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Mike Bender Internship Award

It is our pleasure to present you with the Mike Bender Internship Award. Mike Bender was born in New Jersey in 1909, and soon moved to New York City where he lived until his all too-early death in 1975. Like many children of poor immigrant parents, he started work at an early age to help support himself and his family. From boyhood when he was selling newspapers on the New York City trains until the time of his retiring from his small furniture store, he was a working man nearly every day of his life.

Whoever knew him, knew his great respect for knowledge, his wide range of interests, and his great curiosity about the world. So it seemed appropriate to his family that this award is given in his name to someone pursuing the formal education that he himself was unable to complete.

The family of Morris Bender has established a memorial endowment to the Gallatin School of Individualized Study of New York University known as The Mike Bender Award. This award is available to both undergraduate and graduate students.


The Mike Bender Award will be given to a student(s) in the Gallatin School whose internship work will exemplify and promote the ideals of compassion, understanding, and tolerance among people, thereby creating a better and kinder human society. Only Gallatin students who are working in unpaid internships are eligible to apply for the Mike Bender Award. The internships may be in the fields of the humanities, arts, or sciences.


Grants may be used in the fall and spring semesters.

Application Requirements

The selection for this award will be made from a proposal submitted by the candidates. The proposal should be 2-3 pages long and include the following information:

  • Background information about the student, including general and academic /educational goals and interests
  • A description of the internship plans including the placement involved, the people, the goals, and how the project will be evaluated
  • A discussion about how the internship plans fit in with his/her goals; and how the internship plans and goals are consistent with the criteria for this award