Kolbe Research Fellows


The Kolbe Summer Fellows program supports mentored undergraduate research at Gettysburg College. The 10-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.

Kolbe Summer Fellows receive a $4,500 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 the Fellow (in person or virtually) during the 10-week summer program.
  • 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 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 program'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 summer fellowship program.

Applications will open in January. Students should submit application materials via Handshake 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 academic or artistic field
    5. a budget stating how the $500 in any additional research-related expenses 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 your coursework has prepared you 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 Summer 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 program is to create a community of summer scholars at Gettysburg, so Kolbe 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 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 ends on August 9, 2024.

Fellowship Stipend and Expenses

  • A summer stipend of $4,500 will be paid in five bi-weekly installments during the course of the 10-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 eligible expenses connected to the project (if applicable).
  • On-campus housing is provided at no cost to Kolbe 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
    • the strength and feasibility of the proposed project
    • 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.
  • Faculty are expected to meet regularly with their Kolbe 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 10-week summer program.


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.