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College and University Awards

GRADUATE STUDENT AWARDS

Eligible students who wish to be nominated for teaching, dissertation, or research awards at the College and University levels should submit the required materials to the Graduate Studies Program Assistant by June 1 of the year in advance of the award deadline.  Once students have been selected for nomination, the Graduate Studies Program Assistant will assemble the nomination packet in collaboration with the Director of Graduate Studies and Department Head.

Awards at the University Level

Harold F. Martin Graduate Assistant Outstanding Teaching Award

Jointly sponsored by the Graduate School and the Office of the Vice President and Dean for Undergraduate Education, this award recognizes graduate assistants for outstanding teaching performance.  The award consists of a certificate and $500 presented at the spring Student Award Ceremony.  Awards are disbursed through the recipient’s Bursar Account in accordance with federal financial aid regulations.

Eligibility: Students who have taught undergraduate courses with sole responsibility for at least two semesters within the last two years, and who will be registered in the spring semester, are eligible for nomination for this award. 

Materials: Students should submit the following to the Graduate Studies Program Assistant:

  • a one-page résumé that highlights his/her teaching activities and describes his/her teaching philosophy
  • up to three supporting documents, such as letters of support from teaching supervisors or testimonials from students taught (letters of support must provide name and contact information of author, including address and e-mail address)

Once these materials have been received, the Graduate Studies Program Assistant, Director of Graduate Studies, and Department Head will complete the Verification Form, Nomination Form, and SRTE Summary required as part of the application portfolio.

 

Alumni Association Dissertation Award

This award seeks to provide funding and recognition to full-time doctoral students who have passed their comprehensive exams, who have received approval of the dissertation topic, and are within their final year.  Recipients will be honored at the Graduate School Alumni Society’s Annual Spring Social and Recognition Program and will receive a $5,000 award disbursed to his/her Bursar Account in accordance with federal financial aid regulations.

Eligibility: To be eligible for nomination, the student must have (1) completed all coursework and language requirements; (2) passed the comprehensive examination; (3) received approval of the dissertation topic; (4) enrolled in PHIL 601; and (5) entered their final year of study.

Materials: Students should submit the following to the Graduate Studies Program Assistant:

  • a descriptive summary of the dissertation topic and significant aspects of the work suitable for an audience of educated lay people (maximum two pages)
  • a letter of reference from the Dissertation Advisor evaluating the merits of the proposed project and discussing the contributions of the student to his/her field (i.e. presentations, papers, awards, etc.) and a confirming statement that the student is within his/her final year of study
  • an unofficial transcript of graduate work completed at Penn State
  • a concise biography including information such as awards, memberships in professional associations, special professional recognition, etc. (maximum two pages)

Once these materials have been received, the Graduate Studies Program Assistant, Director of Graduate Studies, and Department Head will complete the Coversheet required as part of the application portfolio.

 

Awards at the College Level

Denise Haunani Solomon Outstanding Teaching Award for Graduate Students

This award recognizes graduate assistants for outstanding teaching performance.  Awards are disbursed through the recipient’s Bursar Account in accordance with federal financial aid regulations.

Eligibility: Students who have taught undergraduate courses with sole responsibility for at least two semesters within the last two years, and who will be registered in the spring semester, are eligible for nomination for this award. 

Materials: Students should submit the following to the Graduate Studies Program Assistant:

  • a one-page résumé that highlights his/her teaching activities and describes his/her teaching philosophy
  • up to three supporting documents, such as letters of support from teaching supervisors or testimonials from students taught (must provide name and contact information of author)

Once these materials have been received, the Graduate Studies Program Assistant, Director of Graduate Studies, and Department Head will complete the Verification Form, Nomination Form, and SRTE Summary required as part of the application portfolio.

 

Raymond Lombra Graduate Student Award for Excellence in Research in the Humanities and Social Science

This award recognizes high quality contributions to the humanities and social sciences by enrolled graduate students working toward their advanced degrees.  This honor is bestowed for the best article of book published or forthcoming by a graduate student registered in the College of the Liberal Arts.

Eligibility: To be eligible for nomination, the student must have published a book or article (or have such a publication forthcoming) in the current calendar year.  Also, the student must be the sole author or the senior author of the publication.

Note: Papers should be published in refereed journals.  For forthcoming publications, all requested revisions must be complete by the time of the student’s nomination.

Materials: Students should submit the following to the Graduate Studies Program Assistant:

  • a current Curriculum Vitae
  • a copy of the article or book
    • if publication is forthcoming, the acceptance letter must be included
    • for an article, include the following journal information:
      • Journal circulation
      • Relative journal ranking as a publication outlet in the disciplinary area
      • Number of journal articles accepted annually
      • Number of journal articles submitted annually
      • Journal establishment date
  • For a book, include information regarding the quality of the press

Once these materials have been received, the Graduate Studies Program Assistant, Director of Graduate Studies, and Department Head will complete the Coversheet and Nomination Statement (1-2 pages) required as part of the application portfolio.

