Research and Scholarly opportunities for Sewanee students

Collaborative research and scholarship is a fundamental activity for students and faculty at this institution. Working with a faculty member on collaborative research, scholarship, and artistic productions can be one of the most rewarding experiences of a Sewanee student's time in college. You can find out about research or scholarship that a professor is doing by looking at their web page or at this list of faculty publications. You may also read about some of the labs and studios at Sewanee. If a professor mentions a research project that he or she finds exciting, ask how you can get involved. That direct approach is often the best one.

The Office of Undergraduate Research and Scholarship sponsors Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowships for Sewanee students who wish to spend their summer obtaining research experience. Typically, these research experiences last for 6-8 weeks while students live on campus and spend 32-40 hours a week involved in research, scholarship, or creative activity mentored by a faculty member. Student participants in this program also attend workshops on research, career development, and self-care and engage in various social and recreational events. Students receive a stipend of $400 a week and must pay their own room and board expenses. Students may apply for these summer fellowships on Handshake by March 1. Once selected for a SURF position, applications for funding should be submitted by April 1. Here are some FAQs for students about the SURF program, and information for faculty is here.

Students can apply for funding through fellowships to do social science research during the summer through the Biehl International Research Fellowship. This research fellowship for students interested in conducting an independent social science research project outside of the United States. Only Sewanee students who are pursuing a major or minor in a social science are eligible to apply. Students design their own research topic; projects should facilitate substantial contact with the society to be studied and should be focused in one area, or a few closely-related locales, rather than several sites. 

Another research fellowship for Sewanee students only is the Gessell Fellowship in Social Ethics. It offers funds to enable an independent research project in social theory or social ethics. The project may be an academic research paper or field experience. Projects with a local focus are particularly encouraged. The award recipient will complete the project during the course of the academic year, and will submit a final paper and give a public presentation on their research topic to the Sewanee community in April. Awards alternate yearly between students from the College (odd years) and the School of Theology (even years.)

To learn about many other research opportunities available to Sewanee students, visit the Sewanee Career Readiness website, which provides information about summer research fellowships with Sewanee faculty; funding for summer research fellowships; and information about summer internships and summer research projects that Sewanee students have done in recent years.

If you would like to discuss opportunities generally, or if you have any questions about how to get involved, please contact the Office of Undergraduate Research and Scholarship.

  • The office of the Dean of the College coordinates the application process for a number of prestigious external fellowships for students at every level of their academic career. Such funding can be used for research with faculty at Sewanee or beyond, or even for an independent project of your own design. Here is information about these opportunities.
  • The Appalachian College Association offers the Ledford Scholarship which provides financial assistance for summer research in the areas of laboratory and field work, interviews, analyzing special collections, participant observation and other.
  • The Council on Undergraduate Research provides information about undergraduate research opportunities.
  • NSF Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU)--These opportunities exist in almost all NSF-supported fields at universities around the country.
  • The InfoEd SPIN funding opportunities data base provides great information if you search using the phrase "research experiences for undergraduates."
  • DADD RISE program--Travel to a German university or institute and get paid to do research in science or engineering for the summer
  • Department of Energy programs--There are several programs sponsored by the DOE, including the Science Undergraduate Laboratory Internship (SULI), the DOE Scholars Program and the Mickey Leland Energy Fellowship
  • Department of Homeland Security programs--DHS offers summer research internships at labs across the country
  • The WebGURU (Guide for Undergraduate Education), maintained by Northeastern University, provides useful information and leads about undergraduate research opportunities.
  • Professor Rob Bachman maintains a list of research opportunities at schools around the country in a variety of biomedical/science and non-science fields. Please contact him to receive his latest list.
  • Seattle University also maintains an extensive list of opportunities which may be viewed here.


For additional information about undergraduate research at Sewanee, please contact the Office of Undergraduate Research and Scholarship.