Research Funding

The Department of History administers several funds to finance students doing major research projects.

Department Funds

The History Department Undergraduate Research Fund awards grants to students who require funds to travel to archives or for research materials for extensive projects, usually as part of a history seminar, or as a continuation of work begun there. All students are encouraged to apply. The Department also has additional funds to support undergraduate research for students in the Honors program. All students who need money to travel to archives or for research materials for extensive projects should submit an application as explained below.

The application process is overseen by the Undergraduate Chair. The size of the award will depend upon research needs, distance of travel, and the quality of the proposal, to a maximum of $1000. Grants may be used to fund, for example: transportation to a library or archive, reasonable lodging expenses associated with such travel; user fees if required; microfilming, or photocopying costs associated with doing research; costs of scanning archival or otherwise unavailable material and purchasing database subscriptions due to COVID19 restrictions

Application Instructions--please read carefully

2023 APPLICATION INSTRUCTIONS: The main deadline for summer grants is May 1; students may apply for remaining funds on a rolling basis anytime throughout the year.  All applications may be e-mailed directly to Dr. Fabella at  Faculty members overseeing students' research should e-mail Dr. Fabella with a message indicating their support of the application. 

Applications should not exceed 5 double-spaced pages (excluding the cover sheet) and should include all of the following 3 parts:

1. A cover page indicating all of the following:

  • student name
  • Penn ID number
  • e-mail address
  • phone number,
  • title of project
  • name of faculty sponsor
  • the course for which research is being conducted
  • date of submission

2. A clear description of your proposed project and its significance, and a brief summary of any completed preliminary work. If your application involves travel, identify the archive or library at which you plan to work, explain why this travel is essential to your project, and present a schedule that explains how much time you need at the site.

3. A specific budget that explains each part of your request.


Examples of successful past applications can be found here and here.

    Special Funding for Projects in US History: The Marvin and Sybil Weiner Travel Award

    The Marvin and Sybil Weiner Travel Award is for an outstanding History major engaged in a significant research project in U.S. history from 1750 to 1865. The Award is intended to support and enrich the research experience of undergraduates, especially those interested in the history of American democracy, citizenship, rights, and values, broadly construed. The amount of the award will be no more than $1,500, to be used for travel and research expenses. Any History major, whether working on honors theses, seminar papers, or guided independent research, are welcome to submit applications.

    Applications should include: a brief statement about your project, including a description of the topic, plans for research, and names of archives and/or libraries you will visit; a budget with major expenses listed (e.g. transportation, lodging, food, photocopying).  

    Please send the necessary materials by email to the History Undergraduate Advisor by May 1, 2023.

    University Funding

    The Center for Undergraduate Research and Fellowships (CURF) offers a number of research opportunities, including funding, internships, scholarships, and fellowships.

    Rodin College House also maintains a fellowships and grants database.