Dr. Zhaoshuo Jiang, an Assistant Professor of Civil Engineering, received a National Science Foundation (NSF) award of $145,000 for three years (2017-2020) to provide a Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) Site program entitled, Collaborative Research: Integrated Academia-Industry Research Experience for Undergraduate in Smart Structure Technology. Currently, there is a significant gap between the engineering science with fundamental research in academia and engineering practice with potential implementation in the industry. This REU program will train undergraduate students to serve as the catalysts to facilitate the research infusion between academic and industrial partners. This student-driven joint venture between academia and industry will establish a virtuous circle for knowledge exchange and contribute to advancing both fundamental research and implementation of Smart Structure Technology. In addition, this REU program will provide engineering undergraduate students a unique research experience in both academic and industrial settings through cooperative research projects with the industrial partners. Experiencing research in both worlds is expected to help students transition from a relatively dependent status to an independent a status as their competence level increases. The model developed through this REU program will help to exemplify the establishment of a sustainable collaboration model between academia and industry that helps address the nation's need for mature, independent, informed, and globally competitive science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) professionals and is adapted to other disciplines.