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Welcome to the 2018 CNF-Hosted REU Programs!!

Sayeeda Aishee
Vivek Anil
Jordan Howard-Jennings
Josh Romo
Sierra Russell
Kody Whisnant
Reed Yalisove

Melanie-Claire Mallison

Friday, March 30, 2018

Whee Ha and Hello, Everyone! Welcome to the 2018 Cornell NanoScale Science & Technology Facility Research Experience for Undergraduates (CNF REU) Program!

This is the very special beginning of the CNF REU Program "adopting" two other Cornell-hosted programs -- the Center for Transportation, Environment & Community Health (CTECH) REU Program and the Keeping the Ezra Promise (KEP) REU Program. Between the three programs, there are seven interns so far (KEP may hire one more). I think we are going to have a great summer together! But, I predict that there will be some confusion (mostly on my part, I admit), because each program has a slightly different level of CNF involvement. So just know that if you have any questions on what is going on and what YOU have to do, call me, stop by my office, email me, we'll work it out together.

For instance, all five CNF REU interns will take our short course (aka the CNF TCN) and get trained to use our labs and cleanroom, while the CTECH and KEP interns will not do any of that, BUT still get to take advantage of much of the free food involved. SO! We will all have to remember who we are and when I say "get to the short course on time today!" -- those who are in the course, get there on time, those who are NOT in the course, ignore me!

As if that is not enough to sort out, we are also working with the Platform for the Accelerated Realization, Analysis, and Discovery of Interface Materials (PARADIM) REU Program for many of our summer events.  Those interns are also listed way below, though they are not included in this message, since they have their own program coordinators to welcome them.

Are we confused yet? ;-)

Ok. Here we go!

All seven interns for the three CNF-hosted REU Programs are now locked in (and listed above and all the way below….) and we have a lot to do in the next few months. I don't want to forget anything or lose anyone -- so let's get started planning our summer together! This is a very long email attempting to answer all the questions you may have for me, and I'll be sending you a second email with the questions I have for you. Please be sure to respond to that one immediately! We need the information to get you into the Cornell system. I will also be sending you an email specific to your travel planning and stipend payments. More on that below.

All of this will also be on the CNF REU web site soon, http://www.cnf.cornell.edu/cnf5_reuprogram.html

BTW! NO award letters or information packets have been mailed out yet, sorry! I will do so Monday, I promise. Please let me know if and when you receive that packet. ALSO, I lie in your award letter.  I am not including a copy of this email in the packet….

On to business:

[1] The CNF CTECH KEP REU Interns:

At the very bottom of this message, you'll find a list of all the REU interns, their colleges, REU principal investigators (PIs), and the titles of their project. Getting to know your fellow REUs is a prime way to get the most out of your summer here, so take a look at those with whom you'll be working and see what they'll be up to.

[2] Introduce Yourself!

Speaking of getting to know each other, I have my first request of you -- start a new email to everyone (including me, addresses above) and introduce yourself. Tell us what you're up to at school, what you like to do on your days off, why you're looking forward to coming to Ithaca, etc. Please attach a recent photograph of yourself! I know you are busy, but just take a moment now to do this. And I get to go first!

So, I'm *Ms.* Melanie-Claire Mallison, not Prof., Dr., and definitely NOT "Mrs." -- and I go by Melanie-Claire or Melanie or MC or Ms. Mellie. Whatever suits you best. I've been with the Cornell NanoScale Facility since 1996 (Holy Moly! This year is my 22nd anniversary!), after graduating as a return-to-college student from Ithaca College in 1991. I was a writing, theater and dance major, so this research stuff is a little over my head, but I've picked up a few clues over the past umpteen years. Formatting over one thousand technical reports will get thru even this artistic brain!

I'm a proud single mom and a VERY proud Grammy M. My son, Nathan, is a fantastic young man. He's 32 now, married to the lovely Liz, and they are the proud parents of Kai, who is five, and Ella, who is two next month! With any luck, you'll get a chance to meet Nate and his wonderful family over the summer. As a VERY proud grammy, I can't see myself not making that happen! See the attached photos...

Nate and I are both Quakers (members of the Religious Society of Friends) and every summer we disappear for a week at the end of July to attend a Quaker conference. I’m on several Quaker committees that keep me on my toes, but I'm also into all sorts of needlecrafts, trash SyFy and action movies, mystery novels, and in my spare time, I’m sorting thru my whole house in prep for selling it this fall. As long as these things don't cut into my TV time ... I am a dedicated couch potato! Though, to reiterate, an even more proud grammy! So I will drop it all in a nano-second if Ella and or Kai need me ...

