The Pioneer Classes Dissertation Research Award

The Clinical Child Psychology Program Pioneer Classes Dissertation Research Award is designed to facilitate the completion of exceptional dissertation research in clinical child and adolescent psychology. CCPP students who have successfully defended the master's thesis are eligible to apply for the award. The award will be used to fund new research leading to completion of the dissertation. The dissertation project must be chaired by a CCPP faculty member. The award will be in the amount of $1,000. Applications will be considered annually, with a submission deadline of September 15.

Complete applications will include:

  •  a 150-word abstract of the proposal
  •  a 15-page APA-formatted proposal (double spaced, 1-inch margins, APA-style referencing) with masking of the student's identity
    • The 15-page limit includes the following: Background/Literature Review, Method, Plan for Data Analysis, Importance/Innovation, andReferences.
  • a detailed budget of proposed expenses (including sources of additional funding already dedicated to the proposed project)
  • a description of Institutional Review Board (IRB) approval status, and
  • a list of 5 potential outside expert reviewers who are (a) qualified to evaluate the study design and impact, and (b) unacquainted with the applicant.

These materials will be provided to the Director of the CCPP in electronic format by 5:00pm on September 15 (or the following Monday, if the 15th falls on a weekend). Applications that do not conform to the above instructions will be returned to the applicant without review.  The application should be accompanied by a brief letter of support from the faculty supervisor(s).  This letter of support will not be sent with the application to the reviewers. 

Applications will be evaluated by a committee of three psychologists, made up of at least one graduate of the CCPP and up to two additional external reviewers chosen by the CCPP faculty (possibly including those proposed by the applicant). Committee members will evaluate the masked proposals based on the following characteristics: innovation, potential to impact clinical/developmental literature or practice (i.e., potential for publication), methodological rigor, feasibility, and appropriateness of budget to scope of project (see attached score sheet). Based on their evaluation of these characteristics, each committee member will score the proposals in terms of the characteristics noted above. Applications with a mean total score of less than 35 will be considered "below threshold." The CCPP faculty will review the evaluations and scores provided by the committee members, and will grant the award to the student with the highest mean score. If only one proposal is submitted in a given year, funding will be granted if the committee determines that the proposal meets minimum criteria for acceptability (mean total score > 35). Reviewers will be offered a $100 honorarium for their review of the applications within one month. Announcement of the award will be made by the program director by November 1. Funds will become available November 15, and must be expended by June 15 of the following year.

The grantee/student will submit regular reports of research progress to the CCPP faculty, detailing expenditure of funds, and any significant deviations from the proposed budget. A final report and copy of the resulting manuscript will be submitted to the CCPP faculty at the conclusion of the project.

The earlier classes of students in the CCPP (the Pioneers) were instrumental in establishing the traditions of the program (specifically those who endured program activities in J. R. Pearson Hall). Thus, the award is named after them. The award will be granted subject to annual budget availability.

Past Award Recipients

  • Renee Gilbert (2023)

  • Ali Zax (2022)

  • Rachel Doyle (2022)

  • Alexandra Monzon (2020)

  • Betsy Tampke (2019)

  • Jessica Guler (2017)

  • Jennifer Blossom (2015)

  • Spencer Evans (2014)

  • Laurie Gayes (2013)

  • Erin Hambrick (2012)

  • Jason Van Allen (2011)

  • Christopher Cushing (2010)

  • Yelena Wu (2008)