Student Research Grants

Pull Quote
*Applications for the 2022-23 grants are currently closed - for off-cycle request considerations, please see the instructions below*
student history


The mission of the Mershon Center is to advance interdisciplinary and collaborative approaches to international, national, and human security.  Our understanding of international security draws from a wide range of perspectives, approaches, and substantive foci. Consequently, successful applicants may come from a variety of disciplines, including anthropology, communications, economics, geography, history, law, philosophy, political science, public affairs/administration, public policy, psychology, sociology, and other disciplines that engage international security broadly conceived.

The Mershon Center places an especially strong emphasis on supporting interdisciplinary and collaborative research. Applicants are encouraged to submit proposals including a statement on how their project will contribute to the interdisciplinary development of knowledge. (For suggestions, see R. Bendix et. al., Sustaining Interdisciplinary Collaboration: A Guide for the Academy, University of Illinois Press, 2017.) 

Proposal Requirements

Proposals must contain five parts:

  1. Standard coversheet including a 500-word abstract (available below). In a paragraph, explain how your research contributes to the development of an interdisciplinary understanding of international, national, and human security, broadly defined.
  2. Three- to five-page double-spaced proposal detailing the project or dissertation.
  3. Detailed, itemized budget. Proposals involving international travel must budget for health insurance each month of travel outside of the United States. For more information, please see Travel Insurance on the Office of International Affairs website
  4. A letter of recommendation from the project advisor or dissertation committee chair.
  5. Official copy of student’s college transcript or advising report.


Submission Instructions

All application materials should be sent via email attachments (coversheet saved as a word document) to  Please identify each electronic document with your last name and document type (i.e. smithvita.doc or smithproposal.doc).

For questions regarding the application process or any budgetary or disbursement of funds, please contact Kyle McCray, Business & Operations Manager, at or at 614-292-3810.

Students with winning grant applications will be informed in April.


Grant Recipient Expectations

Because Mershon is a center and not simply a foundation, it is expected that, in addition to making good use of research funds, grant recipients participate in some of the interdisciplinary activities sponsored by the center while they are receiving funds to support their research. Specifically, it is expected that grant recipients engage in the following activities:

  1. Attend graduate student workshop meetings, which will convene approximately twice per semester, for students to share research findings, experiences, and lessons learned. Students should expect to update other members of the workshop on their research progress at least once during the year.
  2. Engage with center activities. The Mershon Center hosts dozens of lectures, conferences and events throughout the year, and graduate students are encouraged to attend and participate in these events as often as they are able to. At a minimum, grant recipients should plan to attend at least one event per semester. 
  3. Work with Mershon Center communications to update and promote research project updates. All grant recipients will be expected to keep the Mershon Center communications specialist abreast of any research updates and discuss ways in which the center can assist in promoting or supporting research.

For questions regarding the application process or for questions regarding any budgetary or disbursement of funds, please contact Kyle McCray, Business & Operations Manager at the Mershon Center, at or at 614-292-3810.

Students with winning grant applications will be informed in April. Funds will be available for a full academic year with any extension to be approved on an as needed basis. Students who receive Mershon Center funding will be responsible for submitting a close-out report and assist with publicity by providing photos or other graphic materials. All awarded students will become Mershon Center Student Fellows that allow for a profile page on the Mershon website, access to exclusive events, and opportunities to develop and participate in interdisciplinary workshops.

All awards are subject to the rules and regulations of The Ohio State University, including travel to risk designated countries. Please contact Dru Simmons, international risk manager,, Office of Risk Management and Insurance, with questions. Research grants that include travel will be accepted during the current University travel restrictions, however, access to those funds will only be available for use once restrictions are lifted.  If you have any questions, please reach out to Kyle McCray ( if you have any specific travel related questions. 

Off-cycle requests

For any off-cycle grant requests, please complete the application form below and submit your proposal to with the subject line, "OFF-CYCLE REQUEST."  Please also reach out to Kyle McCray at or 614-292-3810 to notify him that an off-cycle request has been submitted.  These will be reviewed periodically by the selection committee.  If there is a specific timing issue that needs to be considered, please indicate that to Kyle McCray in your notification email.