 

The Sheila Burkett Noakes and Douglas T. Noakes, Jr. Graduate Fellowship

The Sheila Burkett Noakes and Douglas T. Noakes, Jr. Graduate Fellowship is awarded to a graduate student pursuing a Ph.D. in the College of the Liberal Arts who exhibits academic excellence. The student may be pursuing any topic of inquiry in his or her program of research, with the key criterion being excellent performance in the graduate program and future potential.

The fellowship, with a stipend of at least $18,765 (current grade 13), is made possible by an endowed gift from Sheila Burkett Noakes and Douglas T. Noakes, Jr. The recipient’s tuition will be covered by a GIA and the College will pay the institution’s portion of health insurance, with the balance to be deducted from the student’s stipend.

Requirements:

  • Student must have passed the candidacy exam.
  • Student must exhibit academic excellence.

How to nominate a student: The director of graduate studies from each program may nominate no more than two candidates, as appropriate. Nominations should be submitted as a PDF email attachment to Keshia Kennelley (kak43@psu.edu) or hardcopy via campus mail to 105 Sparks Building.

Nominations should include:

  • Summary/lay-abstract of the dissertation (no more than two pages).
  • Assessments by the Graduate Director on student’s progress, potential and career plan (no more than one page).

Deadlines: Department deadline to contact Director of Graduate Studies of intent to be nominated is January 15 of each year; College deadline is February 16 of each year; announcement of recipients of award is about one month later.


College Dissertation Support Competition

This award is provided each semester as support for one of the following:

  • $2,000 toward research-related expenditures associated with a dissertation (e.g. travel to a specialized collection or use of special software unavailable through university resources)
  • $4,000 toward release time from regular teaching responsibilities for one semester (this release is in addition to the Humanities Dissertation Release)

Note: Students who are awarded a dissertation release must participate in the following spring’s Graduation Exhibition as a condition of the release.

Eligibility: In order to be eligible for this award, a student (1) must have an approved dissertation proposal by the end of the semester in which the application is made; (2) must be in residence; and (3) must have already taken their Humanities Dissertation Release.

Application: To apply for this award, students must access and complete the Electronic Dissertation Proposal Grant Request Application, which can be found by visiting https://rgso.la.psu.edu.

The application includes the following sections:

  • General Information - competition semester, purpose of support (research or release time), student name, email address, director of graduate studies
  • Dissertation Information - title and semester the proposal approved
  • Narrative - description of the thesis, accessible to non-specialist readers, limited to 1000 words
  • Work plan - 500 words or less
  • Research Expenses - (for those not applying for release time) an itemized budget is required
  • Funding from other sources
  • Proposed timing of requested expenditures
  • Listing of any past or pending financial support
  • Vita - limited to 500 words (approximately 2 single-spaced pages)

After submitting the electronic application, students must notify the Director of Graduate Studies that the application is ready for review.

Deadlines: Applications for the fall must be received by September 30, and applications for the spring must be received by March 15; should these dates fall on a weekend or holiday, the deadline will be moved to the next business day.

 

Crawford Family Fellowship in Ethical Inquiry

This award, made possible by an endowment by the Crawford family and a scholarship from the Rock Ethics Institute, provides a one-year fellowship and research award to a student who is performing graduate work on the ethical dimensions of a topic in a discipline in the College of the Liberal Arts.  Awardees will be given the title of Rock Ethics Institute Fellow.

Eligibility: To be eligible for nomination, a student must have (1) successfully passed the comprehensive examination; (2) received approval of a dissertation topic which involves work that can be construed to fall under the umbrella of “ethical inquiry;” and (3) consistently exhibited academic excellence.  These requirements must be met by August 15 of the academic year in which the fellowship will be awarded.

Materials: Students should submit to the Graduate Studies Program Assistant a descriptive summary/abstract of the dissertation topic or program inquiry and significant aspects of the work suitable for an audience of educated lay people (maximum two pages).  Once the summary has been received, the Director of Graduate Studies will complete an assessment of student progress, potential, and career plan as required as part of the application portfolio (maximum one page).

Deadlines: Nominations must be received by March 1, with awardees being announced around April 1.

 

Humanities Institute Graduate Student Summer Residency

This award, sponsored by the Humanities Institute, provides a $4,000 summer stipend and the use of an office in Ihlseng Cottage with the intention of allowing a graduate student to devote the summer session to work on his/her dissertation.  This award requires that the student remain in residence at University Park for the duration of the grant period.

Eligibility: To be eligible for this award, students must be (1) seeking a terminal degree in an arts or humanities program at Penn State; (2) must propose projects directly related to work on a dissertation; (3) must be in residence for the summer; and (4) must not be teaching or otherwise employed during the funded summer session.  A strong preference will be given to students nearing the completion of their terminal degree and those with proposals that are interdisciplinary in nature.

Application: Students should submit the following to the Graduate Studies Program Assistant:

  • Cover page with name, program and degree sought, contact information (including campus address), project title, and expected date of dissertation defense and graduation
  • Description of and rationale for the project and timetable for completion (maximum four pages, double-spaced, 12-pt. font)
  • Curriculum Vitae (maximum three pages)
  • Letter of recommendation from student’s dissertation committee chair

Once these items have been received, the Graduate Studies Program Assistant will assemble the application portfolio and submit it, via email, to the Humanities Institute for review.