As a proud mom-type, I take my responsibilities to all of YOU very seriously. I want you to have the best summer ever, and I put a lot of time and heart into making that happen. I know you are all adults and probably don't really need another mom, but I do take it very personally if things go wrong! I'm a mama bear, what can I say? At the same time, I am sometimes a little too blunt -- “snarky” I like to call it. If you feel that *I* have done you wrong, tell me. I have open ears.

Finally, speaking of me brings me to my next point ...

[3] Who is in Charge Here?

I am the coordinator of the three CNF-hosted REU Programs. This means that I am essentially responsible for you for the summer. So any program questions you can't find the answers to or lab problems you cannot solve quickly on your own should come to me. The stories I could tell you (and actually will) of the many ways interns have found to stall their project when all they had to do was come to me and ask a question! PLEASE tell me right away if anything is going wrong for you. First, I love to schmooze, but mostly I love to solve your problems. Plus, you don't know the CNF and Cornell like I know the CNF and Cornell, so I can solve some problems a whole lot quicker than you can. And with only ten weeks to the program, time is of the essence!

The best way to contact me is via email, but my office is in 350 Duffield Hall (at the moment anyway, I may get moved), and I'm typically at my desk from 9am to 6pm. In fact, one of your weekly assignments is to come visit with me for a few minutes every week, so we can talk about how it's all going for you. More on that requirement below...

[4] Program Start Dates:

I would like to get everyone on campus on Saturday, June 2nd, when all the other Cornell REUs are arriving, so that you have time to settle in, look around and start getting to know each other. Also, that is the weekend of the Ithaca Festival (June 1-3), which attracts a huge crowd and includes a lot of fun, food, music and entertainment. You should check it out! http://www.ithacafestival.org/

The CNF-hosted & PARADIM REU Programs officially start with Orientation Day on Tuesday, June 5th, with breakfast at 9:00 a.m. here at CNF -- in 340 Duffield Hall, to be exact. I'll email you when the detailed schedule is available online, but to give you an early warning, this first day is quite full with meetings, tours, and check-ins -- and a Welcome Luncheon where you'll meet your principal investigator (PI) and mentors. Also, the CNF TCN short course starts that Tuesday at 5:30 p.m. (more on the short course below). Free food all day, woo hoo!

So dress comfortably -- and CNF REUs, dress for entering the cleanroom. Also be prepared to have your photograph taken for your Cornell ID card! (You must bring photo ID with you for this part.)

[5] CNF REU ONLY, Lab Usage & Safety Manual, Cleanroom Clothing and Access Restrictions:

Go to http://www.cnf.cornell.edu/cnf5_publication.html where you'll find the Lab Usage & Safety Manual. You MUST read this entire manual before you arrive in Ithaca! Most critical of the information is the dress code and access restrictions for the cleanroom, so I'm putting those items in right here. Read the dress code and pack accordingly! (See "[12] What to Pack?" too ...)

Clothing Restrictions: For safety and cleanliness reasons, users must wear the proper clothing while in any of the CNF lab areas. These requirements are not just for the cleanroom, but include the second floor lab spaces as well. The dress code is online, and any updates will be reflected there. Therefore the website overrides anything I say here!


A] Footwear: You must wear fully enclosed SHOES, with socks or stockings. The shoes must be clean and dry. Sandals, open toe shoes and high heels (over one inch) are NOT allowed. The shoes should not have deep cleat soles, because deep treads increase the amount of dirt and mud carried into the facility. During rainy weather, a clean change of shoes must be brought with you. Even when dry, shoes worn outside in rainy weather will carry in a large amount of road salt and dirt. Most users simply keep an extra pair of shoes at the facility for use during poor weather.

B] Bodywear: PANTS must be clean and ankle length. Shorts, short pants (Capris or high waters), skirts, dresses, or excessively ripped or frayed pants are NOT allowed. Excessively long or baggy pants create a safety hazard and are also not permitted. A popular option during the warm summer months is to wear hospital-style scrub pants. Just Google "scrubs" to buy some -- they are cheap!

