Student Summer Independent Research (SSIR)

The SSIR grants support rising seniors in the pursuit of their own research or creative interest, with the mentorship of a faculty member. Depending on the duration of the summer research, an SSIR may be eligible for elective credit and may also be eligible for experiential (EXP) credit. Please consult with your faculty adviser. Look for SSIR course options in the summer registration period.

A student must propose a topic for the Thesis and describe what work would be accomplished with the assistance of the summer funding. That work should not be performed on campus; the student should plan to use the grant to travel to the appropriate places(s) to do first-hand research, or consult libraries or archives. The student should approach a faculty member for advice on the project and ask if he or she would serve as the mentor for the summer months of the project. Typically, that faculty member will serve as the student's primary thesis advisor during the senior year.

The SSIR grant will provide a stipend for a minimum of four, up to a maximum of ten weeks of summer work. If there are no extraordinary expenses, the stipend is $385 a week. However, students with higher expenses may submit a budget for fewer than ten weeks of work plus expenses-for example, a student doing research abroad might submit a budget for 4 weeks of work $1,540 ($385x4) plus $2,310 for airfare and higher lodging/food expenses. The maximum grant amount that will be awarded is $3,850.

An application should be no more than a two-page description of the project and the work to be accomplished during the weeks of the grant, and must include a budget plan, along with a supporting statement by the faculty mentor which also certifies the student's eligibility for the honors thesis. During the summer, the student and mentor are expected to stay in regular contact, at least by email, sharing ideas and work-in-progress, and the product of the summer work will be submitted to the mentor for review at the end of the grant period. Students will submit a brief report of the summer's accomplishments to the Dean of the College and Dean of the Williams School by Fall Reading Days.

Please indicate if you are applying for a Summer Research Scholarship, a Johnson Opportunity grant or another W&L funded summer experience.

The College and Williams School will fund up to four SSIR grants on a competitive basis.