The John Tracy Ellis
Dissertation Award

The Ellis Dissertation Award at a Glance

Please be sure to consult the submission rules and the rest of the information on this page for the full award requirements.
What it is:

The Ellis Dissertation Award is awarded to a doctoral student in the field of Catholic Studies with a promising, but not-yet-completed dissertation.

Who is eligible:

Any U.S.- or Canada-based doctoral student with all-but-dissertation (ABD) status.

Awarded:

Annually

Purse:

$1,500

Winner announced:

Winter 2021-22

Submission instructions:

Many materials, in addition to the online form, are required. Please see the full requirements below.

Submission deadline: January 10, 2022

FOR PROFESSORS/ADVISORS ONLY: Send letters of recommendation and confirmation of ABD status.

Required Materials

The online application form with your information.

A statement from the chairperson (or director of graduate studies) of the applicant’s department certifying that he or she has completed all the degree requirements for the doctorate except for the dissertation, and has received departmental approval to undertake work on a dissertation topic dealing with some aspect of the history of the Catholic Church.

This statement should be submitted by the chairperson using the materials submission form.

A statement written by the applicant, not exceeding 1,000 words in length, describing the dissertation project and the way in which the award would be used to further its completion.

Please submit this via the online application form as a Word or PDF attachment.

Two letters of recommendation from scholars familiar with the applicant’s work, one of whom must be his or her dissertation director.

This statement should be submitted by the chairperson using the materials submission form.

A sample chapter of the dissertation, or a segment thereof, not exceeding 25 pages. Please submit this via the online application form as a PDF attachment.

About the Ellis Dissertation Award

The John Tracy Ellis Dissertation Award memorializes the scholarship and teaching of Monsignor Ellis (1905-1992). Its purpose is to assist a graduate student working on some aspect of the history of the Catholic Church.

Any author who is a citizen or authorized resident (e.g., permanent resident or student-visa holder) of the United States or Canada is eligible. The award consists of $1,500.

Prize Committee

Chair

Robert W. Shaffern
The University of Scranton

robert.shaffern@scranton.edu

Judge

James McCartin
Fordham University

jmccartin1@fordham.edu

Judge

Mary Dunn
Saint Louis University

mdunn12@slu.edu

Submission Rules

The general rules for submission are:

  1. The student must be a citizen or authorized resident (e.g., permanent resident or student-visa holder) of the United States or Canada.
  2. The student must be enrolled in a doctoral program at a recognized institution of higher education.
  3. The student must have completed all degree requirements for a doctoral degree except for the dissertation, and have received departmental approval to undertake work on a dissertation topic dealing with some aspect of the history of the Catholic Church.
  4. All completed application materials must be received by the submission deadline.

Submission deadline: January 10, 2022

Past Winners

Year Awardee Work University
2020 Mitchell E. Oxford “The French Revolution and the Making of an American Catholicism 1789 through 1870“ College of William and Mary
2019 Stephen M. Koeth, C.S.C. The Suburban Church: Catholic Parishes and Politics in Metropolitan New York, 1945-1985 Columbia University
2018 Elisabeth Davis The Centralization Controversy: Nuns, Bishops, and the Development of the American Catholic Church, 1800-1865 University at Buffalo
2017 Sean Rost A Call to Citizenship: Anti-Klan Activism in Missouri, 1921-1928 University of Missouri
2016 Jennifer Binczewski “Solitary Sparrows: Widowhood and the Catholic Community in Post-Reformation England” Washington State University
2015 Jennifer Callaghan “Critical Mass: The Fall and Rise of Latin in the long U.S. Catholic Liturgical Movement” Northwestern University
2014 Emily Floyd “Matrices of Devotion: Seventeenth- and Eighteenth-Century Limeñian Devotional Prints and Local Religion in the Viceroyalty of Peru” Tulane University
2013 Amanda Scott “The Basque Seroras: Local Religion, Gender, and Power, 1550–1800.” Washington University in St. Louis
2012 Benjamin D. Reed “Devotion to Saint Philip Neri in Colonial Mexico City” University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
2011 Matthew J. Cressler “To Be Black and Catholic: African American Catholics in Chicago from the Great Migrations to Black Power” Northwestern University
2011 Shannen Dee Williams “Black Nuns and the Struggle to Desegregate Catholic America after World War I” Rutgers University