SHIRTS must cover from your pants to your neck, including your shoulders, without a bare midriff. Shirts should also not be so loose as to be hazard. Tank tops, spaghetti straps, low-cut shirts, and crop tops are NOT allowed. Tops that just meet your pants, but bare your midriff if you raise your arms are NOT allowed. Women, if I may be blunt -- THINK about the part of your body you are exposing to chemical spills if you bare your midriff when you raise your arms (to protect your face from the spill, for instance). Everyone -- when dressing for the cleanroom, think normal t-shirts, TUCKED IN.

ALSO! When working in the cleanroom, you should avoid wearing makeup, most especially mascara (which flakes and floats), and colognes or perfumes (which disguise the odors of chemicals, during a spill for instance).

BOTTOM LINE: Working in our cleanroom is not a fashion show, it's a safety show! Again, pack accordingly.

When you arrive at Orientation Day, at the short course, and at any of your trainings, wear or bring proper cleanroom attire, even if you don't "expect" to be going into the cleanroom, or you may start right off getting kicked out of something important!

CNF REU Cleanroom Access Restrictions:

CNF REU interns are on restricted cleanroom access for the first four weeks of our program, because you are all undergraduates.

FIRST WEEK: From the moment you arrive in Ithaca through to Monday, June 11th, you are NOT allowed into the cleanroom AT ALL, except as part of the CNF short course.

SECOND WEEK: You'll receive your CNF New User Training on Monday and Tuesday, June 11th and 12th. There will be a detailed schedule for the second week, covering your New User Training and relevant tool trainings.

Assuming you pass your New User training, you are on the following restricted hours Tuesday, June 12th, all the way through to Monday, July 2nd.


1. Monday through Friday, you may be in the cleanroom from 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. without your mentor (because there are staff in the cleanroom who can assist you if necessary), and from 6:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m. with your mentor. (“With your mentor” means in the same room as your mentor, not in a different sections from each other….)

2. Monday through Friday, 11:00 p.m. to 8:00 a.m., you are not allowed in the cleanroom.

3. Weekends; You are not allowed in the cleanroom at all from 11:00 p.m. Friday evening to 8:00 a.m. Monday morning, period. Not even with your mentor.


1. If you observe these restrictions and do not make any mistakes during the weeks of restricted use, then you are released to 24/7 access on Tuesday morning of the fifth week (July 2nd). NOTE that Wednesday of that week is the 4th of July and a staff holiday. Buddy system rules will be in effect!

2. Any CNF REU student who demonstrates that they cannot follow these restrictions or other lab policies will NOT be given unrestricted access. For instance, entering the cleanroom after 11:00 p.m. or on a weekend will get you some measure of additional restricted hours.

NOTE #1: We will check on badging in / out to ensure you are following our restrictions.

NOTE #2: There may be other undergraduate students using our cleanroom via REU programs other than ours. They have different restrictions than you. So the fact that at some point, you can use the cleanroom at 3 a.m. does NOT mean your buddy from the CCMR REU Program can too. Avoid getting other REU interns in trouble and don't assume they are working under the same rules as you are!

[6] ALL INTERNS, Program End Dates:

The program ends on Friday, August 10th, when you must submit your final report to me. Everyone heads home (sniffle) on Saturday, August 11th. As a heads-up, we will have a nano-convocation in August, where you will present your research to the CNF community. Plan to dress professionally that day. (See [12] What to Pack? below. It covers clothing requirements for the convocation.)

NOTE #4: SPECIFICALLY for the CNF REU FIVE! We will be traveling to North Carolina State University, for a National Nanotechnology Coordinated Infrastructure (NNCI) convocation, currently planned for Sunday, August 5-7.  We'll talk.....

[7] Travel Planning:

I'll send you another email next, introducing you to my co-worker Rebecca Vliet who will explain the travel planning process and assist you in arranging your travel needs. Also, we will provide you with a summer-long bus pass for Tompkins Consolidated Area Transit (TCAT) http://www.tcatbus.com/

NOTE #5: CNF REU, we pay 100% of your reasonable travel costs to Ithaca, to North Carolina, and home. CTECH and KEP REU, please work with Rebecca on your travel arrangements.  You are on a travel budget (sorry).

