Grants & Prizes

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Studying Religion, you will always have something interesting to talk to people about! The study of religion allows us to investigate the habits, mores, and ethics of cultures -- to see what historical, textual, and normative resources people have for repairing our world.

The Hay-Urban Prize for Summer Internship, Study, or Research in Religion

With a generous gift from Stephen Hay '51 and funds given in honor of P. Linwood Urban's retirement from the College in 1989, the Department of Religion will again offer the Hay-Urban prize of $1,000 to assist in supporting at least one student internship, summer study, or research in the area of religion studies.

Your application should consist of a two-page narrative description of your project and its relationship to your studies at the College, a one-page budget proposal, a recommendation letter on your behalf, and a transcript.

You must also answer the following two questions before you apply to determine if you need to apply for IRB approval:

1) Does your proposed project involve research for your own academic purposes, i.e. the gathering of information that will be discussed in your own analytic paper, thesis, article, or web resource? In other words does it involve something more than just training, service, personal development, and work (possibly research) for others?          

2) If you answered YES, does this research component of your project involve observing, interviewing, photographing, videoing, recording, and/or surveying living people? Note that this does not include simply talking to others for advice on how to proceed with research, e.g. librarians, archivists, and other academics.

*If yes to both questions, please attach the Institutional Review Board (IRB) Application  to your summer fellowship application. Your faculty sponsor should tell you whether you need to attach this document or not. If your project includes research with human subjects is approved, you almost certainly will need to submit this information required by the IRB. If you have any questions about the IRB application and/or processes, please contact Erin Starzyk, the IRB administrator,

Students interested in applying can direct questions to the Chair, Tariq al-Jamil.

Applications must be submitted to the Religion Department Office, Pearson 211, by 2:00 pm, Monday, April 25, 2016. Note: required application form [pdf] is also available in the Religion Department Office.

The Jesse H. Holmes Prize in Religion

The Jesse H. Holmes Prize in Religion of $300, a gift of the late Eleanor S. Clarke of the Class of 1918 and named in honor of Jesse Holmes, Professor of History of Religion and Philosophy at Swarthmore College from 1899 to 1934, is awarded annually to the student who submits the best essay in a competition judged by the Department of Religion.

All Swarthmore College students are eligible to compete, and the essays may be on any topic in the field of religion. Papers must be typewritten, double-spaced, and should be carefully proofread. Papers should normally be between 15 and 30 pages of text.

Papers are to be submitted to the Religion Department office, Pearson 211. The author should not include his/her name on the paper but should sign it with a pseudonym. The author's name and pseudonym should be put in a sealed envelope submitted with the paper. Only one essay submission per student permitted.

The deadline for submission of papers is 2:00 pm, Monday April 25, 2016. Please submit papers to the Religion Department Office, Pearson 211.

William J. Carter '47 Grant for Summer Research or Internship

Maximum Award: $4350

Coordinator: Professor Tariq al-Jamil, Religion (e-mail or call 8054)
Students may apply for support for a summer research project or an internship in keeping with William J. Carter's goal of "encouraging and promoting understanding, harmony, and respect among the various religions of the world." Proposals from students working independently as well as faculty-student collaborative research proposals are eligible for support. Interested students should apply with a letter detailing a proposed project, including estimated costs and a timetable outlining when the work would be done. A letter of recommendation from one faculty member with whom the student has consulted is required. If the opportunity is in the form of an internship, a letter from the sponsoring agency or institution must be included with the Swarthmore faculty letter of recommendation. Priority will be given to majors and minors in Religion and to students whose projects clearly reflect prior academic work in the area.

The Religion Department will review the applications and make a recommendation for funding to the Provost. More

Application process opens Tuesday, January 19, 2016
Applications due Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Other College Funding Opportunities