Applying for Student-initiated Summer Fellowships

Students interested in conducting academic research or creative projects on a self-selected topic may qualify for funding from the university.

Student-Faculty Collaboration

Enrique "Kiko" Galvez, Charles A. Dana Professor of Physics and Astronomy works with students in the laser lab in the Ho Science Center.

Student-initiated fellowships envision research or creative projects supervised by faculty members, but proposed by students.

A student wishing to pursue a self-inspired project should identify and consult with a Colgate faculty member to receive guidance and a commitment from the faculty member to serve as a formal adviser throughout the project. The project does not need to be related to the faculty member's own research or specific area of scholarly or artistic interest.

The student and faculty member will then collaborate on an application for funding, found below.

Important Deadlines: 

Stage Deadline
Student submits proposal online. Support letter from faculty mentor is submitted directly to the division director March 5, 2024
Awards to students are announced March 26, 2024
Students accept position April 2, 2024
Hard copy of final arrangements mailed to students Early April 2024
Summer housing TBD


Students who receive funding will be compensated at $565 per week.


  • Graduating seniors are not eligible for student-initiated fellowships.
  • At the project's conclusion, students must submit an abstract highlighting the project's accomplishments, written for a non-specialist, to the Center for Learning, Teaching, and Research. This abstract will be included in the Summer Undergraduate Research Directory.
  • Research projects that will be using human or animal subjects are subject to review, rules, and guidelines from Colgate's Institutional Review Board (human participants), and the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (animal participants).


This type of funding envisions projects supervised by faculty mentors but proposed by students. Projects do not need to be related to the faculty member’s research or specific area of scholarly or artistic interest, but the faculty mentor must agree to supervise the student for the duration of the project. Students apply for funding in consultation with faculty mentors.

Please consult with your faculty mentor when preparing your proposal. The narrative must follow these guidelines and be written for a single project and include the title for that project:

  1. Written for a non-specialist. 
  2. Clearly identify the question to be addressed by the research project, and its significance. 
  3. Specifically and concretely describe the sources, experimental plan, approaches, or methodology that will be used, and how they will address the research question. 
  4. Describe any alternative approaches or experimental plans, if applicable. 
  5. Where applicable, appropriate references must be included. 
  6. Include a timeline of anticipated tasks.

Additionally, your faculty mentor must submit a letter of support. The letter should address the following points:

  • The significance of the proposed work
  • The quality of work that may be expected from the student
  • The plan for consultation and supervision, given the student's needs and ability to work independently

This statement must be submitted directly to the faculty mentor's division director by the listed deadline.

Faculty may access student transcripts through Degree Works as part of the evaluation process.

The timeline for this type of funding is listed in the table above. Division directors will collate proposals and circulate them to all chairs, allowing them at least a week to review proposals under consideration.

Apply Now

Contact Information

Questions about specific summer fellowship opportunities should be directed to the advising faculty member.

Questions regarding the summer fellowship application process and funding opportunities may be directed to:

Co-Director Center for Learning, Teaching, and Research