[8] Housing on Cornell Campus:

Cornell Conference Services (CCS) will be rooming everyone in Cascadilla Hall -- technically not on Cornell campus, but only a block away in a neighborhood we fondly call Collegetown. You will ALL be in your own single room and we will pay for each of you to have a micro-fridge and a box fan in your room. CCS sends out an information sheet that is not yet ready, but I'll get that to you as soon as I can. As an aside, almost all the Cornell University REUs will be in Cascadilla Hall, and as much as possible, you'll be clustered with the other CNF-hosted REUs, so introduce yourselves! Go to the Ithaca Festival together! Play Frisbee! Search out food together! Get to know the other people! First, because friends are great and you can support each other in getting to Orientation and TCN on time, but also, because you can then identify the loud party people (who will not be you, of course), so that I can get their program coordinators to reprimand them!

When you arrive, CCS will provide you with standard issue bed linens, pillow and pillowcase, one blanket, and two towels. If you have a special pillow or prefer your SpongeBob SquarePants blanket, bring that with you. Otherwise, the linens set that CCS provides is yours for the summer! So you'll have to set up a laundry account as outlined on the information sheet you'll receive soon I hope, by going to http://card.campuslife.cornell.edu/, creating a login, and adding money to your Cornell ID card, which you will get on our Orientation Day, Tuesday!

And. Speaking of Orientation Day, I would like to add a cautionary tale from my experience with a previous intern. Problem Child Story #1; He got bored on that first Monday and joined in on a campus tour. Then on Tuesday, when everyone went on the campus tour that I very specifically arrange for you, he said -- I'm gonna do something else because I already took the tour. Well, to be frank, that made me really mad. Refer to -- I can be snarky. AND he knew it was on the schedule. So, stay on my good side and do NOT take a campus tour on Monday, no matter how bored you get. There are many things to do in Ithaca other than those that will bring out my mama bear claws. Ok?


I did warn you that I get snarky sometimes, right? But I think it's balanced out by the SpongeBob SquarePants remark, right?

Cascadilla Hall has nine kitchens. The residence hall is not air cooled, so open the windows! At the same time, Conference Services has asked us to start early letting you know the following -- you MUST lock your room door all the time! There were many police reports last summer for stolen items. Lock your door, folks, even when you are in your room.  And close those windows when you leave the building, especially if you are on the first or second floors. Ithaca is a lovely town, but petty theft is a huge problem.

[9] Housing Off Campus:

If for some reason, you decide to live off-campus, we will NOT pay for any part of your housing. Sorry, but the dorm housing is paid for as an incentive to have you stay on campus with your fellow REUs and create the community that is an important part of the program.

[10] My Questions for You

Please be sure to respond IMMEDIATELY and ONLY to me. Thank you!

[a] Are you planning to live on-campus in the CNF REU-provided housing?

[b] Who should we contact in case of emergency (ICE)? Full Name and their relationship to you, Phone Number and or Cell, Complete Street Address, Email Address. One ICE contact is fine, but two is best!

[c] Your full legal name (usually what's on your driver's license).

[d] Your date of birth. Month Date, Year. All spelled out, please! (May 24, 1957, for example!)


[11] Food:

As I say, we provide each of you with a refrigerator and microwave unit in your own room, so you can keep food and cook it "at home." In addition, Cascadilla Hall has nine kitchens, so cooking meals will not be a problem. Plan to provide your own pots-n-pans and utensils (bring or purchase a set to share once you get here), and protect your food by using only the fridge in your room -- anything in the communal refrigerators is going to disappear for sure. Also, when you use the kitchen, please be sure to clean up after yourself. Aside from the fact that anything you leave there will be taken (stolen), it's a kindness to leave the community spaces the way you would like to find them. As an aside, if the kitchens are a constant mess, and you know who is responsible, tell me! No sense letting the entire building suffer over one slob.

I assume a number of you will be driving to Ithaca and will be VERY popular with the others, especially for grocery runs! Cornell has a summer meal plan and I'll send out that email separately. So really, food will not be a problem, other than the fact that we won't pay for it (sorry).

HOWEVER! The CNF has a New User Lunch every Monday to which you are invited, and all the Cornell Engineering REU programs get together and have free lunch once or twice a week, plus a couple of group dinners, and the CNF short course includes breakfast and lunch all three days, so there is a lot of free food around! And you'll receive your first stipend payment of $1700 when you arrive on Tuesday, so you'll have plenty of money for groceries, and/or to pay for a meal plan once you arrive.

As an aside, Ithaca has one of the most fabulous Farmers Markets in the Western Hemisphere and past interns have reprimanded me for not letting them know right away. So I'm letting you know! Check out the Ithaca Farmers Market at Steamboat Landing, http://www.ithacamarket.com/

[12] What to Pack?

