Ray and Lorna Coppinger Endowment Grants

For student or student-faculty research projects in the cognitive or biological sciences

History of the Coppinger Grant

Ray Coppinger, a founding member of the faculty, was a leader in establishing Hampshire's emphasis on student inquiry and research. The Ray and Lorna Coppinger Endowment was established in 2006 to support student and student-faculty collaborative research in the cognitive and biological sciences.

Description of the grant

Award: $3,000 maximum to be paid as reimbursement upon submission of receipts

Proposals that concern animal behavior, comparative cognition, evolution, ecology, or environmental science are given priority, but the program is not restricted to these areas.

Funds can be used for equipment, travel to field sites, housing (if not provided for internships/assistantship), transport, supplies, or other direct research expenses. The endowment does not support food expenses, faculty salary, or conference travel, although in some cases student travel to professional conferences can be supported.

Application Requirements

You must meet these requirements before applying:

  • CS funding is available for Div II and Div III students. In some cases, Div I students interested in summer research can apply.
  • You must be a current student at the time of the research project/internship. Graduating students are not eligible.
  • Applications will be evaluated on the intellectual merit of the proposed work and the necessity of the budget items, as justified in your proposal.
  • Applicants must have the support of a faculty supervisor or mentor.
  • Grant recipients are expected to submit a mid-project report and a final report prior to the grant ending.
  • If you plan to be on leave, it must be a field study leave and not a leave of absence.
  • Grants are not awarded retroactively for past projects or conferences. Projects must not yet be completed upon request for funding.
  • You must be in good academic and good disciplinary standing.
  • The application process is competitive and all applications may not receive funding, as funds are limited.

If you are an international student, make sure to visit the office of multicultural and international student services to confirm that your research project is compatible with your visa status.

If you plan to pursue your research abroad, the global education office provides information on visas, immunizations, etc. and offers resources for field study in the U.S. or abroad.

Types of funding available

The Coppinger Endowment supports two types of research:

1) Independent student research or student-faculty collaborative research in the fields of animal behavior, wildlife biology, comparative cognition (animal vs. human), evolution, ecology, or environmental science. These areas are given priority, but the program is not restricted to those research areas. Proposals from students must have the support of a faculty supervisor or mentor. See application guidelines.

Download application (pdf)

2) Research assistantship, internship, or field study working with a member of the Hampshire faculty, or with a faculty member at another institution, in the fields listed above. This can be done during the school year or the summer. The sponsoring faculty member will need to provide a letter that describes the internship or assistantship and the student's role and responsibilities. If the student intends to work with a non-Hampshire faculty member, the student must provide a letter of support from the faculty member with whom the work will be done, and from a Hampshire College faculty member overseeing and approving the student's plans and budget. Interested students should contact the sponsoring faculty member/researcher directly and negotiate the internship/assistantship placement directly with that faculty member, and the student is responsible for applying to the Coppinger Fund for support.

Download application (pdf)

Application Submission

Please compile all documents listed in the application as one PDF file and email your complete application to Jane Couperus, dean of the School of Cognitive Science, at jcouperus@hampshire.edu.

  • The maximum award amount available for each proposal is $3,000.
  • Funding is competitive.
  • Funding will be paid as reimbursement to student for project expenses.
  • Proposals are currently evaluated by the deans of cognitive science and natural science, who consult other faculty members in CS and NS as necessary.
  • Applications are accepted in early fall term and late spring term each year.

Application deadline: October 14, 2016

Project Requirements

Written Reports

Recipients of Coppinger grants are required to write a progress report and a final report. Papers, published abstracts, conference posters, or notices of the work should be attached to the report. You will also occasionally be asked to give presentations of your work. We encourage you to take photos during your project to promote the Coppinger grant to donors and for display on the Cognitive Science website, newsletter, brochures, flyers, etc.

Expense Reimbursements

Grant recipients will receive funding as reimbursements for the expenses listed in their budgets. Reimbursements will be provided upon submission of scanned  receipts as the student is expected to keep the original receipts for tax purposes.

Read Comprehensive Project Requirements


For any questions re. the Coppinger grant, please contact Jane Couperus, dean of the School of Cognitive Science, at jcouperus@hampshire.edu.

Coppinger Funded Projects

Since 2006 the endowment has supported numerous student and student/faculty collaborations.

Learn More About Coppinger Funded Projects in the Field

Jacob Drucker's Div III work in the Magdalena River Valley, Columbia.

Erica Hample's Div II research in Monteverde, Costa Rica.

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With CS Grants Administrator
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Bea Cusin
CS Grants Administrator
Mail Code ASH
Hampshire College
893 West Street
Amherst, MA 01002
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