Clark Memorial Library Excellence in Research Award

One $400 Excellence in Research Award will be presented during the campus Celebration of Scholarship. The award is sponsored by the Clark Memorial Library to recognize excellence in the research for a student paper or project presented during Celebration of Scholarship.


Papers produced during Summer 2021, Fall 2021, or Spring 2022 for an SSU course are eligible. (You may submit the same paper concurrently for a Deans’ Award.) You must present your paper at Celebration of Scholarship to be considered. If this is for a group project, each researcher must apply individually.

How to Apply

A complete application consisting of 3 parts should be submitted to

  1. Submit a research process essay: a 500 word (or more) essay describing your research process and use of library tools. Please see details for essay requirements below.
  2. Submit a Cover Sheet that includes your name, the title of your project, the course name and number, professor's name, and the semester the project was completed.
  3. Submit the final version of your project with Bibliography/Works Cited. Please contact if your project is not in digital form.

The purpose of the research process essay is to help the reviewers understand your research process and what you learned as a part of writing this research paper. Not only do the reviewers want to see the content of your product, we consider this process a learning experience, as well.

We highly suggest keeping records of your research process and learning throughout this experience. You will likely find the essay much easier to write if you do so.

Essay Requirements

Please include the following in your research process essay:

  • Discuss your search strategies. In addition to telling us a little about the particulars of your research (databases/Discovery Service used, selection of search terms, etc.), reflect on the process itself. Areas to cover: What did you do to ensure you considered multiple perspectives? In what formats did you find information for the paper and how did you determine how authoritative these sources are? What did you do when you were "stuck" during the research process?
  • Tell us what you learned about the research process itself and how will you apply that to future research – either in an academic setting or in your current or future career.
  • Tell us how you are going to use the content knowledge you gained as a result of this research. Based on what you learned, are you prompted to continue this line of research and, if so, how? Are you going to apply this in your current or future career and, if so, how?

Contact with questions.


All submissions must be emailed to by March 25, 2022 at 11:59pm.

Judges’ Rubric

The judges’ rubric is viewable here: Award Rubric (PDF)