Undergraduate Resources & Funding

Find the academic and financial support needed to make the student experience as smooth and enjoyable as possible.


GW Philosophy Club

The GW Philosophy Club receives a budget from the university to support speaker series events, an annual undergraduate philosophy conference each spring and a program for teaching philosophy in D.C. high schools. At the club’s regularly scheduled debate events, students bring their passion for philosophy to spirited discussions. The club is run by philosophy majors who serve in the positions of president, vice president and treasurer. Contact the department for details on how to join, and find the latest events on Facebook.


Philosophy Department Prizes and Awards 


Gauss Prize for Excellence in Philosophy

The Gauss Prize is awarded to an undergraduate student who has impressed the faculty with their commitment to and understanding of the discipline of philosophy. The award is named for Charles Gauss, who was instrumental in the founding of the department.


Excellence in Service to the Department of Philosophy Prize

The Philosophy Department awards a service prize every year to a student graduating with a philosophy degree who has contributed to the life and social environment of the department.


Thacher-Reynolds Memorial Fellowship

Since 2004, more than 15 students have written theses as Thacher-Reynolds Fellows. The fellowship provides $2,000 to philosophy majors conducting research in their final summer and academic year at GW. The fellowship is supported by donations from Michael Thacher, BA ’70, and Thomas Goutman, BA ’76.

  • Must be a current philosophy major in their junior year.
  • Must hold a minimum 3.7 GPA in philosophy courses (3.3 overall)
  • Must submit a proposal in the spring of their junior year for a research project to be conducted under the mentorship of a Philosophy Department faculty member.

To apply, email the Philosophy Department for an application or visit the main office to pick up a hard copy.

The Thacher-Reynolds Fellowship is supported by the Thacher Endowment, which was formed from generous gifts from Michael Thacher, BA ’70, and Daniel H. Weiss, BA ’79, during the 2003–04 academic year. The fund was named in honor of Matthew Reynolds, BA ’86, who died of cancer while in graduate school at New York University. Since 2004, more than 15 students have won the prize, and their names can be viewed on a plaque in the Philosophy Department’s reception area.


Special Departmental Honors

Students who wish to earn special honors designation on their transcript must meet university and department requirements.

  1. Meet GW’s general special honors requirements.
  2. Maintain a 3.7 cumulative GPA and a 3.7 in classes required for the philosophy major.
  3. Request and obtain a faculty member as a thesis advisor. Note that faculty members are under no obligation to serve as honors thesis advisors. Ideally, students should ask someone whose area of specialization is close to the chosen project topic. Students should meet with their thesis advisor regularly throughout the semester and create a timeline for completion of the thesis.
  4. Complete PHIL 4199: Directed Readings and Research OR two PHIL 4198: Proseminar courses.
  5. Complete an approved honors thesis by the April 1 deadline. Once the thesis is submitted, the department chair and thesis advisor will assign another faculty member to serve as a second reader. Final decisions on departmental honors will be announced by mid-April.


Study Abroad


The Department of Philosophy organizes an annual short-term study abroad trip to Greece. A small group of students spend the summer studying ancient Greek philosophy and history in Athens and nearby sites.

Applications are managed through the GW Office for Study Abroad. Contact the departmental study abroad and transfer credit coordinator with questions. Note that all transfer credit — including study abroad credit — must also be approved through the transfer credit coordinator. A full syllabus must be included in any credit transfer request.

A group of students sit on a bench in the ruins in Athens, Greece

Students explored sites in Greece during a summer study abroad trip.


GW Funding and Aid Resources

Center for Career Services
Take advantage of career and job search coaching, self-assessment services, résumé development, networking and more. (Services offered to students and alumni.)

Center for Undergraduate Fellowships and Research
Search and apply for undergraduate fellowships and research awards. 

Luther Rice Undergraduate Research Fellowship.
Apply for a fellowship to support a research project carried out over several weeks or across multiple semesters.

Sigelman Undergraduate Research Enhancement (SURE) Awards
Apply for a $500 grant to fund research project supplies, conference travel, off-site archival visits, videography and more.

Student Accounts Office
View current tuition and aid information. Applicants who request financial aid will be considered for all forms of aid available based on criteria including undergraduate GPA, courses taken, recommendations, extracurricular activities and GRE scores. 

Student Financial Assistance
Look for scholarships, Federal Work-Study positions, military benefits and other funding assistance.

Student Research Commons
Find paid research jobs, fellowships, seminars and other events available in the GW community.

Undergraduate Research Award
Apply for this $5,000 research award, open to first-years, sophomores and juniors.