Kluge Fellows Summer Research Program

Each year, Kluge Fellows Summer Research Grants are awarded to allow eligible students the opportunity to collaborate with a member of the faculty on a research project during the summer. The project provides each student with the opportunity to engage in advanced scholarly work, while developing a collegial relationship with a member of the faculty. By encouraging the exploration of academic questions and social issues through a well-defined and formally-presented research project, the Kluge Fellows Program fosters intellectual curiosity, the clarification of ideas and beliefs, an enhanced sense of participation in the academic community, and the opportunity to contribute to the community at large. Past project have taken Kluge Fellows across the country and around the globe.

All eligible sophomores and juniors will receive an emailed announcement in the fall semester discussing the Kluge Fellows Program and outlining the dates of the "Writing a Research Proposal" Seminars. These mandatory seminar series begin in the fall and give applicants the chance to explore their interests and develop a feasible research question, plan, and literature review. Applicants submit their materials - including a research proposal and letter of recommendation from a potential faculty sponsor - after returning from winter break. Where applicable, applicants will submit their proposal to the Institutional Review Board (IRB) for approval.  Interviews are conducted with faculty members and the Kluge Fellows are selected in the early spring. This is a competitive fellowship, and the committee seeks applicants with intelligent, thorough, and feasible research plans.

Applicants are prepared for the Kluge Fellows Summer Research Program through three formal seminars.  These three seminars (“Ideas and Methodology,” “Research Tools,” and  “The Personal Statement and Research Proposal”), are designed to help students define and discuss the appropriate methodology and research methods required to successfully accomplish their work.  All students conducting research involving human subjects must attend an additional online IRB workshop as well.  A designated Graduate Student Mentor (GSM) attends all sessions and meets with students individually, in between sessions helping to focus student research and guide their ideas into a coherent graduate-level research paper.

Working intensively with their faculty sponsor, Kluge Fellows complete their papers and submit them to the CUSP Office in early September. Fellows are expected to budget their time appropriately, and are encouraged to seek out the designated GSM and other CUSP administrators for additional help with revisions. There is no set length to the Kluge Fellows papers; most are between twenty and thirty pages.

The Kluge Research Symposium marks the end of the fellowship process and allows Fellows the opportunity to formally present their projects before an audience of peers, faculty, staff, and administrators. Students are prepared for these conference-like presentations by the CUSP Administration  through a mock presentation workshop and individual meetings with the designated GSM. The GSM provides the students with guidelines on giving an academic presentation, including tips on public speaking, topic organization, timing, and the use of visual aids. The Fellows in the past have each given ten minute PowerPoint presentation followed by five minutes of questions and answers. The Annual Kluge Fellows Symposium Proceedings are bound and distributed to Fellows, Faculty Sponsors, and members of the Columbia administration.

Columbia Undergraduate Scholars Program


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