OK.. I guess I am going to get a lot of flak and suspicion for asking this as I have to bring up here an unusual situation. But opportunities have arisen unexpectedly for my stage of career, and I am getting a lot of contradicting advice/opinions. I am 2nd year undergraduate from the UK and published 2 papers in my first year (co-authored with a retired professor from Texas A& M University). We were each lead author on one and they were accepted in respected journal in the computational and natural sciences. I cannot be more specific for reasons soon to be clear. It was work on solution to an obscure neurocomputation problem, for me to practise publication skills and I like to have big sideline projects also to keep my creativity high. I received word from my co-author that two of the leading academics in this field (I will call “the pair”) have published a book (not a paper yet), outlining the exact some proposal/solution and even similar jargon to our paper. One of them is a minor celebrity for a scientist. TV shows, Ted talks and I dare not say more, but they are practically on tour with this solution as we speak. Because my co-author thinks we were plagarised, and so do others, he is setting up an independent research group to compete rather than get into who stole from who. The reason to compete is he thinks we have way more depth/ideas and correct approaches than the plagiarized version. The group will be composed of the five scientists who specialize in this area (none who were referenced by “the pair”). As lead author of the paper with the actual worked solution I have been asked to play a major role and step up with my ideas for some finely tuned aspects of the problem solutions. However my family are not so keen. One of them is a scientist and says she never heard of a student being paid a wage of a research grant. The grant is awarded and qualified researchers are employed. That’s standard procedure and there is no way around that she thinks. She informed me there is one exception to this. That would be if my own university wanted to include me in a research project, then I could be paid as a student with a lower wage than a qualified researcher. So I guess that is my question. I do need paid some type of living expense if I get involved here for various practical reasons. Does anybody have knowledge or experience of this type of specific and probably very unusual scenario ? Does it have to by my own university? Is it possible for a student to be paid of a research grant ?