Fellowships and Awards

The 2020 Ella Deloria Fellowship

Undergraduate Research Fellowship

Application Deadline: TBA (Varies from year to year and typically falls around the last week of March. This page will be updated when the 2020 date becomes available.)

Each year, the Department of Anthropology is pleased to present the Ella Deloria Undergraduate Research Fellowships: departmentally funded, ethnographic research fellowships for Columbia anthropology majors pursuing fieldwork during the summer between their junior and senior years. Offered since 2010, the fellowships are intended to help cover the cost of research in preparation for writing a senior thesis or in connection with an independent study project. Awards will be made based on the quality of an applicant's proposal, as well as the applicant's preparation for the proposed research. Resources permit fellowships of up to $1000 to be awarded to approximately ten juniors majoring in anthropology.

While the Ella Deloria Undergraduate Research Fellowship program is designed to support research among Columbia anthropology majors, it is also intended as a way of honoring the memory of Ella Cara Deloria (1889–1971), a member of a prominent Sioux family; a graduate of Columbia University (BA in education, 1914); one of the first truly bilingual, bicultural figures in American anthropology; and an extraordinary scholar, teacher, and spirit who pursued her own work and commitments under notoriously adverse conditions. (At one point she lived out of a car while collecting material for Franz Boas.) 

Deloria’s publications include the definitive linguistic works Dakota Texts (1932) and Dakota Grammar (1941); the ethnographic classic on Dakota culture, Speaking of Indians (1944); and the virtually avant-garde Waterlily (begun in the 1940s), a novel/ethnography which pushed the boundaries of academic writing by being an "unself-conscious and never precious or quaint pairing of scholarship and fiction" (Kirkus Reviews). 

It is to Ella Deloria's spirit that the Department of Anthropology's undergraduate research fellowship program is dedicated.

Applicants should submit a proposal articulating the following:

  • The purpose of the project and your understanding of its anthropological significance. What makes this project so compelling?
  • The particular skills, experience, and studies the applicant brings to the project. How have you prepared for this project and what literature do you draw on?
  • A detailed description of exactly how the project will be carried out. What sorts of questions will be asked? What is the project's specific focus? Where is the project site and what is its timing? 

The proposal should include a project title as well as a brief budget. The complete proposal should be no longer than four double-spaced pages. Five copies of the proposal should be submitted to the designated box in the Department of Anthropology office, 452 Schermerhorn Extension, by the deadline.

Questions concerning this research fellowship may be addressed to the current DUS, Professor Pemberton.

The Robert Stigler Fund for Archaeological Fieldwork

Research Scholarship

Application Deadline: TBA (Applications are due each spring, most often in mid-April. This page will be updated when the 2020 date becomes available.)

Each spring, the Columbia University Department of Anthropology accepts applications for the Robert Stigler Fund for Archaeological Fieldwork. This scholarship is intended to help cover the costs of summer fieldwork. All full-time students at Columbia and Barnard, both undergraduate and graduate, are eligible to apply, excepting those students who will graduate before their proposed field season. Preference will be given to students majoring in Archaeology and Anthropology, but students in other related fields (e.g., Art History and Archaeology, Classics) may also apply. Awards typically range from $300–$1000, depending on the needs of the student. The Department anticipates being able to support eight to ten students, depending on the available funding.

Award Rules

Awards are most often given for travel costs to archaeological field locations. On occasion, some per diem costs may be covered, as well as incidental supplies (e.g. trowels, brushes, paper, gloves).  The award may not be used to pay the costs of tuition or room and board at a field school.

Announcement of Awards

The amount of money available for grants in the Stigler Fund varies from year to year, as it is derived from a bequest. The Department will announce award recipients as soon as the amount of the annual award is determined; this is typically in May.

Procedures and Accounting

The amount of the award is deposited into students' accounts except when other arrangements are made.  Upon returning from the field, students must provide receipts and any other relevant back-up documentation via email to Courtney Hooper, DAAF for the Department of Anthropology. Receipts must be in the name of the recipient. If a student requires funds to be provided via another method (e.g., reimbursement), that should be discussed with Courtney Hooper.

The application must contain the following:

  • Title page, with full name, UNI, program (major and school), email address, mailing address, phone number, title of project, and research location.
  • A three to four page description of the proposed fieldwork, including the nature of the project or field school and how participating in the project will contribute to the student's education
  • An itemized budget
  • An up-to-date transcript
  • The names of two faculty at Columbia University who can be contacted for a recommendation

More information on the application process will be available in early spring.