The James Patrick Devlin Award

Established in 2011, this award commemorates one of Core’s original faculty in the program, James Patrick Devlin. Awards are given to second-semester Core students who have done outstanding work in their first-year Core courses and who plan to continue onto one or both of the Core second-year course sequences. It was always Prof. Devlin’s strong belief that it is in the curriculum of the second year that students experience the full benefit of the Core.

The award consists of the purchase of all books for one sophomore Core class each semester, as well as a stipend of $250. Two students will be presented with an award each year.

The application deadline for Spring 2020 is 5 PM on April 13. Steps for students who wish to be considered for the award:

  • Ask one of your Core instructors to email the committee a paragraph recommending you for the award.
  • Select your best paper written for a first-year Core class (CC 101, 102, or 112) up to the due date. Add a cover page with your name, email, and a phone number where you can be reached. Please also state which Core classes you will be continuing on to in Fall 2020. Finally, include the name of the professor who will be writing a short recommendation for you for the Devlin Award.
  • Email your paper to

A committee of Core professors will review the submissions and select at least two winners who will be notified in the early summer. If there are more than two outstanding applicants, additional awards may be considered. Winners will be announced at the end of the Spring 2020 semester.

Any student with questions about the award or application process can contact Kyna Hamill, Director of the Core Curriculum at

Click here to see a list of winners of the Devlin Award

About Prof. Devlin

James DevlinDr. James Patrick Devlin (1943-2010) was a philosopher, a programmer, and a teacher through and through. It was his way to examine all of life and then to examine it more, sometimes with hilarity and always with originality, honesty and thoughtfulness. He inspired those who came into contact with him to do the same.

Prof. Devlin pushed the pedagogical envelope, and is remembered by students and colleagues—most fondly, with deep admiration, and even awe—as an outstanding teacher and a brilliant lecturer in the Core Humanities.