College of Arts and Sciences

Department of English


Undergraduate Scholarships, Awards, and Application Procedures

All English majors who wish to be considered for Bundy, Jerard, Rawlins, or Seehafer Scholarships must complete an "Application for English Department Scholarship," available from the department office in Avery 202. The annual deadline for application is the second Monday in February during the spring semester prior to the academic year for which support is sought. The application form requires the following supporting materials: a writing sample, a letter of recommendation from a relevant instructor, paragraphs on three books read outside of class assignments during the previous year, and, for those declaring financial need, a brief statement describing that need and a consent form granting department access to financial aid information. Although an individual student will not be awarded more than one of these four Scholarships during a given academic year, an applicant may request consideration for any for which he or she may be eligible.

Basil and Ella Alexander Jerard Scholarship

These Scholarships are given to outstanding, full-time English majors on the basis of merit (or a combination of merit and financial need). Minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 is required to Apply. Recipients (eight to ten students annually) receive a $1,000 award toward tuition ($500 each semester).

Murray W. Bundy Scholarship

Two or more Scholarships can be given annually to outstanding, full-time, junior or senior English majors committed to a career in secondary teaching; recipients receive a $1500 award toward tuition ($750 each semester). Minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 and enrollment in English Teaching option is required to Apply.

April Seehafer Scholarship Fund

This scholarship is awarded to undergraduate women majoring in the English options of Rhetoric and Professional Writing or Literary Studies. Candidates must have at least a 3.0 GPA, be of sophomore standing or above, and a demonstrated need for additional resources to afford educational expenses. Recipients receive a $1,000 award toward tuition ($500 each semester).

Jennie Brown Rawlins Scholarship in Creative Writing

This scholarship is given to undergraduate students who have demonstrated abilities in either poetry or fiction. Recipients receive a $1,000 award toward tuition ($500 each semester).

Eva Feryl Peterson Scholarship

Awarded to graduate or undergraduate Native American women interested in pursuing a graduate degree in English. Recipients may receive up to $3,000 total. The award is usually dispersed in $1,000 increments annually toward tuition. Interested undergraduate applicants should consult with the Director of Undergraduate Studies.

Emmett and Mary Avery Writing Awards

English majors and other undergraduates in lower- and upper-division writing and literature classes are eligible for these annual awards on a nomination basis only. Papers are submitted to the competition by decision of individual English instructors; recipients receive a $100 award credited to their university account and a recognition gift.


Graduate Scholarships, Awards, and Fellowships

Currently we have no full-ride fellowships available. The Graduate School allocates to the department two $2000 fellowships renewable for a second year. These are intended to supplement T.A. or R.A. appointments, as are the department's Peterson fellowship awards. Both the Graduate School and the department offer summer dissertation fellowships.

Peterson Fellowship

The Eva Feryl Peterson Fellowship for Native American women was established by the gift of the late Mrs. Peterson, a former educator in Lewiston, Idaho, who was interested in the Northwest Indian Nations. Recipients must meet WSU admissions standards and will be chosen on the basis of qualifications for graduate study and motivation to complete a Master of Arts degree program in English. Recipients will receive a stipend of $2000 per year, for two years, normally to supplement a Teaching Assistantship. Assistantships carry a salary of approximately $11,000 per year plus a tuition waiver. Assistance with relocation expenses and summer support may also be available. In addition, recipients are eligible to Apply for a year of teaching employment after completing the degree. The Peterson Trust also supports activities on campus that promote awareness of the culture of Native American peoples.

Avon J. Murphy Scholarship

The Avon J. Murphy Scholarship, established in January 2006, will be awarded each year to a currently enrolled graduate student in the Department of English.  The monetary value of the award is $1000, it must be used at WSU and cannot be distributed among two or more students.  The scholarship is merit-based, and the selection criteria, in descending order of importance, are as follows:  (1) demonstrated promise for future academic achievement; (2) academic merit; (3) demonstrated academic leadership; (4) demonstrated creativity; and (5) demonstrated contributions to campus life and environment.

Schleiner Awards

Established in memory of Louise Schleiner, the Schleiner Book Award ($100) goes to students who pass the Ph.D. Qualifying and Preliminary Examinations with distinction. Students who must travel to collections to conduct research necessary to the dissertation may Apply for the Schleiner Research Travel Award (one $500 award is available each year).


Postdoctoral Fellowships

Charles Blackburn Postdoctoral Fellowship

Each year the department entertains nominations for the Charles Blackburn Postdoctoral Fellowship. It is awarded to a WSU student who has received the Ph.D. in English or American Studies on or before May 15 in the year of application. Criteria for selection include:

  • promise in the profession of literary studies, as indicated by the outstanding quality of the dissertation
  • overall academic achievement
  • outstanding teaching performance

A detailed nomination letter (ordinarily from the advisor), the student's CV, and an abstract of the dissertation should be given to the Director of Graduate Studies one week following the successful oral defense of the dissertation. A copy of the dissertation should also be available to the department for examination. Late in the spring semester, nominations are reviewed by the Graduate Studies Committee, which makes recommendations to the chair.













Department of English, PO Box 645020, Washington State University, Pullman WA 99164-5020, 509-335-2581, Contact Us