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Religion 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.

Funding for Conferences

Funding for Religion conferences and meetings is now available for Religion majors and minors, up to $200 annually. Please email Anita Pace (apace1@swarthmore.edu) for request form. 
*Note:  completed request forms must be submitted at least 30 days before the event.

For more information contact the Religion Department Chair, Professor Gwynn Kessler (gkessle1@swarthmore.edu).

 William J. Carter Grant for Summer Research or Internship 

Maximum Award: $4800
The William J. Carter '47 Religious Harmony Endowment was established in 2011 by a bequest from William J. Carter '47. The fund's purpose is to encourage and promote understanding, harmony and respect among the various religions of the world. This grant is offered to majors and minors in religion whose projects clearly reflect prior academic work in this area. Proposals from religion major and minor 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.

Students interested in applying can direct questions to the Department of Religion Chair, Gwynn Kessler (gkessle1@swarthmore.edu) or the Humanities Division Chair, Peter Baumann (pbauman1@swarthmore.edu).

The online application to apply for support for summer research projects can be accessed through mySwarthmore.  Once logged in, click the "Apply for a Summer Research Grant" link.
For more information on the application process please visit Humanities Division Research Grants and Fellowships

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

Application process opens:  January 18, 2022
Applications deadline:  February 8, 2022 @3:59pm
Award notification:  Mid-March 2022

The Hay-Urban Prize for Summer Internship, Study, or Research in Religion (not offered 2022)

Maximum Award: $4800
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 to assist in supporting at least one religion major or minor student internship, summer study, or research in the area of religion studies. *This opportunity is available every other year.

Students interested in applying can direct questions to the Department of Religion Chair, Gwynn Kessler gkessle1@swarthmore.edu) or the Humanities Division Chair, Peter Baumann (pbauman1@swarthmore.edu).

The online application to apply for support for summer research projects can be accessed through mySwarthmore.  Once logged in, click the "Apply for a Summer Research Grant" link.
For more information on the application process please visit Humanities Division Research Grants and Fellowships

Application process opens:  Not offered 2022
Applications due:  
Award notification:  

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 double-spaced, and should be carefully proofread. Previously submitted papers from Religion courses are acceptable.

Submissions are to be anonymous, please do not put your name on the paper but include your name and essay title in the body of the email.

Please submit your essay to religion@swarthmore.edu.  Only one essay submission per student is permitted.

All submissions are due by Monday, April 25, 2022.

Application process opens:  Tuesday, April 5, 2022
Applications due:  Monday, April 25, 2022
Award notification:  TBA

Other College Funding Opportunities