The weather in Ithaca is unpredictable at best. Summers can be warm (80s) to very warm (for us, 90s) to very cool (50s in the evenings). And it's muggy (humid), so the hot feels hotter and the cool feels cooler. Sometimes that all happens in one day, one hour in fact. When you are not in the lab or cleanroom, there is a veritable plethora of outdoorsy things to do here. Hiking, swimming, canoeing, mountain biking, and swing dancing, etc. One of our staff is sure to introduce you to Salsa Night at Agava Restaurant! Also, we'll be holding the nano-convocation and NNCI convocation, both of which will be video-taped for posterity, so you'll need to have at least TWO formal outfits. By "formal" I mean -- dress slacks, dress shirts, dress jackets, dresses, etc. Ties are an instrument of torture ... but they are a nice touch, I'm sorry to say. So, gentlemen, bring at least one tie….

Given all of this, you'll want to pack a little of everything -- from swim suits and beach towels, to tank tops, shorts and sandals, to dress-up clothes, to warm woollies and hiking boots. NONE of which are allowed in the labs and cleanroom -- remember, when you go into the cleanroom / labs, you must be wearing full-length pants, socks and close-toed shoes, and t-shirts that tuck in.

SAFETY ALERT: One year, on the first day of the REU program, a pre-frosh student went swimming with friends in one of the Ithaca gorges, and he drowned. This is something I never EVER want to experience, nor do YOU for sure. DO NOT swim in the gorges marked NO SWIMMING. Swim in one of the many many state parks where swimming is legal and just as fun. Peers will pressure you, but DO NOT SWIM IN "NO SWIMMING" ZONES. IN FACT, my boss -- and yours, ultimately -- will FIRE you if he finds out you have been swimming in a no swimming zone.  So, DO NOT SWIM IN "NO SWIMMING" ZONES.

Cornell University has come out with this very powerful and very sad video on gorge safety.  You may be tempted to take a quick dip on a hot day, but do NOT swim in the no-swimming areas.  Period. Thank you for staying safe!!

Cornell also has a helpful website listing all the safe places to swim!

[13] CU Info:

For all kinds of campus info http://cuinfo.cornell.edu/ is the best place to start looking for answers. Computing, Health and Wellness, Athletics, Banking, Dining, Campus Events, Grad School, etc. etc. etc. Please look at CU Info, ESPECIALLY Cornell Fitness! http://www.fitness.cornell.edu/

[14] REU Stipend:

As a CNF-hosted REU intern, you receive an educational stipend of $5,000 (*), split into three payments, over the three months of the program, June-August. The email introducing Rebecca Vliet will also cover your stipend payments.

(* As an early warning, you will NOT receive a W2 for your stipend, come tax time, because an educational stipend in NOT taxed and is not paid via Payroll, but rather via the Cornell Bursar Office. Furthermore, I will NOT advise you on how to deal with your educational stipend when you are doing your taxes next year, sorry! It is actually illegal for me to do so, since I am not a certified public accountant.)

IMPORTANT NOTE: Once you are entered into the Cornell Bursar system, you will receive an email from them regarding the signing of a Disclosure Statement. You will NOT receive ANY stipend until you have completed this statement, so fill it out as soon as you receive the email! Bursar will also send you an email about setting up a direct deposit process for your stipend payments. Again, sign up as soon as you see the email.

[15] Banking Information:

If you receive paper checks for your stipend payment(s), and you intend to deposit those payments into your home account, be sure to bring deposit slips and the correct street address to which to mail your deposit. (I know this sounds obvious, but people do forget these things.)

If you prefer to open an account here, the Tompkins Trust Company (TTC) has branches on campus, and you can easily open a savings account at one of them, which includes a free ATM card. TTC has ATMs all over town, and the savings account fee is only a few bucks a month. Plus, with proper ID, you can cash your check right at the campus bookstore.

[16] Your Summer Address:

If you want to have snail mail sent to / forwarded to Ithaca during your stay here, go to your post office, fill out a temporary change of address form and tell them your temporary address will be:

    Your Name
    CNF REU Program
    Cascadilla Hall
    Cornell University
    Ithaca NY 14853
Be sure to tell them that this address is only good from June 2nd through to August 11th! Once you get here, you'll be able to add your room number, but mail will get to you without it.

