Scholarships And Awards Offered By the History Department

If you wish to apply for any of the following awards, and believe you meet the qualifications, please write a letter addressed to The Department of History Awards Committee, and submit to the departmental secretary (TLC Room 3200) no later than February 1.

The letter should be limited to one page, and should summarize your qualifications for the award for which you are applying. Please include an address, telephone number, and social security number.

If you apply for more than one award, please prepare separate and specific letters for each application.


    1. History Club Papers
      • The Hellen J. Jackson Undergraduate Paper Award
      • The Albert S. Hanser Graduate Paper Award
    2. W. Cope Goodwin Memorial Scholarship Fund
    3. The Elizabeth Leonard Parker Award for Historical Writing
    4. The Whatley Scholarship
    5. Abraham Baldwin Chapter of The National Society of The Daughters of the American Revolution (NSDAR) American History Award
    6. The Bryson Prize
    7. Kennedy History Graduate Award of Excellence
    8. Fitz-Simons Public History Award

History Club Paper Competition Guidelines

a.       Papers submitted may concern any historical topic, but must substantially utilize historical methodology.

b.       The paper must be twelve to fifteen pages in length (not including title page, endnotes, or bibliography). It must be typed, double spaced, and include endnotes and a bibliography that conform to the Chicago Manual of Style or Kate Turabian's Guide to Writers.

c.        The writer's name, address, and telephone number must be listed only on the title page.

d.       Three copies of each paper must be submitted to the History Club advisor early each February at a time determined by that advisor.

e.       Judging will be the responsibility of a special committee of three history department members, one an Americanist, one a European specialist, and one "third world". Their selections will be based on how well the papers meet these criteria: coverage of a well-defined topic or thesis, writing style, originality, use of sources, overall quality.

f.        The winning undergraduate writer will receive The Hellen J. Jackson Undergraduate Paper Award, and a $100 prize.

g.       The winning graduate student writer will receive The Albert S. Hanser Graduate Paper Award, and a $100 prize.

h.       The competition is open only to History Club members. Those interested in joining the club should contact a member of the club, a faculty member, or the departmental secretary. Dues are $5.00 annually

W. Cope Goodwin Memorial Scholarship Fund

This scholarship shall be awarded annually by a Committee appointed by the Chairman of the University of West Georgia Department of History. The amount of the annual award varies. In awarding, the following criteria shall be applied. The Scholarship shall be designated for a rising junior or senior with a 3.0 or better grade point average (GPA) who is majoring in History. Preference may be given to students who are residents of the State of Georgia, working toward a B.A. or B.S.Ed. in History, and who demonstrate financial need.

The Elizabeth Leonard Parker Award for Historical Writing

In 1978, Elizabeth L. Parker, long time Registrar and member of the University of West Georgia's History Department, provided funds for an award for the best student research paper on Georgia history. Miss Parker's award was motivated by her loyalty to the University of West Georgia and her interest in the state's history. A History Department committee determined that the award should be $100 and a certificate.

Any UWG student may submit a paper on a topic involving Georgia history. It should be between ten and thirty typed, double-spaced pages, and should utilize Turabian's Manual in respect to style. Papers should be submitted to the department no later than February 15.

Whatley Scholarship

This memorial scholarship fund is in memory of VACHEL DAVIS WHATLEY, SR., a prominent educator in Carroll County, who believed that by a thorough study of history, nations could avoid making the same mistakes as their forebears and the quality of life for subsequent generations could be vastly improved.

The recipient must be a Sophomore, who has declared a History major at the University of West Georgia, and who intends to pursue a four-year curriculum at the University of West Georgia, graduating with a BA Degree with a major in History. Those persons empowered to select a recipient, shall give equal consideration to qualified and eligible students from Polk and Carroll Counties for selections as recipient of the scholarship. If no student is selected from one of these two counties, an eligible and qualified student from Troup County may be selected. If no student is selected from the above counties, an eligible and qualified student who is a resident of any county in the State of Georgia, may be selected. To qualify for the scholarship the recipient shall be selected in the manner, or process, established by the Foundation in making awards of merit and based on scholarship achievement while a student at the University of West Georgia. Financial need may be given due consideration. The Chair of the History Department shall appoint a committee to select the recipient.

Abraham Baldwin Chapter of The National Society of The Daughters of the American Revolution (NSDAR) American History Award

The Abraham Baldwin Chapter of the NSDAR American History Award shall be made annually by a committee established by the Department of History. The minimum amount of the award shall be $125.00. In awarding, the following criteria shall be applied:

The award shall be designated for a UWG non-traditional female pursuing a Bachelor of Arts Degree in History with a concentration in American History.

