Funding & Awards
Graduate Funding & Fellowships Resources Heading link
Funding and Awards Heading link
Undergraduate Student Department Awards
These awards and scholarships are available to English Majors each spring semester.
If you have any questions about eligibility or would like to discuss your submission, please feel free to contact the Office of Undergraduate Studies in English. Students may apply to multiple awards (e.g. both the Critical and Creative Writing awards); however, if interested in applying for both, students must fill out each application separately.)
The Deadline for Spring 2022 is 11:59 pm April 1, 2022
Anne Hopewell Selby Critical Essay Writing Award: $500
This award recognizes outstanding achievement in critical writing by undergraduate English majors. Each student may submit a sample of no more than five pages of critical writing. Excerpts from longer works are welcome as long as they do not exceed the five-page limit. Neither the student’s name nor any other identifying information should appear on any of the pages of the submission. Winners and finalists for these awards will be selected by the Department of English’s Undergraduate Studies Committee.
Application Form for the Selby Critical Essay Writing Award
Submit application for the Selby Critical Essay Writing Award
Paul Carroll Creative Writing Award: $250
This award recognizes outstanding achievement in creative writing by undergraduate English majors. Each student may submit a sample of no more than five pages of poetry, fiction, or creative non-fiction. Excerpts from longer works are welcome as long as they do not exceed the five-page limit. Neither the student’s name nor any other identifying information should appear on any of the pages of the submission. Winners and finalists for these awards will be selected by the Department of English’s Undergraduate Studies Committee.
Application Form for the Paul Carroll Creative Writing Award
Submit application for the Paul Carroll Creative Writing Award
Robert and Corinne Silver Award: $500
The Robert and Corinne Silver Award is a prize for a continuing undergraduate English major concentrating in the study of literature (Concentrations: British and Anglophone Literature, American Literature or Media, Rhetorical and Cultural Studies.) Preference will be given to applicants who can demonstrate academic ability. Financial need may also play a role in the award decision. To be eligible for this award, students must have a declared concentration in literature and achieved sophomore standing or above. Graduating seniors are not eligible.
Application Form for the Robert and Corinne Silver Award
Submit application for Robert and Corinne Silver Award
Anne Hopewell Selby Undergraduate Research Award: $500
In honor of the late professor Anne Hopewell Selby, the English Department offers this award to an outstanding undergraduate student pursuing scholarly activities outside the classroom. The purpose of this award is to help cover expenses such as trips to conferences or special libraries or the purchase of books not required for classes.
Application Form for Anne Hopewell Selby Undergraduate Research Award
Submit application for Anne Hopewell Selby Undergraduate Research Award
Outstanding Sophomore in English Award: Two winners, each receiving $500
The Outstanding Sophomore in English Award is intended to highlight sophomore students who have demonstrated dedication to their studies in English through the breadth and depth of their coursework and have excelled in their studies within the major. Preference will be given to applicants who can demonstrate academic ability. Financial need may also play a role in the award decision. To be eligible for this award, students must have a declared concentration in the English major and achieved sophomore standing during the semester in which they are applying (e.g. over 30 earned credit hours, but no more than 60 credit hours, including in-progress courses).
Application Form for Outstanding Sophomore in English Award
Submit Application Form for Outstanding Sophomore in English Award
Faculty Nominations (No Application)
Raymond and Wilma Campion Award: $1800
John and Jeanne Newton Scholarship: $1800
The Campion Award and the Newton Scholarship are awarded to outstanding English majors who have graduated from Chicago Public High Schools. Students must have at least 30 but not more than 90 semester hours at the time of application and a minimum GPA of 3.0. The selections will be made based upon faculty recommendations. All eligible applicants will be considered for both the Campion and the Newton Scholarships.
Ernest C. Van Keuren Award: $200
Each year, the faculty chooses one outstanding graduating senior for the Ernest C. Van Keuren award. The winner is chosen by the faculty from among those students who are graduating with highest distinction.
