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Indiana University Bloomington
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Undergraduate Funding Opportunities

Henry A. Bern Memorial Essay Competition

PRIZES: $250 each in up to four categories

  • History/Holocaust
  • Text/Philosophy/Literature
  • Arts/Culture/Politics
  • Fiction/Multi-Media

Deadline: Friday, May 20, 2016

Purpose: To stimulate and encourage undergraduate excellence in the field of Jewish Studies through meaningful scholarly projects.

Eligibility:Any current Indiana University Bloomington undergraduate student, including those who graduate in December 2015 and May 2016.


  1. Research papers, essays, and creative writing have been submitted in past years’ competitions.

  2. An author may submit a maximum of 2 entries, including one written with multiple authors.

  3. Entries may be written in English, Modern Hebrew, or Yiddish.

  4. Entries may have been previously submitted for IU course credit.

  5. Written entries must be typed and double-spaced, with footnotes wherever applicable.  They should not exceed 25 pages, and must be submitted in Word.

  6. Multimedia entries must be submitted as a URL link to a hosted website.           

  7. Student name(s) must only appear on a separate “cover” sheet which should also include the student ID number(s), local and permanent home addresses, IU e-mail address, telephone number, and paper/project titleStudent name(s) should NOT appear in the file name or URL/host site. This information is to appear only on the cover sheet in order to maintain anonymity.  Submissions will be numbered for judging purposes.    

  8. The paper/project title should also appear at the start of each entry.                                            

  9. Among the criteria considered significant will be clarity, focus and development of the subject or problem, quality of evidence, use of sources, craftsmanship, and originality.

Deadline: Submissions should be e-mailed in Word to before midnight on Friday, May 20, 2016.  (We accept submissions any time during the 2015-2016 academic year.)  Please include in subject line: “Bern Essay Submission” AND the prize category in which you want your submission considered (see above).

Authors of the winning submissions will be acknowledged at the Jewish Studies Fall Dessert in 2016.

This scholarship was established to honor the memory of Henry A. Bern by his family and friends.  Henry Bern was a professor of Education at Indiana University where he was committed to teaching and the world of learning.

If you have questions, call 855-0453 or email


2016 “What is a Middle Eastern Feminist Movement: Feminist Movements in Lebanon and Israel” - Alex Perkins (History category)

2016 “Shas: A Model for Resolving Israel’s Internal Rift” – Jeffrey Lewis (Arts/Culture/Politics category)

2016 “’Jewish’ DNA: The Influence of New Technology Reflecting Race Ideology” – Leah Grynheim (Fiction/Multi-Media category)

2016 “Invalidated Absolutes and Reality of Man” – Rose Guingrich (Text/Philosophy/Literature category)

2015 "Gay or Nay,Modern Readings of the David and Jonathan Narrative" - Franklyn Salzmann

2014 "Stepping on Burning Lava: Irène Némirovsky, French Bourgeois or Jew?" - Natalie Harris

2014 "Intimacy and Power: A Dusty Conception of Personhood in Genesis 2:7a" - David Benjamin Bloomington