Kolbe Research Fellows


The Kolbe Research Fellowship supports mentored undergraduate research at Gettysburg College. The 8-week summer program allows students to advance their scholarly or creative interests through a research project in close collaboration with a faculty mentor during the summer before a student’s sophomore, junior, or senior year.

The fellowship may take one of two forms:

  1. Independent Student Research with a Faculty Mentor
    • Students may propose an independent project that advances their scholarly or creative interests. Students will recruit a faculty mentor to advise on their work.
  2. Faculty-Coordinated Research with Student Collaborators
    • Students may propose a research project that supports a faculty mentor's current or ongoing research. The student contribution should be designed in consultation with the faculty member. Students should communicate with faculty about potential collaborations.

Kolbe Research Fellows receive a $4,000 stipend and free on-campus housing, plus $500 in supplemental funds to be reimbursed for research expenses.

Applications for summer 2024 are due on March 3, 2024, at 11:59 pm.

Required Qualifications and Skills

  • Ability to create a research topic or question and apply research skills towards answering it
  • Strong communication, interpersonal, time management, and organizational skills
  • Ability to work effectively as an independent researcher with some guidance from a faculty mentor

Expectations, Duties, and Responsibilities

  • The research project should be connected to a student’s on-going program of study. Students can complete a research project begun in an earlier course, the beginning of a senior capstone project, or research related to a personal interest provided that the topic be grounded in the liberal arts.
  • The project must take place during the summer before a student’s sophomore, junior, or senior year.
  • Students must identify a faculty mentor who agrees to meet regularly with them (in person or virtually) during the 8-week summer program.
  • Project mentorship by visiting faculty may require approval of the department chair or the Associate Provost of Academic Affairs.
  • Students are expected to attend and participate in two required lunch meetings scheduled during the program, unless project-related activities require the student to be elsewhere.
  • Students must provide a progress report to other Kolbe Research Fellows and their faculty mentors during the last week of the summer program. A final public presentation on the research project to a public audience is required during the following fall semester.
  • The research project must be complete, in a form approved by the faculty mentor, by the start of fall semester.
  • All supported projects must comply with the College’s Institutional Review Board (IRB) or Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) policies if applicable. Required documentation must be submitted well in advance of the fellowship's start date.

To Apply

Before submitting an application, students must discuss their research proposal with a faculty member who agrees to serve as a mentor during the Kolbe Research Fellowship.

Students must submit their application online by March 3, 2024, at 11:59 pm. Faculty mentors must submit their letters of support by the same date. Questions? Email kolbe@gettysburg.edu.

Application Materials

  1. Resume
  2. Research proposal. A three-page proposal (11 pt. font, double spaced) outlining the nature of the project. The proposal should include:
    1. a clear research question and research design/method
    2. a plan for how to investigate the research question accompanied by a weekly timetable
    3. what the applicant has done to prepare themselves to undertake the project (study of a language, related coursework, internship experience, etc.)
    4. how this project will contribute to the applicant’s scholarly or creative interests
    5. a budget stating how the $500 in any additional research-related expenses for the applicant will be spent (if applicable)
  3. A one to two-page annotated bibliography so the committee can see what sources each applicant has read/consulted in developing their proposal. A minimum of 5 sources is expected.
  4. Unofficial transcript. This allows the committee to better understand how each applicant's coursework has prepared them to undertake this independent research. (Access via Campus Experience on the Current Students webpage.)

Letter of Support from Faculty Mentor

Applicants must request a letter of support from their faculty mentor. Faculty should submit the letter directly to kolbe@gettysburg.edu by the application deadline. More details for faculty mentors are below.

Student Eligibility

  • To be considered for a Kolbe Research Fellowship, applicants must have earned at least a 3.0 GPA at the time of application.
  • The applicant must be able to conduct the majority of the activities associated with the project during the program period.
  • The intent of the Kolbe Research Fellowship is for Fellows to participate in a community of summer scholars at Gettysburg, so Fellows need to be present on campus to both contribute and benefit to the community, as well as to attend the lunch meetings. Exceptions may apply in cases where the applicant’s discipline is such that fieldwork is an integral component or if the applicant’s proposal describes how they will complete their work and maintain regular contact with their faculty mentor without being on campus.

Selection Criteria

Applications will be evaluated on:

  • The clarity and strength of the research question and research design/method
  • The feasibility of the project given the project scope and weekly timetable
  • The likelihood of success based on the applicant’s academic preparation
  • How the project contributes to the applicant’s academic or artistic field
  • The faculty mentor’s endorsement of the project, the appropriateness of their background/expertise for supervision of the project, and the extent to which the project provides an opportunity for regular interaction between faculty mentor and the student

Selection Timeline

Selection for the Kolbe Research Fellowship is made by a committee of faculty members and librarians.

Selected fellows will be notified by early April. Notification will be by email, copying the faculty mentor. A follow-up meeting with the summer students and mentors will be scheduled in late April/early May.


Fellowship Start and End Dates

The fellowship will begin on June 3, 2024, and end on July 26, 2024.

Fellowship Stipend and Expenses

  • A summer stipend of $4,000 will be paid in four bi-weekly installments during the course of the 8-week program. Regarding taxation of the stipend, please refer to the Scholarships and Fellowships Taxation Guide.
  • In addition to the stipend, up to $500 will be available to reimburse students for eligible expenses connected to the project (if applicable).
  • On-campus housing is provided at no cost to Fellows. Housing will include kitchen facilities; no other meal plan is provided.
  • Please note: if the project includes overseas air travel, the Fellow must have enough personal funds or a personal credit card when making flight reservations to reserve the ticket. The College cannot arrange for travel advances for students, not even against the stipend.

Information for Faculty Mentors

  • Letters of support for student proposals should address:
    • how the faculty member's academic background or expertise is appropriate for mentoring the student's work
    • the strength and feasibility of the proposed project
      • For faculty-coordinated research, the letter must address the student's contribution to the research project. Students should be collaborators, the project should be mutually beneficial, and the fellowship must end with a substantial, final product (i.e., students should make a meaningful intellectual contribution that goes beyond clerical our routine tasks).
    • the student’s preparedness to undertake the project
    • the agreed upon strategy for regularly scheduled meetings
    • the agreed upon final product
  • Letters are due on the same date as the student proposals; letters should be emailed to kolbe@gettysburg.edu
  • Faculty mentors receive a stipend of $1,000 per mentee (maximum of three mentees). Please note the maximum number of mentor stipends is limited to three across all funded summer fellowships (Kolbe, X-SIG, etc.).
  • Faculty are expected to meet regularly with their Fellow throughout the summer, either in person or via Zoom, etc.
  • Faculty mentors are expected to attend and participate in two lunch meetings during the 8-week summer program.
  • Project mentorship by visiting faculty may require approval of the department chair or the Associate Provost of Academic Affairs.


If you have questions about this program, please email kolbe@gettysburg.edu

The program is funded through the Eric E. Kolbe ‘65 Student-Faculty Research Fund, established in memory of Johanna and Erich Kolbe and in honor of Robert Kolbe.