The Mary Parson Donnellon Scholarship: $25,000 (total) (multiple awards made)
Honoring the memory of Mary Parson Donnellon this $25,000 award is split between an English major with a concentration in professional writing and an English major with a concentration in creative writing. The scholarship funds tuition and winners, who must be rising juniors or rising seniors, are chosen by faculty. Emphasis is on both academic distinction and financial need.
Undergraduate Student University Awards
UIC Awards and Scholarships
The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences has many awards and scholarships for which English majors can apply. Click here for LAS Scholarships. Notable writing scholarships include the PNA-Hugh Hill Endowed Scholarship and the Bernard Shaw Prize and Scholarship.
For continuing students, UIC SnAP is an invaluable resource for current scholarships and deadlines. Complete your profile to find scholarship opportunities relevant to you. Don’t forget to use your English major writing skills to apply for essay-based scholarships!
Graduate Student Department Awards
Awards for Travel
The Department offers PhD students travel funding up to $500 in conjunction with LAS. This award is processed by the Department twice a year. You should begin by filling out the intent form no later than the third week of the semester in which you plan to travel. Once notified of approval by the DGS Office, you should then fill out the application form (.docx), get your advisor’s signature, and turn it in to the DGS Office to be signed. The DGS will pass the form on to the department’s business manager, Amy Liu, for processing.
LAS funds will only go to those presenting at a conference; departmental funds may go to those attending conferences and symposia or visiting archives. Half of each year’s funds will be allocated to each period. The hierarchy for deciding how to allocate funds is as follows:
- students presenting at national conferences
- students presenting at regional conferences
- students presenting at local conferences
- students accepted to seminars (such as those at Cornell’s School of Criticism & Theory or Breadloaf)*
- students conducting archival research
To ensure equitable distribution among all grads, students may not receive the LAS PhD Student Travel Award more than two (2) times over the course of their graduate career.
*Travel to seminars and for archival research is not supported by LAS, and such funds will come out of the English coffers. Students may not claim to have received an LAS PhD Student Travel Award on their CV if they are awarded these funds for that purpose.
Awards for Excellence
The Department of English acknowledges graduate students’ excellence in writing and teaching through several different year-end awards.
Anne Hopewell Selby Award
Relatives, colleagues, and other friends of the late Anne Hopewell Selby, Assistant Professor of English at the University of Illinois at Chicago, have established a fund in her memory for awards for distinction in Graduate Studies in English. Annually the department of English designates one graduate student enrolled in the department who has demonstrated outstanding scholarship in English to receive an award, which is paid from the income derived from the memorial fund. The winner is selected by a committee appointed by the Director of Graduate Studies on the basis of a submitted PhD Dissertation chapter. Students in all specializations are eligible for the award, presented at the department’s annual spring celebration. The award includes a cash prize.
Kogan Bonus Award
The Scholarship Association of the University of Illinois at Chicago has established the Kogan Bonus Award for students in English. The award includes a cash prize. The recipient of the Kogan Award is chosen by a committee appointed by the Director of Graduate Studies. The award is designed to enhance a student’s professional development, and selection of the winner is based upon the strength of a student’s work prior to the dissertation, such as an essay written for a course during the academic year, an MA Project, or an approved Dissertation Prospectus.
Department of English Distinguished Teaching Award
This award is presented annually to an advanced doctoral student whose performance as a Teaching Assistant, as judged by department faculty, ranks at the highest level of professional competence. The award includes a cash prize. Students construct a dossier of teaching materials submitted to a committee appointed by the Director of Graduate Studies. The dossier consists of a statement of teaching philosophy (no more than three pages), course syllabi, course evaluations from no more than two classes, and sample student papers from one of the courses.
