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The program is open to Tufts undergraduate students, preferably in their sophomore year. Students must be able to commit to two consecutive summers of research while enrolled as an undergraduate Students are not permitted to count the summer following their graduation as the second summer of research. Faculty mentors must be Tufts faculty, and can come from any of the University’s schools.

Other faculty who are interested in becoming mentors for the Laidlaw Scholars program should contact the Office of the Provost at


All students are required to sign a commitment form at the time of submitting their application. In order to be eligible for program funding, scholars must commit to the following:

  • Pursue their research project over two consecutive summers, a five to six week commitment each summer
  • Attend all leadership development activities in person, or, if not possible due to the research experience, attend remotely
  • Actively participate in the research day at the conclusion of each research summer and produce a poster, presentation, or research paper which can be used to explain their research project to different audiences
  • At the conclusion of their second summer, write a short report on the overall learning and leadership outcomes from their experience as a scholar
  • Serve as an ambassador of the program by acting as a mentor to incoming scholars or creating blog posts to promote the program to prospective scholars
  • Keep the central Laidlaw Program informed of their career developments in future years via the scholars’ website

Laidlaw Leader Attributes

Leadership Abilities - Able to lead without authority
- Able to convey purpose and build coalitions
- Cultural intelligence and capacity for empathy
Self-Knowledge and Awareness - Honestly assesses own knowledge and leadership style/preferences
- Known own limitations and acts accordingly
- Learns continually
Effective Communicator - Speaks and writes clearly and confidently
- Able to listen with understanding
- Uses digital connectivity
Critical and Creative Thinker - Able to make effective decisions in complex environments
- Seeks out and fosters innovation and creativity
- Strong intellectual ability
- Turns ideas into action
Collaboration and Team Working - Builds relationships and networks
- Works collaboratively and across boundaries
- Uses emotional intelligence to achieve this
- Capitalizes on the power of diversity
Social and Cultural Intelligence and Awareness - Able to navigate new and foreign situations
- Uses this to build relationships and networks
Resilience and Determination to Achieve - Has energy and impact
- Makes things happen
Research and Project Management Skills

- Able to analyze data and interpret results
- Able to work and think independently
- Prioritizes activities and manages own time