[17] CNF REUs, The CNF TCN Short Course:

One of the first things most of you will be doing here is attending the CNF Short Course: Technology & Characterization of the Nanoscale (CNF TCN), from June 5-8. The course is a three and 1/2-day intensive workshop with lectures and lab demos. I'll register you for the course (and pay for it!), so no need for you to do so, but you may want to check out the schedule and find out what it's all about. http://www.cnf.cornell.edu/cnf_tcn_june_2018.html

[18] CNF REUs, New User Training and Initial Equipment Training:

As previously mentioned, your New User Training will occur on Monday and Tuesday, June 11-12. For the rest of that week, we will set up several of your initial equipment trainings (mostly photolithography). I'll hand you the training schedule at your afternoon Check-In on Orientation Day, but it'll also be on the CNF REU web site: http://www.cnf.cornell.edu/cnf5_reuprogram.html

For the rest of your tools, the ones I do not pre-arrange, you will set up trainings yourself working directly with the CNF staff person responsible for that tool. We'll cover how to do that during your New User Training, of course!

PLEASE NOTE: There are four critical ways to avoid trouble in the equipment training arena, aside from the obvious of "forgetting" to dressing appropriately for the cleanroom.

1) DO NOT MISS a scheduled training session or be late to a training session. Especially pay attention to where the training session starts -- outside of or *in* the cleanroom. Keep in mind it takes time to tog up and get into the cleanroom. (This is the #1 way new users miss a training session.) We are unbelievably busy in the summer and if you miss a training session, you may not get back on the schedule for weeks!

2) TELL ME immediately if you DO miss a training session! I'll track down the staff person responsible and get you in their next session.

3) If you need to be trained on something not shown on your initial training list, contact the staff person in charge of that tool via the tool website, once you've successfully completed your New User Training. Be sure to state FIRST that you are a CNF REU intern when you request training. CNF staff know to look out for you.

4) NEVER EVER EVER touch a machine you have not been trained on by CNF staff and CNF STAFF ONLY. NEVER! EVER! I repeat, NEVER! If you do, you will be barred from entering the cleanroom for anywhere from one week to one month. So you can see how, with the program only being ten weeks long, touching things you are not trained to touch, will be very very bad for your research experience. Note that I say "CNF STAFF ONLY" -- your mentor is NOT allowed to train you on tools.

[19] ALL INTERNS, Your Work Schedule:

During the summer, our cleanroom is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Most labs that you will be using are open 24/7 also. See the CNF REU Cleanroom Access Restrictions above. Once you are past the restrictions (the weeks will fly by, trust me), you have seven days x 24 hours a day open to you to work on your project.

While we expect at least 40 hours of work each week, this is absolutely not a 9-5, M-F job. It's a "get as much done as you can get done in ten weeks" job. So you and your mentor will work out a schedule that includes down-time to suit your outside interests, but plenty of time for research too. There will be equipment trainings and the CNF TCN, some tours and a few meetings with CNF staff to help us all keep track of your progress, but for the most part, your time is YOURS to plan out with your research group.

Again, we only expect you to work 40 hours a week!! But please note most especially, as will be stated in your award letter -- taking a class or having another job during the program is *definitely* a no-no!! Ten weeks is nothing in "research time" so no distractions, ok? For one thing, you may only find open tool time during what would have been your class time, and your research always comes first.

At the same time, do NOT spend 80 hours a week on research. Ithaca is a great place to be in the summer. Go outside. Go for a hike. Go for ice cream at the Cornell Dairy Bar. Really. Life is calling and Ithaca is Gorges!


In each REU project, you should have some research aspect that is entirely yours to complete. Your PI and mentor will expect you to jump in and become as independent as possible, as soon as possible. While we are all here to help you succeed, your research success is 95% dependent on how hard you work at it, and that other 5% is dependent on whether or not you can get tool time. You have the restricted period to learn as much as possible from your mentor and PI. Then you have six weeks to prove yourself as a nano-researcher! Cool, huh!?!

ALL INTERNS, SNARK ALERT! As your expectations document will state:

If at any time during these REU Programs, your PI and your Site Director and/or REU Coordinator determine that you are not living up to these expectations, we reserve the right to terminate your award. You will not be required to reimburse us for any expenses, but [1] you will not collect any unpaid stipend, [2] your travel and housing arrangements will be terminated, and [3] you will be sent home at your own expense.

