The University of Massachusetts Amherst
University of Massachusetts Amherst

Search Google Appliance


Student Awards FAQ

Please contact with your specific questions. General questions and answers follow:

What should I include in my application?

Make sure your statement describes how this proposed assistantship will build upon prior studies and any research experience. 

What should my faculty advisor include in their letter of support?

It is important that the faculty member demonstrates a familiarity with you and your work and is really committed to mentoring and engaging with you in either their research (that you are working closely with them on) or advising your project (and contributing to your own research aspirations).

Is the fellowship funding disbursement for the entire year, or can it be for only one semester?

The award is to support a year-long assistantship project.  However, the funding can be distributed in a way that makes sense for the individual student and faculty member. Contact us specifically about your situation.  

Are the letters of support confidential?

Yes, only members of the review committee will see the letters. Ask your faculty mentor to send a confidential letter of support directly to CRF, with attention to Dr. Maureen Perry-Jenkins, via email to Do not upload the letter in the online application.

I am wondering if my research project is considered family research? How do I know?

Families are a basic unit of human and animal life and research must cross academic disciplines and engage many perspectives to fully understand family functioning. Thus, research at CRF encompasses disciplines as diverse as the life sciences, social sciences, public health and nursing, education, natural resources and a wide range of topic areas. Please be explicit about how your research may impact families, broadly defined.

I am unclear about the relationship between my proposed research project and the faculty member's research. Should my proposal be for research that is complementary to that of the faculty member or should it be for a collaborative project? Should I be proposing my own research project separate from the research with which I would assist the faculty member? 

Your project can be a separate project with close faculty mentoring or a collaborative project with the faculty mentor.  In other words, it can be either your dissertation with your advisor, or a research assistantship in which you are very involved in your faculty's project. The ultimate goal is to benefit you in your future career pursuits as a family researcher!