. Xavier found a way to combine his passion in economics and chemistry.
“For students who might not know what they want to do, my advice is to expose yourself to a lot of different opportunities and discover what drives your passion,” Xavier said.
The McNair and LSAMP Programs will be accepting new students in fall 2018. Any eligible student interested in graduate school and research experience is encouraged to apply here.