Gloria Fromm Award:
This award honors the memory of Gloria Fromm, Professor of English and scholar of British modernism. The award is for excellence in work in British studies by a graduate student over the past academic year. Students submit a writing sample of no more than 25 pages of work, including notes, to be considered for the award. The Director of Graduate Studies appoints a committee of three faculty members in British Studies to review the essays/samples and choose a winner. The award includes a cash prize.
Graduate Paul Carroll Award:
This award is for an outstanding advanced PhD student (usually ABD) and considers the totality of scholarship, writing, and service to the program.
Betty Stuart Smith Award
Given annually to recruit an entering PhD graduate student in creative writing, this award acknowledges and encourages significant accomplishment in either poetry or prose. The incoming student is awarded $2,750 a year for two years (a total of $5500); selection is based upon the application for graduate admission, and is made by a committee appointed by the Director of Graduate Studies.
A juried prize for MA and PhD students in the Program for Writers in prose based on a one-time submission in the spring semester.
Michael Anania Prize:
A juried prize for PhD students in the Program for Writers in poetry based on a one-time submission of 3-5 poems in the spring semester.
Past Award Winners
Award 2021 2020 2019 2018 Distinguished Teaching Award Ann-Marie McManaman Cecilia Villarruel Mark Schoenknecht Russell Mayo Gloria Fromm Award Katherine Brandt Corbin Hiday Hanna Khan Ann-Marie McManaman Selby Award Corbin Hiday, Sarah Buchmeier & Melissa Macero Sarah Buchmeier Kathleen Blackburn Kogan Award Tierney Powell, Angelica Davila, & Jared O'Connor Laura Jok Jenna Hart & Thomas Moore Corbin Hiday Goodnow Award Joseph Meads & Michael Williamson Dan Magers & Jay Yencich Alex Luft & Adam Edelman Patrick Reichard & Carrie McGath Paul Carroll Award Laura Jok Adam Edelman Dan Magers Jay Yencich Betty Stuart Smith Award Alexandrine Ogundimu Mary Kate Coleman (Varnau) Nestor Gomez Dez Brown Reynolds Dissertation Fellowship Justin Raden
University Awards for Graduate Students
Continuing students wishing to compete for annual fellowships and awards may obtain the necessary forms on the Graduate College’s website.
NOTE: All accepted incoming students are automatically considered for any relevant recruitment fellowships and awards and are nominated at the discretion of the admissions review committee.
University Fellowships seek to recruit outstanding students newly admitted to terminal master’s (see list below) and PhD programs under the auspices of the Graduate College at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Students who have previously been admitted to a graduate program at UIC may be eligible if it can be demonstrated that this award would be part of a genuinely new recruitment effort (transitioning from a MS to a PhD program in the same department does not meet this criterion). Students should direct questions about eligibility to their Director of Graduate Studies. Applicants will be reviewed by the Graduate Awards Committee and evaluated for academic excellence on the basis of post-secondary record, letters of recommendation, personal statement, and other criteria as deemed appropriate by the committee, including the recommendation from the nominating program/department.
All applicants must be nominated by their departments, which collect and submit each nomination as a PDF to Box.
The goal of the Access to Excellence Fellowship at the University of Illinois at Chicago is to increase the number of students from historically underrepresented groups in graduate education who enter careers as researchers and college faculty. Historically underrepresented groups include: Black, Latinx, American Indian, Alaska Native, Native Hawaiian, and other Pacific Islanders.
The DFI Fellowship Program’s goal is to increase the number of minority full-time tenure track faculty and staff at colleges and universities in Illinois.
Acknowledging the lack of diversity in faculty around the country, we wanted to build a program at UIC to recruit and support outstanding historically underrepresented PhD students, who are interested in pursuing careers as faculty members. Our intent is to support these students with competitive funding packages, skills and professional development opportunities, and mentoring in order to ensure success in graduate school and in their future careers. ONE nomination per doctoral program.
