The CSPE Fellowship program recruits incoming freshmen and rising sophomores and guides them, through coursework and co-curricular opportunities, as they develop an understanding and begin the application of ideas in the classical liberal tradition. By studying political economy, students will build on rich traditions in economics, philosophy, and politics to analyze how individuals coordinate and govern themselves. The Fellowship program is a companion to the CSPE Senior Fellowship, which may involve internships and independent research.

Benefits of Becoming a CSPE Fellow

  • A $2,000 ($500 a semester) stipend to be paid out over freshman and sophomore years
  • Being part of an intellectual community dedicated to understanding a shared interest in political economy
  • An invitation to a pre-orientation seminar
  • Preference for CSPE reading groups
  • Additional academic advising from CSPE affiliated faculty
  • Invitations to on-campus events with CSPE guest speakers
  • Opportunities for off-campus events, seminars, and colloquia
  • Networking with CSPE Alumni as well as faculty from other colleges and affiliated organizations

The faculty, students, and speakers I encountered through CSPE programming always offered new opinions I had not yet considered and new challenges to my beliefs that made me re-consider my worldview. I’m incredibly thankful for the CSPE for providing this vital forum which allowed me to grow as student and as a man.

Samuel G. Johnson ’16, Manager of Academic Network Development for the Institute for Human Studies

Who Should Apply

Incoming freshmen and rising sophomores who have an interest in economics, philosophy, politics, and public policy are ideal candidates for the CSPE Fellowship. In addition, students with a background in debate, forensics, model government, Fed Challenge, or similar activities will find the intellectual engagement of the Fellowship particularly attractive.

Application Process and Requirements

Application Process
Application Process: The CSPE Fellowship is open to students who have been accepted to Hampden-Sydney College for full-time enrollment. The application process begins early in the Fall semester and consists of a brief application and an interview with affiliated CSPE faculty. Please contact Dr. Trey Carson if you have any questions.

Application Requirements

  1. The CSPE Fellowship Application


  2. Letter of reference from a teacher, guidance counselor, principal, etc. describing and attesting to the student's ability and commitment to intellectual growth and development

    Reference Form

  3. An on-campus interview with affiliated faculty and current CSPE Fellows
  4. Contact: Dr. Trey Carson, Associate Professor of Economics and Business

Activities and Speakers

Past Reading Groups

  • Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith
  • Pursuit of Happiness by Charles Murray
  • Libertarianism: A Primer by David Boaz
  • Problem of Political Authority by Michael Huemer

Past Guest Speakers

  • Dr. Christopher Coyne, Associate Professor of Economics at George MasonUniversity and the Associate Director of the F. A. Hayek Program at the Mercatus Center
  • Dr. Roger Koppl, Professor of Finance in the Whitman School of Managementof Syracuse University and a faculty fellow in the University's Forensic and National Security Sciences Institute
  • Dr. Michael Shermer, Founding Publisher of Skeptic Magazine, a monthly columnistfor Scientific American, and a Presidential Fellow at Chapman University
  • Jeffery Tucker, Editorial Director of the American Institute for Economic Research


Dr. Trey Carson
Associate Professor of Economics and Business | (434) 223-6375