So we don't have time cards and such, but we can tell if you are just goofing off. And we'll drop kick you out of here if you are! (Anti-snark; I have NEVER fired an intern. I'm actually a very nice, understanding person ... for the most part.)

[20] Miscellaneous on Your Research:

Just to warn you on one aspect of the 'real life' experience you are about to have -- it's entirely possible that you will rarely, if ever, see your Principal Investigator (PI). The fact is very few of our PIs ever step foot in the CNF, much less in the cleanroom / labs. That's ok, as the simple truth is they are the idea and funding people, not the hands-on research people. Instead, you'll be getting to know your graduate / postdoc / mentor(s) really well. That person or persons will train you on your research, suggest reading materials, help you problem-solve, and etc.

If your mentor disappears, then we have a real problem and you MUST let me know IMMEDIATELY. If you and your mentor are not compatible, you MUST let me know IMMEDIATELY. Both of these scenarios have occurred and they never get better with time! You must talk to me immediately! It is NOT "whining" to tell me your mentor is a dolt and you want a new one.

I will remind you of the above during the first few weeks, because for some reason, interns continue to NOT tell me that their mentor is a terrible person. You simply have to tell me or we cannot find you a good person!

Also, while you are here researching, you'll be writing everything you do and everything you try in a notebook (CNF REU, made of special dust-free paper, which is allowed into the cleanroom). You'll be working with various resists and wafers, adapting computer programs, etc. All of these parts of the program are owned by your PI and must be given to them at the end of the program. You are welcome to make a copy of your notebook, but you'll have to turn over the notebook itself to your PI or mentor.

[21] Down-Time Possibilities:

The Cornell Engineering REU Programs plan weekend trips to NYC and Niagara Falls (*), and I'll forward those emails to you. Other than that, get together, figure out who has a car, and set up a road trip! Ithaca IS gorges and there are a lot of weekend options for having fun together.

All I ask is -- if you are going to leave Ithaca, please send me a quick email saying when you'll be off-campus, just so I know. This is all part of that delicate balancing act of -- [a] you are all grown-ups now and therefore I trust you to take your research seriously, but [b] we are LEGALLY responsible for you for the summer, because you are in our program. So I need to have some idea if you are going to be gone for a day or two and out of the Greater Ithaca Area. That way if anyone gets hurt or lost or is slacking off, or God forbid a parent calls asking for you -- I'm not blind-sided. Just let me know you'll be away and it's fine to travel as you wish.

PLEASE NOTE! You are NOT asking me for permission to leave town! Talk to your mentor about that. I just need to know where you are.

* If you want to go to the Canadian side of Niagara Falls (or Canada in general), you MUST have your passport with you, if you'd like to get back to the American side! Security is VERY strict about this -- one of our users went to Canada for the day and it took him SIX MONTHS to get back into the USA, because he had no valid identification. So check out -- http://www.tripadvisor.com/Travel-g153339-s602/Canada:Crossing.The.Border.html -- and if you don't have any of the items described under "Adults Travelling [sic] By Land or By Sea" -- do NOT go to Canada! You have been warned, eh?

[22] ALL INTERNS, Health Insurance:

Given that you'll be working in our labs and cleanroom around toxic chemicals and dangerous equipment, you MUST bring proof of health insurance with you, in case something bad happens to you over the summer. Check with your insurance carrier that you are covered here in Ithaca NY. We don't need any surprises if you get hurt. In my almost twenty years of running this program, only one intern has ever gotten injured -- she was rear-ended while out grocery shopping. Luckily, she was not hurt badly and she had all her personal and auto documentation, so "clean up" went smoothly. Let’s be equally safe and prepared!

So, Last Question: (Thank you for replying ASAP!)

[e] What health insurance policy are you covered under? (I don't need policy numbers, just the name of the company holding the policy.)

[23] Checking In, Presentations, and Reports:

Over the summer, as previously mentioned, you MUST stop by my office at least once a week to check in and chat about how things are going. We'll also have the more official check-ins with your mentor on Orientation Day. We'll have two mornings with all the CNF-hosted REU interns, PIs and Mentors, and the CNF staff, and at those, you'll show a few PowerPoint slides on your progress. I'll provide you with a CNF REU PowerPoint template the day you arrive, on your own Cornell memory stick. In August, we'll have our Nano-Convocation here on campus, so you can give your full presentation for your research group and the CNF staff. These presentations will be webcast live and archived, so again, dress professionally! It’s only a few minutes on the schedule, but it is forever on the interwebs.

