Independent Minds, Working Together
Student and faculty member talking in front of stage in theatre.

The Support You Need to Succeed

If you have what it takes, we've got what you need

You can learn a great deal about how to approach your I.S. from working with faculty members on their research.

Through Wooster's Summer Research Program, for example, you'll have the opportunity to assist faculty in such projects as magazine editing, studying the effect of environmental conditions on monarch butterfly coloration, coring 200-year old trees to find evidence of global warming, and organizing materials for the study of popular religious culture.

Think of it as an apprenticeship: with sleeves rolled up and eyes wide open, you'll absorb more than you know. And when it comes time to tackle your I.S. — having spent two weeks in England collecting 150-million-year-old fossils, for example — you won't be intimidated. The experience might even lead you to your I.S. topic.

Abundant workspace

The Flo K. Gault Library for Independent Study — one of three libraries on campus — reserves more than 300 study carrels for seniors working on I.S. projects. Most are wired to the campus network, through which you can connect to academic libraries throughout the state, gaining access to more than 44 million books and other materials. There's also wireless access throughout the library.

If you're a science or art student, you'll have access to dedicated lab or studio space. And when it comes time to present your I.S., you'll have the resources to do it well: every studio art major gets a public exhibition of his or her work; every music performance major gives a recital.

Financial support

To bring that elaborate or especially ambitious I.S. project within reach, Wooster has two funding opportunities. The Henry J. Copeland Fund for Independent Study offers competitive grants that can assist you with such I.S.-related expenses as travel, supplies, and conference registration. The Kendall-Rives Latin American Research Grant makes available approximately $10,000 each year to Wooster sophomores or juniors to support a research project on some aspect of United States-Latin American Relations. Research projects must be conducted in a Latin American country in preparation for, or as part of, a senior Independent Study project in any major. 

In a recent year, Copeland grants totaling more than $90,000 were awarded to students to defray research expenses for such projects as researching mariachi music in Guadalajara, studying the lives of West African immigrants in Paris, producing a documentary film on survivors of Hiroshima, and studying ways to purify methane gas to permit its use as renewable energy source.

The Copeland Fund and the Kendall-Rives Latin American Research Grant, along with the rest of the College's resources, is here to support your abilities — and expand your possibilities.