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KSB Application for AU Summer Scholars & Artists Program


Advanced undergraduates are invited to apply to be an American University Summer Scholars & Artist for 2020. Undergraduate Scholars will receive a payment of $4,000 to support their research-related expenses, which may include living expenses, travel, equipment, supplies, etc. Scholars will work closely with faculty mentors in ways that enhance faculty scholarship or creativity.

Faculty mentors will receive a $1,000 stipend to guide students through their apprenticeship. The faculty member must actively mentor the Scholar throughout the application process, scholarly endeavor, and final presentation. They will aid students in all phases of development, design, implementation, analysis/interpretation and presentation of the scholarly or creative work.

During the summer, they will remain in frequent contact with students and provide timely feedback. Finally, faculty will help students find appropriate venues for sharing the results of their project.

Projects may be conducted jointly with professors or with other students, but the project must show evidence of significant original work by the Scholar. For example, if the Scholar or Artist is directly involved in a faculty research project, they must have their own area of intellectual inquiry to investigate and participate in all phases of design, development, execution, analysis, and conclusions. In essence, the relationship would be one of apprenticeship rather than research assistance.

Guidelines for the project are that the scholars will be working on their research full time for a period of eight (8) weeks in the summer. The $4,000 payment is not a payment for work but rather, expected to offset the Scholar’s living expenses during this time. Scholars and Artists are encouraged to participate in workshops on scholarship sponsored by the University Honors program, CTRL, the Academic Support Center, or the University Library— and may be asked to attend information sessions or workshops.


Applicants must have a minimum 3.3 GPA in their major and a minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA. In addition, applicants must have earned at least 60 credits and registered for classes in the subsequent fall semester. Their Fall 2020 classes can be at AU or at AU Abroad. At the end of the registration period in April, the Office for Undergraduate Education will check to ensure that Scholars are indeed registered for fall 2020 classes. All applications must include:

  • The proposal for scholarly activity. The proposal is limited to 1500 words, not including references. It should include:
    - a description of the project, including proposed research methodology;
    - an explanation of the project’s significance;
    - a brief description of academic preparation (coursework, etc.) that will enable the applicant to undertake this proposed activity; and
    - a proposed timeline for the 8-week period of proposed research
  • A current transcript (unofficial is fine).
  • A letter of reference from the intended faculty mentor. The letter should speak to the quality of the proposed research, to the Scholar’s preparedness for conducting a methodologically sound research project, and to the preparations made for maintaining a close mentor-mentee relationship over the course of the proposed research. (The letter should be sent separately by the faculty member to protect confidentiality.)
  • Applications should be submitted to the Associate Dean for Undergraduate Programs and Student Services at by Monday, March 2nd , 2020. The subject line should read “Summer Scholars Program.”
  • The faculty mentor should send the letter of support to separately.
  • Recipients will be announced in late March


Scholars must be degree-seeking undergraduate students pursuing a major in Kogod. Scholars must also be registered for Fall 2020 classes, which may be at AU or abroad through AU Abroad. Scholars and their mentors should be aware that their payments are taxable. All Scholars will be expected to present research at an event in Fall 2020. Scholars are also strongly encouraged to present their work at additional conferences on or off campus. Scholars will be required to provide a summary of their project to the Dean of Kogod and to the Dean of Undergraduate Education by no later than the last day of classes for Fall 2020.

This 1500-word summary should include the following:

  • Summary of the research conducted under the auspices of the program
  • Statement of proposed next steps in the research project (including plans for future coursework, independent research, presentations, or publication)
  • Should any events prevent Scholars or mentors from starting or completing the project, both the Scholar and the faculty mentor must return the funds to the Kogod School of Business. In cases in which payment is not prompt, the University will place a stop on the student’s account.


The intention of this program is to give talented students an opportunity to explore an intellectual interest in depth and at length. The eight weeks of the program are understood to be the beginning of a process that might take six months or a year from conception to final product. As the student’s thinking matures, his/her project might find its final form in an independent study the following year. The selection committee will keep such issues in mind as a decision is made regarding which project to fund.

The committee will be composed of the Senior Associate Dean, faculty from each Kogod department, and one staff member from the Kogod Center for Business Communications. The representatives will be appointed by the departments. The committee will choose one recipient. The payment will be based on the quality of the proposal and answers to questions posed by the committee.


All funds need to be disbursed to the recipient by April 30th, 2020.


Summer Scholars, Artists and their mentors will be acknowledged in the spring at a university event. The American University Office for Undergraduate Education will notify various university and other publications about the winners, both in the spring after the payment and in the fall after the symposium.