Promoting Dialogue and Learning: About the Frances Fowler Wallace Memorial Award

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The Frances Fowler Wallace Memorial for Mental Health Dissertation Award  provides funding of up to $1,500 to support dissertation research expenses of doctoral students at The University of Texas at Austin. The foundation is currently accepting proposals for the award. Information about the application process can be found here.

Mental health must be central to the proposed projects. For the purposes of this award, mental health is broadly defined. Projects may focus on any aspect of mental health including promotion, prevention, early intervention, treatment or workforce-related concerns. Judgment of the merit of the proposal will be based on the description of the proposed research and its relevance to improving mental health in Texas.

Doctoral students are expected to show capacity for advanced academic work as well as the ability to design and conduct rigorous and relevant research studies. Receiving funding awards to support research as a doctoral student is an important part of building a research agenda and a career in research.  A former Frances Fowler Wallace Memorial award recipient is Dr. Tierney Ahrold Lorenz, a recipient of the award in 2011 as a doctoral student in the University of Texas at Austin’s Department of Psychology.  Her dissertation evaluated the efficacy of exercise in treating sexual side effects of antidepressant medication.

“The Wallace Memorial Award allowed me to pursue a much more ambitious dissertation project than I could have completed without the funding. I was able to run a controlled clinical trial, which not only gave me valuable training but helped translate my pre-dissertation lab work into an intervention with the potential to improve treatment of women with depression,” Lorenz said of the award. She continues to research the interaction of sexuality and depression as a post doctorate research fellow at the Kinsey Institute at Indiana University and has been the recipient of both federal and foundation grants.

“Applying for my own research funding in my doctoral program was an integral part of my training. Even small awards help establish doctoral students as responsible scientists with commitment to their research agendas,” said Tierney. “The Wallace Award helped me directly by providing resources, but also indirectly by signaling to other funders that I can demonstrate how my research fits into a public health agenda. Moreover, awards like the Wallace Award are a much needed recognition of your hard work in graduate school, and help bolster your motivation to complete an impressive, rigorous project at the end of a long degree.”

We invite doctoral students at The University of Texas at Austin to apply for this award.  Begin establishing your research agenda and a career in research now.

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