Heyman Center Public Humanities Fellowship

2017-18 Public Humanities Fellowship 

2017-2018 Heyman Center Public Humanities Fellowship, in Partnership with Humanities New York

The Heyman Center for the Humanities at Columbia University and Humanities New York (formerly, the New York Council for the Humanities) announce a call for applications for the 2017-2018 Heyman Center Public Humanities Fellowship.  Please note that only current Columbia graduate students and recent doctoral recipients (PhD awarded after January 2016) are eligible to apply.

The Heyman Center Public Humanities Fellowship was developed by Humanities New York in partnership with the Heyman Center for the Humanities to bring humanities scholarship into the public realm, encourage emerging humanities scholars to conceive of their work in relation to the public sphere, develop scholars’ skills for doing public work, and strengthen the public humanities community in New York State. The yearlong fellowship provides training in the methods and approaches of public scholarship and supports Fellows’ efforts to explore the public dimensions of their own scholarship in partnership with a community organization.

The skills and experiences afforded by the Fellowship are intended to serve scholars who have a record of working with the public as well as those who are just beginning work in public humanities. It is equally valuable for scholars who plan to pursue tenure-track careers within the academy and those who plan to pursue alternative career paths. 

Two Heyman Center Public Humanities Fellows will join the 2017-18 cohort of Fellows from these other New York universities: The City University of New York Graduate Center, Cornell University, New York University, the State University of New York at Buffalo, the State University of New York at Stony Brook, the State University of New York at Binghamton, the University of Rochester, and Syracuse University.


Fellows are required to attend a two-day orientation and facilitation training run by Humanities New York at their New York City office on Monday, August 21 and Tuesday, August 22, 2017.
During the Fellowship year, Fellows will develop a plan to implement their projects and identify community partners, if they have not already done so.
Fellows will participate in workshops scheduled for December 2017 and June 2018. 
Fellows will present the outcomes of their research and public work to the Heyman Center community and will submit a final report to Humanities New York.
As part of the Heyman Center community, Public Humanities Fellows are required to attend the Thursday Lecture Series of the Society of Fellows in the Humanities, (12:15-1:45), which run for most of the academic year.

During the course of the Fellowship, Fellows will have the opportunity to participate in programs, workshops, conferences, and advocacy events sponsored by Humanities New York. Fellows are also eligible for project funds from HNY to support public programs developed during the course of their fellowship. Throughout the Fellowship, Fellows are encouraged to work collaboratively with HNY to identify community partners, explore possible methods and program formats, and share findings as their research progresses. 

ELIGIBILITY: Applicants must be residents of New York State and enrolled Columbia University graduate students or recent doctoral recipients in a humanities discipline, broadly defined. Applicants need not have performed publicly engaged scholarship before but will have the opportunity to explain previous experience in the application materials.

DURATION & STIPEND: Duration of the Fellowship is August 2017 to June 2018, including mandatory attendance at a two-day orientation on August 21-22, 2017 in New York City and subsequent workshops. The Fellowship stipend is $8,000, plus a $500 travel and research stipend. The Fellowship is supported by grants from the Mrs. Giles Whiting Foundation and The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

TO APPLY: Interested applicants should submit an online application, including a resume/CV and two references, by Monday, February 20, 2017The link to the application is here: Public Humanities Fellowship Application.

Applicants will be notified of final decisions by Friday, April 14, 2017.

CONTACT: Humanities New York Program Officer Adam Capitanio (212-233-1131 / [email protected])


The 2016-2017 Heyman Center Public Humanities Fellows are:;

​Natacha Nsabimana  will engage young women at the Rose M Singer Center for Women on Rikers Island to produce a literary journal discussing social justice issues such as racism, slavery, incarceration and sexual violence through the prism of art.




Sahar Ullah will curate an interactive public arts project that includes the works of Muslim storytellers, poets, and visual artists with a special attention to North American minorities and immigrants with roots from regions largely portrayed as conflict zones in U.S. media outlets. Sahar is the recipient of the 2017 Presidential Teaching Award for Graduate Student Instructors! Three graduate student instructor (teaching assistant) recipients are recognized each year during the Graduate School of Arts & Sciences Convocation ceremony in May. Winners receive a certificate signed by President Bollinger, a formal citation written by their department, and an honorarium of $8,000. Additionally, the winners may also be recognized in University-wide and departmental publications.





The 2015-16 Heyman Center Public Humanities Fellows are:

Liane Carlson, who will create a philosophy curriculum for GED students.

Nicole Gervasio (Columbia University, English & Comparative Literature), who will bring together high school students from diverse backgrounds for reading and writing workshops aimed at bridging divides between them.

For the full list of new Public Humanities Fellows please visit the New York Council for the Humanities Website.

For more information on the Public Humanities Fellowship, including applicant information, please contact New York Council for the Humanities Program Officer, Adam Capitanio, at [email protected].

Public Humanities Initiative

Upcoming PHI Events

PHI Mailing List