Hassenfeld Summer Grant for Undergraduate Research


The Hassenfeld Grant for Undergraduate Research in Urban Studies strengthens the opportunity for students to conduct research on a significant urban topic, a cornerstone of Penn's Urban Studies Program. Since its inception, the program has required all majors to complete an original research project through the fall semester Senior Seminar. Often, the research question that students pursue arises from the internships they complete in URBS300: Fieldwork Seminar during spring junior year. Students write a theory-practice essay for the seminar that identifies a significant question for future research.
The Hassenfeld Grants for Undergraduate Research in Urban Studies provide Urban Studies majors and minors with the opportunity to explore questions arising out of their internship or other coursework in Urban Studies by supporting independent research in the summer before senior year. Grants of up to $3,500 for research and expenses are awarded to 2-3 students each year on a competitive basis.

Students who wish to apply for a Hassenfeld Grant must identify a faculty advisor and submit a proposal to the Urban Studies Program. Proposals must include the following parts:

1) cover sheet with title, researcher's name, and date   
2) signed letter from a faculty advisor, indicating plan to support your research over the summer months        
3) description of the questions to be addressed and why they are significant
4) brief biographical statement including reasons for personal interest in undertaking this research
5) summary of the project citing the literature that frames the research
6) research plan, detailing the steps to be followed and methods used
7) schedule for the project
8) itemized budget for research expenses

The Urban Studies Advisory Committee will review the proposals and select recipients on the basis of:

1) overall quality of the proposal,
2) significance of the research questions,
3) whether the proposed research plan is appropriate and sufficient to answer the questions posed,
4) feasibility within the period of the grant and for the senior seminar.

Grant recipients will be responsible for submitting a mid-summer report. Additionally, recipients will give a presentation to the Senior Seminar class in September, detailing data collected, preliminary analysis, and plans for completing the senior seminar research.

The application deadline for the Summer 2024 Hassenfeld Grant is Friday, April 26th. 

Email applications to Elaine Simon in the Urban Studies office, with Hassenfeld and your name in the subject line: urbs@sas.upenn.edu.

Previous Hassenfeld Grant recipients