For CUR, advocacy means bringing the CUR message to lawmakers in Washington, DC. CUR engages in advocacy through many avenues. Examples include the following:
  • Posters on the Hill is a central focus of CUR’s advocacy efforts at the federal level. During Posters on the Hill, 60 teams of students from across the country come to Washington, DC, to present their research and demonstrate the value, significance, and impact of undergraduate researchers. Lawmakers and staff flood to this annual evening reception on Capitol Hill to learn from their constituents. During the day, the students visit their congressional delegations to convey their unified message on the importance of undergraduate research.
  • Targeted outreach to Congress and the White House is conducted on an ongoing basis by CUR staff, members of the CUR Executive Board Advocacy Committee, and other CUR members from key congressional districts. This outreach is done throughout the year, such as in advance or on the eve of important legislative action, when CUR members come to the area for events such as CUR Dialogues, and during the August congressional recess when U.S. legislative staff members may have more time to focus on the subject of undergraduate research.
  • Correspondence addressed to Congress and the White House is another example of how CUR’s advocacy efforts related to U.S. federal policy. CUR submits formal letters in support of programming that is critical to undergraduate research across all disciplines and weighs in formally on relevant legislation. These letters are aimed at both Congress and the White House, affecting both authorizations and appropriations.
  • CUR joins in coalitions with colleague organizations to advance specific initiatives concerning undergraduate research support. The voice of many is always stronger than the voice of one. Whether the topic is broad, such as nondefense discretionary spending, or narrow, such as funding for the National Science Foundation or the National Endowment for the Arts, CUR lends its name to collective causes that seek to advance undergraduate research through larger funding efforts.
Bose Washington Partners and CUR
The Council on Undergraduate Research (CUR) also has contracted with Bose Washington Partners (BWP) to provide research and services to CUR on education and advocacy. BWP provides CUR and its members with important action alerts, legislative summaries, event summaries, and the electronic newsletter This Week in Washington. To view these valuable resources, please visit the BWP updates webpage.