The recipient must be a rising senior with a minimum 3.0 GPA.

The Bryson Prize

The purpose of the Bryson Prize, an academic honor established by Dr. Robert Claxton in 1988, is two-fold. (1) It memorializes Dr. Thomas Archer Bryson III (1931-1980) who taught history at the University of West Georgia from 1967 until his death and who authored several articles and books in diplomatic history. (2) The Bryson Prize also recognizes one University of West Georgia undergraduate annually for outstanding achievement in international studies.

The University of West Georgia is an institutional member of the Georgia Consortium for international education. In 1987, the Consortium board authorized a monetary award and a recognition certificate for one student at each member institution in the University System each year for excellence in international affairs study. At the University of West Georgia the student so designated receives the monetary award and certificate on Honors Day and his/her name is engraved on the Bryson Memorial Plaque which the History Department keeps in the Ingram Library lobby.

Qualifications for the Bryson Prize:
To be eligible for the Bryson Prize, a student must:

(1)      be a United States citizen (and not an international student)

(2)      have undergraduate status at State University of West Georgia

(3)      have earned a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.20

(4)      have completed at least 15 quarter credit hours of a foreign language

(5)      have completed at least 15 additional credit hours of courses in the social sciences (including geography and economics) or the humanities which have primarily an international education content

(6)      have significant international education experience outside the classroom through such activities as a study abroad program or participation in a model international body or some other equivalent

In the event that several student nominees meet all of these basic qualifications, the Bryson Prize shall be awarded to that student nominee with the highest cumulative grade point average. No person may receive the Bryson Prize twice.

Annual Procedures for the Selection of the Bryson Prize Recipient:

By January 15, the Chair of the History Department will designate a selection committee. The selection committee chair will be a member of the History Department. Another member of the selection committee will be, if possible, the institutional representative to the Georgia Consortium board. The committee will have a third member whom the History Chair will select from international specialists in the following disciplines: anthropology, economics, foreign languages, geography, political science. The committee will have three members, ideally from three different departments. the representative to the Consortium board will obtain the check and certificate by the day the Honors Program Committee designates. The committee chair will coordinate selection by the announced deadline and he or she will take responsibility for the engraving after Honors Day.

By February 1, the selection committee chair will send an e-mail request to every full-time faculty member, asking for the names of students believed to meet the qualifications. By March 1, or an earlier date if the Honors Program Committee so designates, the selection committee will receive the nominations, verify the qualifications of the nominees, and select a recipient. The committee chair will notify both the Honors Program Committee representative and the recipient of the selection.

Kennedy History Graduate Award of Excellence

The Kennedy Graduate Award of Excellence was established by W. Benjamin Kennedy, Professor Emeritus of History. The award is for M.A. graduate students majoring in history who are taking classes at the .University of West Georgia. The award is a cash prize of $250, and should be given to the recipient at the annual Honors Day/Phi Alpha Theta ceremony.

To qualify for the award, the student must meet the following:

          a.       Be a regularly admitted history student in the Masters of Arts program.

          b.       Have completed at least nine (9) of the thirty-six semester hours required for the degree.

          c.       Be nominated by a member of the graduate faculty in the history department.

          d.       Have satisfied the foreign language reading requirement for the Masters of Arts in History.

          e.       Show evidence of excellence in history graduate work through grades in courses, participation in internships, research and writing, or such criteria as the History Awards committee thinks fit.

          f.       Receive a vote of support from the History Graduate Studies committee and a recommendation from the Graduate Studies Coordinator.

          g.       Be confirmed by members of the departmental Awards Committee.  

          h.       If there is no suitable candidate for the award in a given year the award money may be rolled over to be added to the award in the year to follow.

 If at all possible, the recipient should attend the awards ceremony where the award of excellence will be announced.

Theodore B. Fitz-Simons Public History Award $50.00

The Theodore B. Fitz-Simons Award was established in 2001 in recognition of Mr. Fitz-Simons’s commitment to community outreach during his tenure teaching at the University of West Georgia. He lectured extensively in the community about topics related to Reconstruction, the Gilded Age, and the Progressive Era and participated in the Georgia Political Heritage Project and local history programs.

This award is presented annually to recognize a graduate or undergraduate history student who demonstrates excellence in the field of public history through scholarship and service activities. Undergraduate students should be a junior or senior majoring in history. All recipients must have a minimum GPA of 3.0.

History faculty should submit nominations for the Fitz-Simons Public History Award to the Public History Coordinator no later than February 15 of each year.

The recipient’s name will be engraved each year on a plaque to be housed in the History Department.

For more information regarding the History Department at the University of West Georgia, please go to