The Sanville Institute Scholarship Program

Thank you for your interest in The Sanville Institute’s Scholarship Program. The application period for the 2024-25 academic year is now open and applications will be accepted until January 31, 2024. Four scholarships of $15,000 each will be awarded.

The Sanville Institute operated a doctoral program in clinical social work in California from 1974 until 2018. When it discontinued its doctoral education program, the Board of Trustees began to consider alternate uses for their remaining funds (which are primarily derived from the estate of Jean Sanville, for whom the Institute is named). It was obviously of importance that any new program be consistent with the Mission of The Sanville Institute and with the priorities of our founder, Jean Sanville.

The Board decided to initiate a scholarship program for students at the doctoral level of mental health professional training, with the intention of relieving some of the financial burden of pursuing an advanced degree. Further, the Board is particularly desirous of encouraging clinical competence in a culturally and racially diverse population of clinicians.

  • Applicants must be enrolled and in the dissertation phase in an approved or accredited educational program that offers a doctoral level clinical degree (e.g. social work, marriage and family therapy, counseling, psychology, psychiatric-mental health nursing).
  • An applicant’s research topic fits within the Mission and Vision of The Sanville Institute and has clinical and socio-cultural relevance.
  • Applicants are not related to any trustee of The Sanville Institute
  • In your application we would like you to demonstrate your commitment to the provision of mental health treatment and social justice while highlighting your research, qualifications and potential impact in the field.
  • Before beginning the application process, applicants will please review The Sanville Institute’s website, specifically its Mission, Vision and DEI statements.
  • Complete applications are due by January 31, 2024.
  • Final selection of scholarship recipients will be made in May 2024. Recipients and those whose applications were not selected will all be notified.
  • Scholarship funds will be distributed mid August 2024 for the academic year 2024-25.
  • Recipients may apply for a renewal for a second year if by then their research proposal has been approved by their dissertation chair and committee.

For your application to be considered, it must include each item listed below. More detail on each is provided in the application submission process. 

  • Cover Sheet
  • Contact Information for Two References
  • Current CV or Resume
  • Letter from Dissertation Committee Chairperson
  • Description of Research Project
  • Personal Statement
  • Each complete application will be reviewed and rated by three independent reviewers in February and March 2024. All reviewers have experience in doctoral level clinical education.
  • Applications receiving the highest ratings will be considered finalists.
  • For all finalists, letters of recommendation will be requested from the two references listed on the original application.
  • Finalists’ applications and letters of recommendation will be referred to The Sanville Institute Board of Trustees who will select the four scholarship recipients.
  • First and foremost, The Sanville Institute expects scholarship recipients to make significant progress towards completing their research and dissertation, which will contribute to socio-culturally informed understanding and practice in the field of mental health.
  • We will ask recipients to provide informal progress reports during the academic year 2024-25. Details about such reports will be provided when awards are made.
  • We will also ask for a summary of the progress recipients made towards their research study at the end of the academic year, with permission for the summary to be posted on The Sanville Institute website.
  • We will invite and encourage recipients to present their completed research study (or their work-in-progress if they have not completed the study within three years from the scholarship year) in a continuing education program sponsored by The Sanville Institute on Zoom.

Please direct questions about the scholarship program or the application process to

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