Awards and Scholarships

Spring 2024

Deadline for submissions is Monday, March 25, 2024 by noon (note: Scholarship submissions will be accepted in the semester that they are due.)

Note: Only currently enrolled students are eligible. Award values are estimates only and will be determined after endowment distributions are finalized; amounts may be distributed to more than one awardee.


Submissions not following these guidelines will not be considered.

  • Submission must include a cover sheet with your name, student ID, your status (undergraduate or graduate student), the title of the award you are applying for, and your email address.
  • Submit only one entry per student.
  • DO NOT put your name on ANY page of your submission except the cover sheet.
  • Include the last 4 digits of your student ID# in the upper right hand corner of each page of your submission.
  • Submit all entries by email as a word doc or pdf to:

Scholarships Available by Student Submission

  • Bonita M. Cox Award For Classical And Medieval Literature: 
    Awarded for outstanding achievement in classical or medieval studies. The recipient will demonstrate achievement by writing the best paper addressing an arguable classical or medieval issue or theme in literature or history (e.g., the uses to which Dante puts flower metaphors as an important structural element in the divine comedy). The essays may be on any topic and from any discipline. Preference shall be given to those essays that demonstrate a clear connection between the past (classical or medieval periods) and the present.

Eligible students: Junior, Senior & Graduate students taking 6 units or more. Essays must be double‐spaced, follow the format of the MLA Style Sheet & should be 12‐25 pages.

  • The Academy Of American Poets / Virginia De Araujo Prize:
    Monetary award for best submitted poem. Open to any undergraduate or graduate student (taking 6 units or more). This prize is judged by a distinguished poet not affiliated with SJSU. A maximum of three poems may be submitted; no longer than 150 lines each.
  • Kichung Kim Scholarship:
    Scholarship awarded to an SJSU student majoring in English. Submit an essay based on American/Ethnic American Literature. Eligible students will be enrolled full time, have a minimum 2.5 GPA, & demonstrate financial need.

Scholarships Available by Faculty Submission

Open To Undergraduate Students

  • The Shirley Nelson Iverson Scholarship:
    To a freshman or junior English major with intentions of becoming a high school teacher.
  • The Lois King Thore Scholarship Fund:
    To an English Major who indicates they wish to pursue a degree in English and shows promise in short story writing.

Open To Graduate & Undergraduate Students

  • Anne Lillis Memorial Scholarship Fund:
    To an English major for excellence in Creative Writing with a preference for poetry.
  • The Robert H. Woodward Memorial Scholarship:
    The student must show significant achievement in research and scholarship in American Literature.
  • James Phelan Award for Criticism:
    Awarded to undergraduate and graduate students for verse and prose work produced in literary criticism and analysis.
  • James Phelan Award for Poetry:
    Awarded to undergraduate and graduate students for verse and prose work produced in metrical or free verse.
  • James Phelan Award for Fiction Story:
    Awarded to undergraduate and graduate students for verse and prose work produced in short story.
  • James Phelan Award for Non-fiction Essay:
    Awarded to undergraduate and graduate students for verse and prose work produced in personal essay.