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Opportunities & Resources

As a full-time faculty member at Swarthmore, you have access to several on campus and off campus resources that help support your curricular, pedagogical and research initiatives.

Here you can find information on Support for Reading/Writing Groups, Council on Undergraduate Research (CUR), Regional Faculty of Color Working Group, TriCo Mellon Brainstorming Seed Grants, The Alliance to Advance Liberal Arts Colleges, and Research/Writing Support: NCFDD Member Benefits.

TriCo Mellon Brainstorming Seed Grant (Deadline: early April)

These Seed Grants support faculty projects related to research, teaching, curriculum, or service/governance. The grants are flexible as to the nature and scope of the initiatives funded. Projects could include faculty working groups, topical workshops or symposia, "outreach" activities, invited speakers, travel money for faculty training, etc. The Steering Committee particularly welcomes collaborative proposals that bring together faculty from the three colleges as well as proposals that are difficult to fund through conventional sources. All faculty members at Bryn Mawr, Haverford and Swarthmore Colleges are eligible to apply.

Budget requests for a Seed grant can be as high as $3,000, and if you have received a Seed grant in the past, you are eligible to submit a request for a grant renewal. (Funds can be provided for up to 3 years for a maximum of $9000 in financial support.) The one limitation from the Andrew Mellon Foundation is that the budgeted money cannot be used for faculty stipends.

Please visit the Mellon Trico website for more information. You also will find lists of past Seed Grant projects funded by the Mellon Tri-College Faculty Forum Grant at this site.

The Seed Grant application should include the following:

  1. Cover sheet (attached to this message and on the website)
  2. Faculty member(s)involved in the project
  3. A description of the proposed initiative (2 pages max.)
  4. A detailed budget (travel expenses are permissible, but faculty stipends are not funded.)

Please submit your application electronically to Joanne Kimpel at (You will receive confirmation of your submission.) We look forward to hearing from you, and we encourage you to apply. This is a great opportunity to collaborate with tri-co colleagues, the application process is not particularly onerous, and many wonderful projects have started life through this funding.

Contact:  Rachel Buurma, Department of English Literature, Swarthmore College and Chair of the Mellon Tri-Co Faculty Forum
Lynne Butler, Department of Mathematics, Haverford College and Member of the Mellon Tri-co Faculty Forum

The Alliance to Advance Liberal Arts Colleges

The Alliance to Advance Liberal Arts Colleges (AALAC) is a group of twenty-five institutions striving to advance liberal arts education through collective efforts to support faculty research and teaching. AALAC aims to enhance the overall experience of students and to develop faculty leadership. Originally funded through a Mellon Foundation grant, the schools that comprise AALAC continue to explore the role of their institutions in the landscape of higher education and thereby to address more effectively the pressing challenges facing American liberal arts colleges.

Swarthmore has been a member of this collective since its inception in 2006. AALAC hosts annual multi-institution faculty development workshops. The most recent assembly of AALAC institutions was held at Carleton College in 2019 with a theme of The Challenges of Balancing the Humanities, STEM, and Other Fields of the Liberal Arts.

Information on proposing future faculty workshops and an archive of past workshops can be found on the AALAC website. For more information, contact Janet Tobin, Associate Dean for Academic Administration at Amherst College, at

Research/Writing Support: NCFDD Member Benefits

Swarthmore's NCFDD Institutional Membership provides an external mentoring community designed to help post-docs and faculty members of all ranks increase research and writing productivity and improve work-life balance.

Membership Benefits include:

  • The Monday Motivator (weekly productivity email)
  • Access to monthly core curriculum
  • Access to guest expert webinars
  • Access to multi-week courses
  • Access to the Career Center
  • Audio and video recordings, slides and transcripts from all webinars
  • Access to moderated monthly writing challenges and monthly mentor matches

To register and access member benefits visit the National Center for Faculty Development & Diversity website.

More information on membership benefits and how to enroll in the NCFDD program