Research Grants

Author: Linnie Caye

What can the Genevieve D. Willis Research Grant help me to achieve?

The Genevieve D. Willis Research Grant is a competitive grant awarded to students in the Gender Studies Program who plan to undertake research in preparation for a senior thesis/essay in either Gender Studies or their primary major.  The grant awards up to $1,000 for expenses incurred during research, including, but not limited to, books and materials and travel expenses and accommodations.  Recipients of the grant have the opportunity to receive feedback on their work from faculty, graduate students, and fellow undergraduates and will be expected to submit their thesis/essay for the annual Genevieve D. Willis Gender Studies Senior Thesis Prize competition or the annual Philip L. Quinn Essay Prize competition.

What can I write with a Genevieve D. Willis Research Grant?

Theses of past recipients cover a variety of interests. They include:

Kelly McGauley, “Exploring the Role of the Governess in Victorian and Gothic Fiction
Amanda Lewis, “Perceptions and Realities: Discerning the Relationship between Mayan Women and the Roman Catholic Church
Danny Nolan, “Coming Out and Identity Formation in Gay Male Teens
Patrick Tighe, “Matrilineal and Christian Traditions: Moral Resources Against Ghanaian Female Subjugation
Andrea Torres Hermoza, “Women’s Changing Roles in Latin American Politics
Daniela De Luna, “Bebe a Bordo: Teenage Pregnancy among Mexican-American Girls


The Genevieve D. Willis Endowment for Excellence has been established to promote excellence in undergraduate research in Gender Studies at Notre Dame through the following initiatives:

Undergraduate Writing Prizes
Summer Research Grants for Senior Theses/Essays

Application Process for the Genevieve D. Willis Senior Research Grant:

1) Junior majors in Gender Studies have priority in the application process for these grants. Junior minors, sophomore majors, or sophomore minors who plan to undertake research for their senior theses/essays in either Gender Studies or their primary major over the course of the next two summers may also apply for these grants; the research must have an explicitly gendered-component. All junior and sophomore majors and minors are notified by email of this opportunity in the Spring semester. Interested students should meet with the Director of Undergraduate Studies and their chosen faculty advisors about their grant applications.

2) To apply, submit the following application materials to the Director of Undergraduate Studies by NOON on the First Friday in April:

i.1-2-page prospectus (summary) of the research project, including the working title, a statement of the topic, proposed methodology, projected scope of project, and rationale for the receipt of a summer research grant to advance the project.

ii. 1-page budget (up to $1000 for domestic projects; see DUS for international projects) for archival or field research and/or books and materials for the summer portion of the research project. The amount of funding awarded will be determined by the number and quality of applications received.

iii. A completed copy of the Research Grant Application (pdf).

4) A major or minor who wins a grant will be awarded the funds by the last day of the Spring semester.

5) The major or minor conducts research over the summer months, and then submits to the Director of Undergraduate Studies and the senior essay advisor a 5-page summary of the results of the research by September 1st.


All documentation (Application, Prospectus, Budget Sheet and 5-page Summary) should be submitted electronically to