By the Numbers: Undergraduates share their research

Work by a record 436 students was featured in the Fall Research Expo sponsored by the Center for Undergraduate Research and Fellowships.

A student discusses their poster with others at the CURF poster expo.
Sponsored by the Center for Undergraduate Research and Fellowships, the 2023 Fall Research Expo showcased work by a record 436 undergraduates, their 381 posters set up on three floors of Houston Hall. Daniella Oyenuga, a second-year in the College of Arts & Sciences, presented her research on the neurobiology of stress resilience.

Setting new participation records, 436 undergraduates presented their research during the Fall Research Expo, this year expanding to three floors of historic Houston Hall.

Sponsored by the Center for Undergraduate Research and Fellowships (CURF), the Expo featured 381 posters highlighting student research projects involving faculty from all 12 of Penn’s Schools. The event, which started in 2007 with 18 posters, is open to all Penn undergraduates who want to share their research with their peers and the Penn community.

Houston Hall was filled with animated conversations during the Sept. 18 event, as student researchers stood by their posters and answered questions posed by some of the 1,000 attendees.

“These students have been given the opportunity to work with world-class faculty to address some of the biggest, most important crises and challenges we're facing in the world today, and to make real headway in solving those problems,” says Ann Vernon-Grey, CURF’s senior associate director for undergraduate research. “When you step into the room you can feel the excitement and, frankly, hope for being able to effect change. It’s exhilarating and inspirational.”

In addition to the in-person event, an online archive of each research project, including the students’ posters and summaries, is available on the CURF website Penn Presents.

    • 436

      Number of student participants

    • 2026

      Class with the most participants

    • 381

      Number of posters

    • 1,143

      Linear feet of posters

    • 12/224

      Schools/Departments involved

    • 1,000+

      Number of visitors at the Expo

    • 1,500

      Cookies consumed

    • 14

      Countries where students conducted research: the United States, Argentina, Australia, France, Greenland, Netherlands, New Zealand, Peru, Philippines, Switzerland, Thailand, Trinidad and Tobago, Turkey, and the United Kingdom.

    • 150,000+

      Hours of research represented

    • $1.5+ million

      Amount of grant funding represented