William and Mary

Freshman Summer Project Guidelines

Most of the funding currently available to support undergraduate research at William and Mary is awarded for advanced research conducted by upper-level students in the areas of their declared majors. In contrast, the Freshman Monroe grants are intended explicitly to augment the pre-major, general education experience of first-year Monroe Scholars.

For the summer of 2014, the Monroe Scholars Program will provide stipends of $1,000 to approximately 50 first-year Monroe Scholars to undertake projects that extend or build on topics that have been introduced in their freshman classes.

Before You Apply

Please be sure to read the Guidelines below carefully before you begin the application.

NOTE: We strongly recommend that both upperclass and freshman Monroe Scholars make an appointment to meet with a Swem Research Librarian unless their proposed project is a continuation of science labwork. 

Successful applicants will each devote a minimum of 2 full-time weeks to their projects (or the equivalent, e.g., 4 half-time weeks), although many projects may take longer than this and it is important that students propose a length of time that is sufficient to accomplish their stated objectives. Each successful applicant will receive a stipend of $1,000. Because the stipend is intended to buy the student's time for two weeks, applicants are not required to submit detailed project budgets or justify expenses.

  1. The application process is entirely online this year. Please watch your email for the link to the proposal form. The application is due by 12:00 noon on Wednesday, February 19, 2014. In putting together the proposal, each applicant must consult with an advisor who is a William & Mary faculty member knowledgeable about the topic.  This advisor may be - but does not have to be - the instructor of the course that inspired the proposed project. If you have questions about finding an advisor, please email [[lmgrim, Lisa]].
  2. Students may propose topics that are tied to either their Fall 2013 or Spring 2014 courses, but all projects must be specifically tied to one or more of the courses they have taken. For example, if a student has studied a film made by Alfred Hitchcock in a freshman seminar, he or she may propose to conduct a comprehensive study of all of the films made by that director. Similarly, if a student has studied volcanoes, or a specific statistical technique, environmental regulation, or religious practice in a freshman course, he or she may propose a project that extends or builds on this experience. The key criteria here are "extends or builds on": for example, a student who has not studied Japanese art in a freshman course may not propose a project on this subject for this scholarship. Please note that travel is not required.
  3. Each successful applicant must :
    a)  spend a minimum of two full weeks on their research
    b) post a brief abstract of the Monroe project to the Freshman Monroe blog 
    c) post a minimum of three additional entries to the Freshman Monroe blog throughout the course of the research during the summer, the last of which will be a summary of your research 
    d) present their work at the Charles Center-sponsored Summer Research Showcase event in the fall.

Read the FAQ for more information.

William and Mary 1693 Scholars are not eligible to apply for the Freshman Monroe grant.

Samples of Successful Freshman Monroe Research Proposals

Nicky Bell: An Analysis of Grassroots  Movements in Spain as a Response to the 11-M Madrid Train Bombings (Hispanic Studies 207 with Prof. Arwari)
Click here to read Nicky's blog posts

Adam Lerner: The Role of Free Will in American Political Thought (Government 392 with Prof. Stow)
Click here to read Adam's blog posts