Henderson Lectureship

The Henderson Lecture was founded by Dr. Joseph R. Henderson and his wife, Elizabeth, to encourage and recognize original and continuing research and scholarship among Westminster College faculty, and to afford the opportunity for faculty to share their learning with the academic community. Dr. Henderson is a Professor Emeritus of Education at Westminster, having served as Chair of the Department of Education and as Director of the Graduate Program. Each year Westminster faculty members may nominate themselves or others to receive the lectureship, which includes a stipend to support a specific research project. A special faculty committee chooses from the nominees. 


  • To encourage and recognize original and continuing research and scholarship among Westminster College faculty
  • To afford the opportunity for faculty to share their learning with the academic community

Award:  Honoree will receive a $1,000.00 stipend funded by the Joseph R. and Elizabeth E. Henderson Faculty Lectureship Endowment. The first installment of $500.00 will be given at the time of selection to cover research expenses, and $500.00 will be provided as an honorarium at the time of the lecture presentation to the academic community. The amount of award may be increased as the corpus of the fund increases.

Selection Committee:  The Selection Committee shall consist of three members:  The Vice-Chair of the Faculty, who shall be the Convener and Chair; the Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean of the College (or his/her designee); and the Chair of the Faculty Development Committee. If one of these is a nominee for the award, the Dean of the College will choose a replacement from the appropriate group.


  • A call for nominees will be issued in the Fall Semester.
  • A deadline for proposals will be established, which will permit selection of the awardee not later than mid-term break of the Spring Semester.
  • The awardee will deliver a lecture to the academic community before the end of the Spring Semester the year following selection.

Guidelines for Nominators:

  • Nominations should be made in writing to the Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean of the College.
  • Nominees must be continuing members of the Westminster College faculty for at least three years prior to nomination.
  • Nominations do not carry over from one year to the next, so a nominee who is not selected in a given year must be re-nominated for reconsideration.
  • Any member of the Westminster College community can make a nomination, and self-nomination is acceptable.
  • Recipient of the lectureship may not be re-nominated for five years.

Guidelines for Nominees in Preparing Proposals for the Lectureship:

  • Nominees must submit a detailed proposal of new or continuing research and scholarship activity.
  • A proposal may be in any field; it may represent a long-standing or new interest; and it may comprise an independent project or part of an ongoing research program.  Evaluation will not be based on funding from other sources or on relevance to one’s teaching assignments, undergraduate education, or a liberal arts education. 
  • The proposal should include a statement of how the proposed research fits into the nominee’s scholarship interest.
  • The results of the project should be communicable to a general academic audience.
  • The proposal should present a well-documented outline including the purpose of the research, the design or data-gathering strategy, the way the data will be gathered or the research conducted, and the type of product the project will yield.
  • The proposal should be no more than five typewritten, double-spaced pages, excluding bibliography or other supporting materials, but should be specific.
  • The proposal should indicate, if it is part of an ongoing research program, the specific outcome expected at the end of the award period.
  • Faculty members who wish to be considered for a joint or collaborative project may co-author a proposal for a single award.
  • No budget statement need be included with the proposal and there is no post hoc accounting for funds.  
  • The proposal must be submitted to the Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean of the College by the designated deadline. 
  • Evaluation will include an emphasis on freshness, imaginativeness, and originality of the topic and/or approach.

Guidelines for the Committee:  The Committee’s decision should be based on the proposal and, if necessary, a personal interview.

Guidelines for the Lecture:  The lecture should be a polished presentation, understandable to a broad academic audience, of approximately one hour’s length.  The purpose of the lecture is to convey to the Westminster College community the findings-conclusions-interpretations-production, which resulted from the funded project.

Duties of the Convener (in conjunction with the Assistant to the Dean):

  • Prepare the call for nominations, including purposes and guidelines for nominators, and circulate it to the faculty in an appropriate manner.
  • Convene the Committee.
  • Set a date for the nominations to close.
  • Notify nominees of their nomination and invite proposals, inform them of the submission deadline and provide each with a copy of the Guidelines for Nominees.
  • One week before the due date provide a reminder for any nominee whose proposal has not yet been submitted.
  • Notify the President of the winner and include a copy of the proposal.
  • Notify those nominees not selected (after receipt of the President’s letter to the winner).

Duties of the President or his/her Designated Agent:

  • Notify the winner; send copies to members of the selection committee and to the Dean of the College.
  • Chair the lecture and make the formal introduction of the speaker. 

Duties of the Assistant to the Dean:

1. Contact winner to set date and site for Fall Semester (usually the first Wednesday in October).
2. Reserve the presentation site.
3. Send copies of the proposal to McGill Library, and to the Hendersons with an announcement.
4. Arrange for publicity.  (Send copy of proposal to Communication Services.)
5. In September, make arrangements for the dinner, lecture, and reception.  (Includes audiovisual needs, program, invitations, food, posters, etc.)
Note:  This award is not submitted to the FDO, nor is it reviewed by the FDC.  However, the FDO may consult on nominations if asked to do so.