Finally, you must submit a final report by Friday, August 10th, before you leave campus. The abridged final report rules are on the back of your expectations sheet, and the full rules will be on the web, along with the detailed calendar — http://www.cnf.cornell.edu/cnf5_reuprogram.html

Past reports and convocation presentations for 2016 and 2017 are online: http://www.cnf.cornell.edu/cnf5_reuprogram.html

[24] First REU Assignment:

On Monday, April 30th, I'll be sending you an email detailing your first assignment. I'll be asking you to contact your PI and mentor and then email me, stating concisely in your own words: your research goals, equipment needs, and tentative schedule for meeting your goals. The assignment is due on Thursday, May 31st, and is not graded, but is definitely noticed. Please do not just forward to me an email that your PI or mentor sent to you! I need a couple of paragraphs from you, in your words, telling me what you think you'll be doing this summer.

[25] PARADIM REU Program:
As I mentioned before, we will work together on a lot of our meetings and presentations with the Platform for the Accelerated Realization, Analysis, and Discovery of Interface Materials Research Experience for Undergraduates (PARADIM REU) Program. For instance, the PARADIM REUs will join us on Orientation Day, and at the monthly check-ins, and elsewhere too, I’m sure. While they are part of a different research program, please consider them your summer brothers and sisters. Let's make sure everyone feels welcome!

Ok, I think that's it for now -- whew!! I'll send you a second email requesting the answers to my questions above -- please do answer immediately. And be sure to follow any deadlines Rebecca asks of you after you receive the stipend/travel email.

Thank you for saying YES to the CNF-hosted REU Programs!!! I'm really looking forward to meeting you! I hope that after reading all this -- you are still looking forward to meeting me!

Mama Bear

(Remember -- http://cuinfo.cornell.edu/ is the best place to start looking for answers to questions I didn't answer ... as if.)

The 2018 Interns!

Ms. Sayeeda Aishee
Cornell University
(PI and Project TBA….)

Mr. Vivek Anil
The Pennsylvania State University
2018 CNF REU Intern
PI/Mentor: Gennady Shvets
Project: Topics in nano-biophotonics: Fabrication of plasmonic metasurfaces that attract and spectroscopically interrogate cancer cells

Mr. Miguel Castro-Rivera
Interamerican University of Puerto Rico
2018 PARADIM REU Intern
PI/Mentor: Betul Pamuk
Project: Understanding the structure of IV-VI semiconductors

Mr. Anthony Coleman
Chicago State University
2018 PARADIM REU Intern
PI/Mentor: Hanjong Paik (1 of 2)
Project: MBE growth/system development and XRD characterization

Ms. Stephanie Eberly
North Carolina State University
2018 PARADIM REU Intern
Luca Moreschini
Development and commissioning of a novel ARPES system

Ms. Iryna Glushchenko
Princeton University
2018 PARADIM REU Intern
PI/Mentor: H
anjong Paik (2 of 2)
MBE growth/system development and XRD characterization

Mr. Jordan Howard-Jennings
Harvey Mudd College
2018 CNF REU Intern
PI/Mentor: Christopher Ober
Project: New Photopatterning Materials for Advanced Lithography

Mr. Cesar Lema
New York University
2018 PARADIM REU Intern
PI/Mentor: Don Werder
Project: Growing 2D Transition Metal Dichalogenide (2D-TMDC) Materials for PARADIM Users

Mr. Marcus Marracci
CSU Fullerton
2018 PARADIM REU Intern
PI/Mentor: Pamuk AND Werder
Project: Growing and Designing 2D Transition Metal Dichalogenide (2D-TMDC) Materials for PARADIM Users

Mr. Joshua Romo
University of Dayton
2018 KEP REU Intern
(PI and Project TBA….)

Ms. Sierra Russell
SUNY College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering (Albany)
2018 CNF REU Intern
PI/Mentor: Paul McEuen
Project: Magnetic Film Characterization for Actuating Origami Devices

Mr. Kody Whisnant
Wayne State University
2018 CNF REU Intern
PI/Mentor: Abraham Stroock
Project: Development of MEMS tool to study the physics of water and ice

Mr. Reed Yalisove
University of Michigan-Ann Arbor
2018 CNF REU Intern
PI/Mentor: James Engstrom
Project: Fabricating atomic membranes using ALD

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