Saint Louis University

Mellon Faculty Development Awards



Full-time, ranked faculty members with primary or secondary appointments in the Departments of American Studies, English, Fine and Performing Arts, History, Languages, Literatures & Cultures, Philosophy, Theological Studies, and the Center for Digital Humanities may apply for Mellon Faculty Development Awards for types of humanities projects listed in the three categories below. Proposals that are humanistic in nature submitted by full-time, ranked faculty members with primary or secondary appointments in the Departments of Communication, Political Science, Psychology, and Sociology and Anthropology are also eligible for consideration.

Junior faculty are particularly encouraged to apply.

Applicants who have received awards three years in a row totaling $7,500 are ordinarily ineligible to receive funding until one year has elapsed since the last award.

Requests for an increase in the approved amount of a Mellon award normally will not be authorized.


Available funds may be awarded to projects in any one of the three project categories listed below.

A. Publishing/Exhibitions/Performances

This category covers funding for research projects involving or leading to the publication of scholarly books and/or articles in professionally refereed journals, or the mounting of exhibits, productions, or performances. Examples of possible projects in this category would include funds for travel to research centers or libraries, funds for travel expenses to consult with other professionals concerning the project, or stipends to fund research time during the summer. Applicants are also encouraged to seek external funding.

B. Teaching Development and Professional Enrichment

This category covers projects directed to strengthening a faculty member's professional skills or teaching ability. It covers projects whose direct or immediate outcome is not publication or the development of a new course, although it is assumed that funded projects might lead to eventual outcomes in either or both of these areas. Examples of funding possibilities under this category include the following: participation at conferences and workshops intended to improve teaching skills or enhance understanding of the faculty member's discipline; travel expenses for consultation and study with leaders of pedagogical and disciplinary trends, as well as research at institutions that function as the centers for such movements; development of expertise in disciplines necessary for a faculty member to work on interdisciplinary projects; support to develop foreign language skills or to improve such skills either through study of that language in its native country or attendance at special language workshops and institutes in this country. Summer stipends will not be made available to support proposals in this category, and, ordinarily, a proposal merely to attend a professional conference will not be funded.

C. Departmental and Inter-Departmental Development

Departments, or interdisciplinary clusters of faculty or departments, may apply for projects directed to improving or strengthening the capacities of academic units to meet their teaching, research, and cocurricular responsibilities. Example of possible projects include the following: departmental retreats to improve teaching, to strengthen or restructure the area of concentration, to improve communication and administrative efficiency within a department or program; bringing in consultants to offer advice concerning curricular, cocurricular, and/or administrative improvements; providing seed money or matching funds for a conference or workshop sponsored by a program and directed either to colleagues in the discipline, to high school teachers, to the general public, or to undergraduate or graduate students; a lecture series. For major projects, proposals that involve matching funds are encouraged. Summer stipends will not be made available to support proposals in this category.


There are two types of awards:

1. Reimbursed expenses
2. Six-week summer stipends

Type 1, reimbursed expenses, will not normally exceed $3,750. Reimbursements for expenses are not taxable; there is no salary in this type of award. The type 2 award, a six-week summer stipend, is $2,500; this stipend carries benefits and is fully taxable. Recipients of summer stipends may not teach a summer course during the six weeks of the stipend period and preference will be given to proposals from junior faculty in this category.


The Mellon Committee will meet formally twice each year to review and recommend funding of proposals.  The
committee will meet on the 3rd Friday of October and on the 3rd Friday of March from 2:00 - 4:00 p.m.  If the
3rd Friday of March falls during spring break or Easter break, the meeting will take place on the 4th Friday of

Deadlines for submission of proposals are as follows:

· October 1, 5:00 p.m., for projects initiated during the twelve-month period beginning January 1

· March 1, 5:00 p.m., for projects initiated during the twelve-month period beginning June 1

Whenever the deadline falls on a Saturday, Sunday, or holiday, it will be extended to the first
successive working day at 5:00 p.m. If the March 1 deadline falls within spring break it will be
extended until the Monday after spring break. All proposals should be submitted electronically
to Becky Ball


Material in applications is restricted to one cover page, one budget page, and one page of narrative. Failure to provide any of the required information will render the application incomplete, and it will be returned to the applicant to be completed and resubmitted for review during the next review period.

