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Valerie B. Edmonds Student Research Award

by Jeremy M. Brown last modified Feb 13, 2017 01:14 PM

We are reviewing and revising the Edmonds Award process this year and will be announcing the revised process in fall  2017.

2015 Recipient

Jeremy Reardon. Winner
"'A Kind of Terror and Despair': Problems in Civil War Medicine,"                      
HIS 495 (Research Seminar in History), with Dr. J. Tom Scott as faculty support                                                  

Deanna Smith. Runner-up
"Racial Perceptions Promoted in Legislation, Media, and Marketing After the Civil War,"
HIS 495 (Research Seminar in History), with Dr. J. Tom Scott as faculty support


Pictured: Deanna Smith (Runner-up) and Jeremy Reardon (Winner)


Previous Winners



Valerie Edmonds

As Mercer University creates a supportive learning environment where inquiry is the norm, problem solving is the focus, and critical thinking and conversation are integral parts of the process, the Jack Tarver Library is pleased to announce the Valerie B. Edmonds Student Research Award.

This award recognizes excellence in undergraduate research projects that incorporate the use of University Libraries' collections and services and demonstrate exceptional information literacy skills on the part of the undergraduate researcher. The intent of the Valerie B. Edmonds Student Research Award is to celebrate student engagement in original research in all academic disciplines and to promote extensive and meaningful use of library resources and services.

The award honors long-time librarian and student mentor, Valerie B. Edmonds, whose tireless service to students and faculty over a thirty-year career exemplified passion and commitment to scholarship and research.



  • Individuals must be currently enrolled as undergraduate students at Mercer University (Macon campus) or the Macon Regional Academic Center. Students who completed degree requirements in December 2015 are also eligible. All class levels and disciplines are eligible.
  • All submitted projects must contain an element of library research. The use of primary and/or secondary sources must be demonstrated.
  • Individual or team submissions are allowed.
  • Each participating student or team may submit one project only.
  • Applicants must express their consent to have winning papers/projects exhibited at Tarver Library and included in the university archives. Photographs of the winners may be displayed on the Tarver Library website. All application materials remain the property of the library.
  • Research must have been conducted while a student at Mercer University and using University Libraries' resources and services.


Evaluation Committee & Criteria

Each Valerie B. Edmonds Student Research Award application will be carefully reviewed by a panel consisting of designated Mercer University faculty, staff, and students.

Submissions will be judged on the following criteria:

  • Demonstrated ability to select, evaluate, and synthesize appropriate library resources and successfully use them in the creation of a research project or paper;
  • Evidence of significant scholastic and/or personal learning and the development of a steady research pattern or habits that can be utilized in future academic endeavors;
  • Ability to describe and analyze the applicant's research strategies, techniques, and learning process in a well-written introductory essay.

Expectations for achievement will be commensurate with the applicant’s class year and the requirements of the discipline.


Award Notification & Promotion

The 2015/2016 Annual Valerie B. Edmonds Student Research Award winner and runner-up will be notified no later than March 18, and formally announced at the Honors Convocation on April 8. The winner will receive a $250 monetary prize and a commemorative plaque, and the runner-up will receive a $100 monetary prize and a certificate. Team awards will be divided equally among all members.


Application Procedure & Deadline

Applications submitted by 5 p.m. February 2, 2016, will be given full consideration. Incomplete or late submissions will not be considered. Unless requested by the applicant, submitted materials will not be returned. When possible, please submit copies in lieu of original documents or projects.

Submit application package to:

Kathryn Wright
Special Collections
Jack Tarver Library
1501 Mercer University Drive
Macon, GA 31207-0001

or email electronic submissions to .

All application packages must include the following (click link for required form):

  • Application cover sheet with student signature(s). Electronic submissions of this document are acceptable in .pdf format only.
  • A 100 word abstract/summary of the research project.
  • A 500-750 word essay describing research strategies as well as the application of library resources to the project.
  • A final version of the completed research project. Please make sure student names appear ONLY on the cover sheet and not on the project itself.
  • A bibliography or other appropriate list of sources consulted.
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