SOAR

Summer Research Grants

Overview

The goal of the Student Opportunities for Academic Research (SOAR) summer research grant is to facilitate student research in collaboration with a faculty mentor. Projects may be based on a faculty member's existing research or newly designed by the student and faculty mentor. SOAR provides students and their faculty mentor a stipend for up to ten weeks of full-time work. Proposals may also include a request for project expenses. The SOAR committee invites students and faculty to submit proposals for the Summer Research Grant by Monday, March 15th.

Eligibility

At the time of the project, a student must be of at least sophomore standing, and have completed at least one full-time semester at Moravian College. If the QPA of the student is less than 3.0, the faculty mentor will include an explanation of why the student is recommended for the program in the cover-page form.

At the time of the project, a faculty member must be a current full-time faculty, an Emeritus faculty member of the college, or a current adjunct faculty member who has taught at the college for at least two full years.

Calendar and Compensation

  1. The official summer research program runs for ten weeks, beginning the first day of the Summer Session
    • Applicants may request shorter time periods with student and faculty stipends adjusted accordingly. Students may not work more than the equivalent of ten 40-hour weeks (400 hours total)
    • Applicants may request a time period beginning before the official start or ending after the official end of the summer program, as needed based on their research plans, but the official program encompasses the 10-week period beginning the first day of Summer Session I and as much overlap with that period as possible is strongly encouraged. The application should clarify how the student will engage with the program as a whole if their proposed time period is substantially off-set from the usual SOR period.
  2. Students receive a $3,000 stipend and work 40 hours per week during the program.
  3. Faculty members receive $1000 if working with one student or $1750 if working with two students (even if the students are on different projects). SOAR no longer accepts proposals with more than two students.
  4. The availability of on-campus housing is not yet determined for this summer.
  5. In addition to the standard stipend, applicants may request up to $500 per student for equipment, supplies and/or travel expenses. If the project involves travel outside the continental United States, the request may be up to $1,000 for travel expenses. Travel expenses must be travel for the purpose of conducting the research. Travel for conference presentations can be requested via separate SOAR Travel Grants.

Expectations

  1. Each student meets regularly with his or her faculty mentor.
  2. Students and faculty mentors attend regular meetings where SOAR participants share their work.
  3. Students and faculty work with Public Relations to produce a profile of the student and his or her project.
  4. Students participate in the Moravian College Scholar's Day.
  5. By the first day of the fall semester, the faculty member submits a report (template provided) to the SOAR director assessing the project.
  6. By the first day of the fall semester, the student submits a report (template provided) to the SOAR director describing his or her accomplishments for the project.

Note re: COVID-19 Pandemic

At this point we are hopeful that the 2021 summer SOAR program will take place undeterred, but we may well expect at a minimum certain kinds of changes, such as reduced or eliminated social gathering opportunities, weekly colloquium meetings held virtually, etc. The SOAR program will follow any directions given by the CDC, federal and local government, and Moravian College. The health of our students, faculty, staff, and larger community is our top priority. It may be difficult or even impossible for us to support projects requiring on-campus/in-person work, but at this time we are optimistic that we can accommodate both in-person and remote research projects and we are accepting applications for either type.

As noted above, we cannot at this time determine whether such summer housing will be available. Students may indicate in their application whether they would like such housing if it is available, and we will ask about whether it would be difficult or impossible to complete your project without housing. We will not use housing needs as part of the decision process for acceptance, but it may ultimately be necessary for some students to decline their acceptance if they require housing and we cannot offer it.

In these unpredictable times, we are all adapting to changes as they arise. We will continue to monitor COVID-related restrictions and regulations as they evolve to determine what restrictions may be necessary for the 2021 summer SOAR fellowship program.