1. Cover Page

The cover page should contain the following information:

a) Name of applicant
b) Rank
c) Department
d) Project title
e) Project category or categories (more than one may be specified if appropriate)
f) Dates of project
g) Funding type (reimbursed expenses or summer stipend) and amount requested
h) Previous Mellon awards within the last three years - give the year, title, and amount as well as a brief description of the outcome of each award and copies of previous Mellon final reports for awards received within the last three years.
i) Outside sources of funds sought for this project
j) An abstract of the project (maximum: 150 words)
k) A brief description of previous research and/or teaching experiences relevant to the project
l) Signature of the Department Chair(s) indicating that the Chair has/Chairs have seen the proposal
m) A two-page curriculum vitae.

2. Budget Page

A budget page is required only for type 1 awards (reimbursed expenses). The budget page must include a reasonably detailed explanation of how the requested funds will be spent.

The following items are ordinarily not funded:

· Editing
· Clerical help
· Graduate student assistance
· Books
· Software
· Purchase of equipment
· Conference hospitality and security

3. Narrative

The narrative must be limited to one single-spaced or double-spaced printed page and address the importance and feasibility of the project.

In creating a narrative, be mindful of the selection criteria listed near the end of this document. The information below provides additional guidance about how to frame a narrative in each of the three proposal categories.

For summer stipends, the narrative of the project should include a plan of action for the period of the stipend.


Who is the work’s intended audience? What contributions will the published outcome make to the field in particular and to the humanities in general? When, approximately, will the manuscript be ready for submission? If the research will result in a book, is the proposed book under contract? If so, with which press? If the research will result in an article, to which journal(s) do you plan to submit the article? For artistic works, when and where will the work be presented?

Teaching Development and Professional Enrichment

In what significant ways will the proposed activity improve your teaching skills or enhance your disciplinary understanding? State the direct and indirect benefits of this proposal to your academic unit and the College. In what way is any proposed travel or consultation crucial to your building the new set of skills or dispositions you are seeking to develop? If you are traveling or bringing a consultant to campus, describe the academic strength of the workshop, conference, or consultants, and describe the place, length of stay, and other particulars of the event(s) in which you intend to participate.

Departmental and Inter-Departmental Development

What is the theme and objective of the retreat, workshop, or lecture? Who will be the invited speakers? To what audience is the conference being directed? How does the theme of the conference fit into the discipline or disciplines involved?

For proposals from faculty in social science departments, a justification should be made for the humanistic nature of the project.


The role of the Mellon Committee is to recommend to the Dean proposals to be funded. The Committee is composed of one full-time ranked faculty member from each of the humanities departments, namely, the Departments of American Studies, English, Fine and Performing Arts, History, Modern and Classical Languages, Philosophy, and Theological Studies and is chaired by the Dean. Representatives serve a two-year term. American Studies, English, History, and Theological Studies select a representative in years ending in an odd number; Fine and Performing Arts, Modern and Classical Languages, and Philosophy select a representative in years ending in an even number.


In recommending proposals for funding, the Mellon Committee will utilize the following criteria:

· The overall quality and scope of the proposed project
· The anticipated intellectual and professional impact of the proposed project
· The likelihood of the proposal’s achieving its stated aims
· The level of past funding support from the College’s Mellon Fund
· Justification of the proposed budget
· In the case of individual applicants, the relationship of the proposal to one’s program of research and instruction

Proposals from junior and senior faculty are equally welcome, and will receive full consideration. Special consideration may also be accorded first-time applicants for Mellon funding who are tenured but have yet to attain the rank of full professor, as well as applicants who have not received Mellon support in the previous three years.


Successful applicants must provide the Dean with brief final reports within six weeks of completion of the projects. Those who do not file a final report are ineligible to receive future Mellon funding. Copies of resulting publications should acknowledge the impact of Mellon funding on the publications’ completion and should be forwarded electronically to Becky Ball at

February 15, 2015


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