How the Freshman Research & Creative Awards Program Works

Contact Information
Portrait: Barbara Schwab

Barbara Schwab
Assistant Director
115 Johnston Hall
101 Pleasant St SE

The CLA Freshman Research and Creative Awards Program is a unique recruitment program among peer institutions in its focus on early mentored experiences for first-year students.

The program offers a stipend for highly talented new freshman to participate in some part of the faculty member's ongoing scholarly work. Students are matched by interest area with a participating faculty member.

We recognize that research and creative opportunities will vary widely in nature, reflecting the richness of disciplines and faculty interests in CLA, and we welcome that variety.

Program goals

  • showcase CLA's wide range of scholarship and highlight exceptional faculty members
  • expand opportunities for talented first-year students to engage with faculty members
  • recruit highly talented and diverse students to the liberal arts

The goal is not necessarily for freshmen to pursue individual research under the guidance of faculty but rather for faculty to share the sense of discovery, scholarly passion, and intellectual challenges they experience through research and creative work.

CLA faculty members
may submit a proposal
for the Freshman
Research & Creative
Activity program.

We want students to experience the excitement of creative scholarly inquiry; we want to inspire and engage you by providing an opportunity to join in the work that inspires and engages our faculty.

Program details

  1. The Office of the Associate Dean for Undergraduate Programs will match up to 70 outstanding admitted students in the incoming freshman class on a one-to-one basis with CLA faculty.
  2. Students participate in the research or creative opportunity during the spring semester of their freshman year.
  3. Students receive a stipend of $2,000 to be paid during that semester. Faculty members will receive up to $250 for related expenses.
  4. Students should expect to devote up to 10 hours each week in the research or creative experience.
  5. Students are required to submit a poster presentation, short report (3 pages), or other agreed-upon outcome to the faculty member (with a copy to the Office of Undergraduate Programs) at the end of the semester.
  6. Students may register for 1 - 2 credits in order to engage in research work beyond 10 hours/week, or to complete a more substantial report. Faculty members cannot require that students engage in additional work or register for credit. If a faculty member agrees to a student registering for credit (which will appear on the student's transcript), the faculty member is responsible for relevant and timely grading, etc. of the student work as for any other student registration.