undergraduate research award
2016-2017 deadlines can be found here. Information on Taft-eligibility can be found here.
undergraduate research award
Consistent with the university-wide goal of increasing the amount and quality
of undergraduate research and the Taft Research Center’s mission to provide
competitive research support, this competitive program supports undergraduate
research excellence by offering an award of $2,000 to outstanding undergraduate
scholars. This advanced learning experience is designed to create incentives
for advanced research opportunities at the undergraduate level and to promote
both an undergraduate intellectual community and scholarship in the humanities,
broadly conceived. All awardees will be required to participate in the Taft
Undergraduate Club on a monthly basis. Senior undergraduates, directed by a
faculty mentor, will develop substantial and creative independent research
projects, apart from any other coursework, which is intended to culminate in a
thesis or expository work presented at the humanitiesNOW Graduate Conference in
Upon the successful completion of the terms of the grant, awardees will receive
$2,000 upon graduation from the University. Structured in this way, awards do
not interfere with a student’s loan considerations. If the student’s project
includes significant research costs, up to fifty percent of the award may be
used to offset those costs, on a reimbursement basis.
In addition, participating faculty members will receive $500 in remuneration
for their time spent mentoring students. Mentor payments will be paid out
during the same cycle as the student, i.e. following graduation, as part of
their regular payment schedule from the University.
Students are required to engage in their particular research projects and
present their research at the humanitiesNOW and the University Undergraduate
Research Conference, both held in the spring. They will also meet once a month,
as a cohort, to discuss their projects, intellectual or other related issues,
as the core of the Taft Undergraduate Club. Students are required to meet no
less than once per month with their faculty mentor and at least twice during
the year with the Taft Faculty Chair and Center Director (typically as part of
their monthly meetings).
Awardees are required to register for three (3) credit hours per semester, for
two sequential semesters, under their department's designated Taft
thesis/research course section. The three (3) credit hour independent study
course may serve as an alternative opportunity to fulfill capstone requirements
based on department decision.
Failure to comply with the above requirement may result in a reduction or loss
of the award.
Students in their junior year, majoring in one of the Taft departments are
eligible to apply for this award but must be in contact with the undergraduate
program director for their discipline and, if different, a faculty mentor. This
includes students entering into a 4+1 MA program though it is open to all
students entering their senior year. Applicants must have a minimum 3.5 overall
grade point average to be considered for this program.
guidelines for selection
In case there are more applicants than slots available to grant this award, the
Taft Student Awards Committee will consider applicants in two pools. The first will
be only for minority applicants, hereby denoted the set-aside pool (diversity
fellowships). This set-aside pool of three (3) awards is dedicated to minority
applicants. In all cases, if an eligible applicant does not receive an award
from the set-aside pool, the applicant will still be considered for an award
from the open pool.
Applications will be evaluated for:
- The quality or promise of
quality of the applicant's work as a scholar or creative writer.
- The significance of the
contribution that the proposed project will make to the applicant's
intellectual development in their chosen field of study.
- The conception, definition,
organization, and description of the proposed project.
- The current state of the
research, the schedule to do the research, and the timeliness of the grant
to ensuring the completion of the project.
- The likelihood that the
applicant will complete the project.
- The manner in which the
application fulfills the stated requirement.
- The letters of support
required from the faculty mentor and one other faculty member in their
- Grade transcript and
evidence of academic achievement.
terms of the grant
Grant winners are required to complete all of the following:
(1) Apply for a nationally competitive award over the summer, before the start
of the fall term. (For more information, see the Taft Program Coordinator
and/or the Office of Nationally Competitive Awards).
(2) Meet with their research cohort at least once a month during the academic
year, to discuss their projects, intellectual or other related issues, as the
core of the Taft Undergraduate Club.
(3) Meet at least twice during the year with the Taft Faculty Chair and Center
Director (typically as part of their monthly meetings).
(4) Meet no less than twice per month with their faculty mentor
(5) Meet with all current Center Fellows from their department, to discuss
(6) Students are required present their research at the humanitiesNOW Graduate
Conference and the University Undergraduate Research Conference (URSC +
PRaISE), held in the spring.
*** Note: Monies processed as fellowship payments are not reported to the IRS,
as there is not form for reporting that as income. As such, you will not
receive any tax form (ie.1099-M) from the university. However, fellowship
monies are taxable and recipients of such payments should self-report this as
income to the IRS and plan to pay the appropriate taxes.