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University Dissertation Fellowship

Doctoral programs are invited to submit names and dossiers of University Dissertation Fellowship nominees to the Graduate College. Students may NOT self-nominate. These awards were established to support PhD students in their final year of completing a dissertation. Dissertation Fellowship awards are competitive and are selected by a faculty review committee based on academic achievement and progress in training since being admitted to a doctoral program, as well as evidence of professional commitment and potential impact of the dissertation on the student’s field of study.

All doctoral programs may nominate up to two students and must rank their nominations. Larger programs, as indicated below, will be allowed to submit more nominations:

Total Full-time Doctoral Enrollment Maximum Nominations
1-75 2
76-150 3
151+ 4

Nominees must have advanced to candidacy before the award can begin and awards are granted for one year. Students receiving this fellowship will be expected to present their research at the Spring 2022 Graduate Research Forum.



Fellowship begins on June 1, 2021 and ends May 31, 2022

Recipients will be announced no later than February 15, 2021


Nomination Instructions

Submit the materials described below through the nomination portal.

Submit the following for the program:

Program cover form indicating contact information for the person submitting the program’s nomination(s). The cover form will also have the program submit a program-level mentoring plan*, as appropriate.

Submit the following for each nominee, in ranked order of preference:

  1. Nominee’s name and either UD e-mail address or UD ID number.
  2. A letter of nomination for the nominee from either director of the graduate program, department chair, or college dean that describes the accomplishments and suitability of the nominee for this award to indicate why the program selected this student for nomination.
  3. A letter of support by the student’s dissertation adviser that addresses the nominee’s:
    • Academic performance and progress in degree and training
    • Potential professional contributions in the field of study, including research, teaching, and service activities, as well as contributions to-date
    • Funding support history
    • Work plan and advisor mentoring plan* to maximize the likelihood of the candidate completing the dissertation no later than the end of the summer 2022 term
  4. The nominee’s CV that includes a listing of publications authored/co-authored, conference presentations, artistic exhibitions or performances, and other professional accomplishments and activities, including teaching and professional service.
  5. A two-page essay by the nominee that describes their plans for completing the dissertation no later than the end of summer 2022, the potential impact on their field of study, and their career plans.

* A faculty/student-level advisor mentoring plan goes beyond general statements of intentions to meet with your student(s) with whatever frequency, and should include desired outcomes and steps expected of the mentor and mentee to meet them.  Program-level mentoring plans may include things like course, publication, presentation, and grant-writing expectations for all students, as well as resources the program provides to support its students in achieving these expectations.  For examples on mentoring plans/compacts and resources to develop them, visit The Science of Effective Mentorship in STEMM website developed by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, & Medicine (2019).

Complete a Dissertation Fellowship Nomination



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