Awards for Current Students
The Dean’s Scholar Award is a one-year, non-renewable award presented by the Dean of the Graduate College in recognition of a student’s scholarly achievement. It is intended to provide the most distinguished, advanced-level graduate students with a period of time dedicated solely to the completion of their programs. The Dean’s Scholar competition is open to doctoral students who have passed the Graduate-College-required Preliminary Examination at the University of Illinois at Chicago and are well into their dissertation work. Applications are ordinarily due by the second week in March.
Formerly the Abraham Lincoln Fellowship, the Access to Excellence Fellowship (AF) has a streamlined application and retains the two rounds of applications: recruitment and retention.
The Provost’s Graduate Research Award seeks to maximize our impact. We envision that the PGRA will be a steppingstone to larger external funding awards.
Since its inception in 2009, this graduate research award has supported multidisciplinary scholarship to expose students to varied research and creative fields. The award mechanism has naturally evolved into a way for students early in their studies to develop new research directions for their PhD dissertations or terminal degree thesis/capstone project and has been used by graduate programs as a way for students to practice writing research proposals. Starting with the Fall 2016 competition, funding in the sum of $5,000 is available for pilot grants (or preliminary research) so that students can then have stronger applications for funding from external sources. We anticipate funding 15-20 projects. Awards will be $5,000 paid out over five months: February 16-June 16, 2022.
(NB: They are processed as awards to the student, not grants; no tuition waiver is attached.)
The Graduate College’s longest-running support for research by graduate students at UIC is the Award for Graduate Research (AGR). Formerly named the Provost’s Award for Graduate Research and the W.C. and May Preble Deiss Fund for Biomedical Research Award, or collectively the Provost/Deiss Award, the name was shortened to avoid confusion with other funding mechanisms. It is one application; however, the Deiss Fund underwrites research in clinical or basic medical sciences.
Students may apply on a competitive basis for awards of approximately $1000 to $3000 to support their research. Awards will be made in two competitions annually, once in Spring semester and once in Fall semester. Please note: The awards committee reserves the right to award less in support than the student applicant requests, and frequently does so.
These awards are designed to allow students to take advantage of unique opportunities to further their research, and to aid progress toward their degrees. Effective Fall 2018, the Graduate College is delineating three spending categories–research travel, summer research stipend, and materials/supplies–if not covered by other sources, such as the grant of a major advisor.
The Graduate College’s annual Outstanding Thesis and Dissertation Award is given to the most outstanding master’s thesis and doctoral dissertation in each of the four Graduate Program divisions, as determined by the Graduate College Awards Committee. Each of the eight awards includes a monetary award. NOTE: This award is issued annually in the FALL SEMESTER, therefore has a later deadline than other year-end awards (usually the first week of October).
Increasingly, graduate students are seeking positions outside the traditional tenure-track professoriate. To this end, the Graduate College has greatly enhanced its career and professional development offerings to help graduate students consider new career options and to build translatable skills. The Provost’s Graduate Internship Award (PGIA) is part of this effort. The springtime competition incentivizes graduate students to independently identify one short (3-month) internship opportunity that might lead to employment following graduation. This internship program is limited to full-time students, in good academic standing, who are in a PhD or terminal master’s program.
On the importance of internships for doctoral students, see Leonard Cassuto, “Doctoral Training Should Include an Internship,” Chronicle of Higher Education (August 28, 2020).
Formerly called the Outstanding Undergraduate Mentoring Award, the Graduate Student Excellence in Teaching & Mentoring Award (GSETMA) celebrates the excellence of our graduate students in their teaching and mentoring of undergraduates. The award adheres to the guidelines of regional and national competitions in the same realm.
