Gwen Frostic Doctoral Fellowships

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Western Michigan University Gwen Frostic Doctoral Fellowships

Gwen Frostic Doctoral Fellowships are funded from an endowment by the late poet, artist, and naturalist, Gwen Frostic, a Western Michigan University alumna, class of 1929. Awards assist recipients in all disciplines with doctoral dissertation completion. Applicants should be within one year of dissertation completion.

These highly competitive fellowships are awarded annually to doctoral students engaged in dissertation research in any field. The fellowships, in an amount to be determined by the Graduate College, will defray educational expenses, including tuition and fees, materials, and travel related directly to the completion of the dissertation. Purchase of computers is not permitted. Funds must be spent in the year (365 days) following the award. The award terminates when the doctoral degree has been conferred.

The DCF, the Frostic Fellowship and the Thompson Fellowship are exclusive of each other. While you are encouraged to apply for more than one fellowship in any award cycle, you cannot hold concurrently. Do note, applications for each fellowship should be adapted given the award amount varies and therefore the scope of the project may need to be modified.

Application deadline: March 12, 2025

The application will open in the spring semester.

Guidelines and Eligibility Criteria:

Nominees must have confirmation of candidacy. The designation of “candidacy” means that students have an approved dissertation committee; approved dissertation proposal; completed all courses and program requirements, with the exception of the dissertation; completed all research tools; completed all qualifying or comprehensive examinations. Nominees must (a) be in good academic standing; (b) be an enrolled student; (c) be enrolled full time in two consecutive semesters in an academic year; enrollment in both summer sessions is equivalent to one semester; and (d) demonstrate progress toward degree completion

Award amount:

Up to $4,000

Letter of Nomination

Important: A Letter of Nomination must be uploaded to InfoReady by the student's dissertation advisor or the department/graduate program advisor or the department chair, on university letterhead. (Instructions will be emailed to the individual you identify in your InfoReady application.) The letter should also include the name of ONE additional faculty member who may be contacted during the application process. 

The Letter of Nomination must clearly address the following elements:

  1. The student's name and the name of the fellowship
  2. Please ensure the student is currently enrolled and has candidacy status/approved dissertation project
  3. Indicate the likelihood that the student will complete the dissertation within or by the following time period: Fall 2024 - Summer II 2025
  4. Significance of the dissertation research as it is situated in the respective discipline
  5. The student’s academic/scholarly accomplishments
  6. The scholarly scientific promise of the student
  7. Any other elements that will distinguish the student’s nomination


If you have questions about the application process for this award, please contact Diana Berkshire-Hearit


Page updated April 2024