HINT: It involves being selected to receive $10,000!
Every year, Hopkins students arrive with strong intellectual curiosity and the unyielding craving to chase it. They are encouraged to follow their passions, dig deeper, and discover more. The Woodrow Wilson Undergraduate Research Fellowship helps them do just that.
The program provides selected students in the Krieger School of Arts & Sciences with up to $10,000 to develop research projects of their own design. Wilson fellows receive a stipend over four years to spend on research costs, which may include travel, equipment, and use of archives or laboratories. Undergraduates who receive this prestigious award are notified prior to the start of their freshman year, meaning their journey begins immediately as they set foot on the Homewood campus.
Fellowship recipients work with a faculty mentor to help them select a topic, create an action plan, and pursue their research project. With such prominent faculty at Hopkins, Wilson Fellows have access to one of the greatest resources available to our undergraduates: The expertise and mentorship of professionals across the university.
Perhaps the best part about a Wilson Fellowship is that the topic can be ANYTHING.
Want proof? One student studied the relationship between Baltimore City and their beloved football team, the Baltimore Ravens. Wanting to capture the special bond between sports teams and the people who love them, she interviewed Ravens top executives and coaches as well as local media members. She also went to every single game (including their winning Super Bowl game!) to strike up conversations with fans, documenting their experiences.
“I was lucky that the Ravens went all the way that year, but at the same time it makes sense that it happened. I studied what I’m passionate about and interested in and any research mentor at Hopkins will tell you ‘study what’s important to you, good things will come.’”
Another Wilson Fellow is currently breaking down academic barriers with his research on holistic medicine in light of British colonialism in India. Sophomore Aneek P., a premed neuroscience major with a minor in the history of science, medicine, and technology, describes how he became aware of a different kind of research:
“I guess I could have applied to take on another project at another lab. But then I let myself slow down and think about what I’ve currently been missing. I’ve never researched history before, I realized. A year ago, I was the kinda guy that would steadfastly declare that the only real research happens on a bench with pipets. But my first semester at Hopkins changed the very definition of research that I had clutched onto for so long. I saw people researching for Economics. For political science. For English.”
Other projects include travels to London to study the Olympic Games, topics like the reception and interpretation of The Great Gatsby in America and abroad, and cultural impact of the Tour de France.
In the humanities, Wilson Research Fellows have:
- Studied the Bach Suites on both period and modern instruments in Holland with Anner Bylsma and Pieter Wispelwey, recording and performing several Suites in five countries.
- Written, produced, and directed a full-length play that enjoyed a successful run in Chicago.
- Traced the iconography of an unclassified tile from the Archaeological Museum.
- Filmed a documentary about the Jewish community of Malta.
In the social sciences, Wilson Research Fellows have:
- Investigated female circumcision and obstetric fistula in Africa.
- Explored Under Armour’s marketing strategy and the relationship between its corporate culture and marketing efforts.
- Analyzed the rise of megachurches in the U.S. and the U.K.
- Studied the best practices of organ donation around the world.
In the natural sciences, Wilson Research Fellows have:
- Discovered how donations of clean, unused medical supplies from US teaching hospitals can benefit low-and-middle-income countries that are in desperate need for basic supplies.
- Researched the potential uses of adult neural stem cells.
- Studied gene expression in Down syndrome.
- Investigated the causes of childhood blindness.
- Compared maternal and neonatal health in the U.S. and India.
If you are a current undergraduate applicant, you don’t want to let this opportunity pass you by!
The application deadline is approaching on Friday, February 19, for both Early Decision and Regular Decision applicants. Click here to learn more and apply.