Robert T. Anderson Award honors a former Professor and Chair of the Department of Religious Studies. The award recognizes the Religious Studies undergraduate primary major senior who achieved the highest grade point average.   

Julia Johnson Award in Religion and Ecology, which was first presented in 2017 and was created by alumna Julia Johnson, who graduated from MSU in 2015 with a B.A. in Religious Studies. The award is intended to encourage students who have demonstrated the capacity to achieve educational and professional goals in the field of ecology, the motivation to achieve these goals, and the initiative to seek opportunities to further their progress as well as the progress of the earth and its inhabitants. Awards will be given to students whose focus of study is at the intersection of religion and ecology, with preference given to Religious Studies majors and minors.  

Recipients are selected by a committee from the Department of Religious Studies.  

Nick Rashford and Jake Foglio All-University Award for Excellence   
The All-University Awards for Excellence were created to acknowledge the accomplishments of exceptional students. The Nick Rashford and Jake Foglio Award is intended to enhance the academic credentials of deserving students who may eventually seek admission to graduate education. Recipients are selected by a committee from the Department of Religious Studies.  

Engaged Scholar Award recognizes the Religious Studies undergraduate major who best represents the ideal of the engaged scholar and whose aspirations are to serve the wider community. Recipients are selected by a committee from the Department of Religious Studies.  

Theta Alpha Kappa Undergraduate Achievement Award
This $100 award is funded by the national Religious Studies honors Society, Theta Alpha Kappa (TAK) office every other year and is granted to a student selected by the local chapter representative. Selection criteria might focus on overall academic excellence, chapter leadership, outstanding public service, or (in the case of a sophomore or early junior inductee) as an encouragement award toward continued excellence.

Bob Pettapiece Religion & Criminal Justice Award
    •    For an undergraduate student who has interest in both religious studies and criminal justice studies.


Bob Pettapiece Endowed Scholarship in Religious Studies
Dr. Bob Pettapiece attended MSU from 1959-1967 majoring in Humanities and then in Religion.  He also received a teaching certificate in History and Mathematics and started to teach in Detroit in the fall of 1967.  Later, he became certified to teach religion due to the notification of Robert Anderson, his mentor at MSU in the former Religious Studies Program.  While he did not formally teach religion, he did include the topic in many of his lessons in social studies.  He also appreciated the thoughtful kindness of Robert Anderson and other members of the Religious Studies Department, past and present, as well as the life lessons they provided.

Preference for:  

  • Undergraduate students pursuing a major in Religious Studies
  • Students who demonstrate low to moderate financial need
  • Residents of Detroit, MI

Students who are pursuing a graduate degree or a minor in Religious Studies may be considered.  Preference is for majors.