The Graduate College offers funds to deserving students to defray expenses associated with travel to present original research or scholarly work. Qualifying presentations must be at a meeting or conference of a nationally or internationally recognized scientific or scholarly society. Awards may be used for transportation, hotel, meals, and/or registration expenses. A graduate student is defined as a degree-seeking student currently enrolled in a Graduate College program. (Students enrolled in professional and non-Graduate College programs, e.g., MSW, MBA, DrPH, MPH, MENG, DMD, JD, LLM, PharmD, and MD are NOT eligible for the,se awards.) For a full list of programs in the Graduate College, please see the Graduate College Web site. Awards are contingent upon the availability of funds. Students are only eligible to receive funding once per fiscal year. This award is handled by the HR/business manager.
To apply, print out the application form below and fill it out in full. Print directly from the online application page; do not copy/paste or otherwise alter or manipulate the text. INCOMPLETE, ALTERED, and/or UNSIGNED APPLICATIONS WILL NOT BE CONSIDERED.
If you are not applying for optional matching funds (see bottom of this page), do not complete that section of the form (the last section, on matching funds).
Applications must be submitted before the closest deadline following the completion of your trip. Applications submitted prior to the proposed trip will be held until after the travel is concluded. When a deadline date falls during a weekend, the deadline will be the following Monday. The MONTHLY deadline is the LAST DAY of the month.
The Image of Research is an annual interdisciplinary exhibit competition organized by the Graduate College and University Library to showcase the breadth and diversity of research at UIC. Each year, students enrolled in a graduate or professional degree program at UIC are invited to submit an image they created along with a brief précis of how the image relates to the student’s overall research.
The winning entries are chosen by a multi-disciplinary jury and exhibited at the Daley Library and in the Library of Health Sciences, and are featured on light pole banners around campus.
The Department of English receives a very limited number of tuition-and-fee waivers from the Graduate College each semester, known as the Board of Trustees (or BOT) waivers. The waivers are issued on a semester-by-semester basis. BOT waivers are effective for only one semester, and recipients must reapply each term. There is no guarantee that a BOT will be renewed; renewal depends on a number of factors including performance and the availability of the award in the coming years.
Students should notify their primary advisor that they intend to apply for a BOT waiver.
Eligibility: Preference will be given to eligible students experiencing certain extenuating circumstances (for example: those in the English Education program who are student teaching full-time and therefore ineligible for working/lectureship at UIC, or PhD students in their final year who need to complete credits to submit their thesis and graduate.) Eligible students:
- are doctoral candidates living locally who have not yet accumulated the required 32 hours of dissertation research OR outstanding MA students;
- do not already carry an assistantship or any other type of funding; and
- will enroll in a a minimum of 12 semester hours in the fall and spring semesters/6 credit hours in summer session for full-time waivers OR a between 8 and 11 credit hours in fall and spring semesters or 3-5 hours in summer for a part-time waiver.
Full-time employees, including lecturers, are not eligible for this waiver.
Process to request a waiver: Students should contact the Graduate Studies Program Coordinator as soon as possible if they intend to request a BOT. Afterwards, they will need to fill out the request form, which asks for the following basic information:
- Term/Year requesting a BOT waiver
- Program (English studies, Creative Writing, English Education)
- Status (PhD or MA, full time or part time)
- Primary faculty advisor
- Courses you intend to take during the BOT waiver semester (with credit hours)
- Circumstances that necessitate a BOT waiver
Deadline: After speaking with the Graduate Studies Program Coordinator, you must submit the request form by noon (12 pm) on the Friday before the last day of instruction in the term preceding the one for which you are applying, e.g.:
- Spring 2019: November 30 deadline
- Summer 2019: April 26 deadline
- Fall 2019: August 2 deadline
Covered fees & charges: BOT waivers cover the following charges:
- full tuition, including differential, if any
- service fee
- health service fee
- Academic Facilities Maintenance Fund Assessment (AFMFA)
- Library and Information Technology Assessment (LITA)
BOT waivers do not cover the following charges: general fee; CTA transportation fee; student-to-student fee; or the cost of CampusCare health insurance.
Questions? Direct questions about the BOT waiver to the Director of Graduate Studies or the Graduate Studies Program Coordinator.