ACPA Emerging Scholar-Designees are selected through an award program. Emerging Scholar-Designees award winners are named on an annual basis, following a nomination process and extensive review of their qualifications.  

Applications and nominations for Emerging Scholars is now closed.  Applications and nominations for 2021 will open in early fall of 2020.  For additional information, contact Raechele Pope ([email protected]) or Maureen Wilson ([email protected]).  

Application Information

Applicants must be an ACPA member. In addition, applicants must be within 3-5 years after completing their doctorate or within 2-5 years after entering a tenure-track faculty position.

Applicants for 2020-2022 ACPA Emerging Scholar-Designee must submit the following materials in a single PDF document by September 30, 2019:

  • Letter of interest that includes three proposed scholarly leadership commitments (see below)

  • Current CV

  • At least one recommendation letter

  • Research project proposal of no more than three single-spaced pages, excluding cover page and reference list

Research Project Proposal

Proposal must include, at minimum, all five of these elements:

  1. A description of the proposed research project and how it advances the applicant’s broader research agenda.

  2. A proposed time frame (ordinarily, no longer than the designee’s two-year term as ACPA Emerging Scholar-Designee).

  3. A brief project budget totaling $3,000. Funds may be used for operating expenses including travel for data collection or dissemination. Funds may not be used to purchase equipment or to offset or supplement the designee’s salary. ACPA funding cannot be used to cover F&A/Indirect costs. 

  4. An explanation of how the proposed research project, within the context of the applicant’s overall research agenda, advances ACPA’s mission, vision, and values (

  5. A commitment to present research findings at a minimum of one ACPA convention during the designee’s two-year term (that is, 2020 Emerging Scholar-Designees must present at either the 2021 or the 2022 convention as part of the sponsored Emerging Scholar research sessions).

Scholarly Leadership Commitments

The applicant must choose and complete (by the end of the designee’s two-year term) at least three of the following scholarly leadership commitments:

  1. Serve as an invited manuscript reviewer for the Journal of College Student Development (a maximum of six manuscript reviews over the two-year term). Note: This invited manuscript reviewer status does not constitute membership on the JCSD Editorial Board.

  2. Participate in an ACPA-sponsored 15-20 minute video-recorded presentation centering on their particular research expertise and its relevance to student affairs professionals. Videos will be accessible via ACPA website and/or its media networks. Depending on the circumstances, videos will vary in format (e.g., featuring one individual’s research, two individuals engaged in similar research, two individuals in research-to-practice-to-research conversations relevant to a particular research area)

  3. Co-coordinate (with a current Senior Scholar) an ACPA convention session or pre-convention session designed to mentor and coach aspiring practitioner-scholars interested in contributing to scholarship and practice.

  4. Co-coordinate (with a current Senior Scholar) an ACPA convention session or pre-convention session for student affairs professionals who wish to teach in graduate degree programs and current adjuncts who seek information, potential sources, and strategies to improve their teaching effectiveness.

  5. Serve as designated Scholar-in-Residence (minimum one-year term) for an ACPA Commission, Coalition, or other formally constituted group.

  6. Other (to be proposed by the candidate). As one of their three Scholarly Leadership Commitments, applicants for ACPA Emerging Scholar-Designee may propose a project or task that will advance ACPA’s mission, vision, values, or strategic imperative and is consistent with the applicant’s scholarly agenda. Applicants should describe the proposed commitment in sufficient detail to foster understanding of its content and scope during the ACPA Emerging Scholar-Designee review and selection processes.

As the ACPA Emerging Scholars program evolves, additional scholarly leadership opportunities will be cultivated, and some ad hoc opportunities may arise. Examples may include: authoring or co-authoring a Senior Scholar-commissioned white paper/policy paper on a contemporary issue of concern to student affairs professionals or authoring or co-authoring a chapter or section of an edited Senior Scholars publication.