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Rainbow Science Network

Welcome to the Rainbow Science Network

About the Rainbow Science Network

LGBTQ+ people experience unique challenges in life–in college and at work–and there are additional challenges that come from being a scientist. The Eberly College of Science recognizes the value that diversity brings to the research enterprise, and talented scientists are to be found among the LGBTQ+ community. The RSN is designed to support and facilitate research training for LGBTQ+ undergraduate and graduate students, postdoctoral scholars, and research staff.

The concept is simple: The RSN is a list of faculty and leaders who have undergone two Penn State–provided training courses designed to increase the understanding of issues facing LGBTQ+ people and are committed to maintaining a welcoming and inclusive research group:

The RSN list can be used to help students, postdoctoral scholars, and research staff identify a group where they can bring their whole self to the research environment; however, there is no requirement to be ‘out’. Trainees can find additional details about research-active faculty and how to apply for research opportunities on departmental websites or through the programs listed below.

Please note: In all of these programs, consideration for admission does not involve being part of the LGBTQ+ community. You are under no obligation to disclose your status and allies are welcome.

Undergraduate Research Opportunities in the Sciences

Information about department-specific research including areas of research, independent research opportunities, research for course credit, and summer research opportunities.

Most research opportunities do not require you to obtain a fellowship, but there are specific opportunities that allow you to travel for research purposes, or to conduct paid research over the summer.



Additional Resources

While a commitment to maintain an inclusive environment has been made by RSN members, there is no guarantee that disputes and bias events will not happen. However, through the training that RSN faculty members receive, they should have a deeper understanding of bias incidents that might occur and be in a good position to mediate a solution. RSN membership does not absolve research group members of their mandated reporter obligations. The RSN Resources page contains information on Penn State anti-discrimination policies, in addition to resources to report wrongdoing and information on the Eberly College of Science ombuds program where you can seek independent informal advice.