Public Humanities Graduate Fellowship

Eligibility Columbia PhD Students
Status Application Period Closed
Next Application Cycle TBD

The Society of Fellows and Heyman Center for the Humanities (SOF/Heyman) invite proposals from advanced graduate students throughout the University in support of public humanities programming.

Learn more about our recent fellows and their projects by visiting the Humanities in Practice page.



All proposed projects must be public-facing in some way: intended for public audiences, engaging members of the public as collaborators, or partnering with community groups. Projects of any format or type will be considered; however, projects that are already underway or in development and that engage with issues of social justice and equity are particularly welcome. Projects may be collaborations between two or more students; however, the application should designate one as the project director.

The SOF/Heyman will provide research allowances of $4,000 to four graduate students named as SOF/Heyman Public Humanities Fellows. Grantees/Fellows will have up to one year to expend awarded funds, which may be spent on travel, consultant fees, wages for labor, participant honoraria, marketing, venue space, project materials, and media costs, among other things.

If you have a question about what costs the grant or research allowance will cover, please contact Humanities in Practice Coordinator JM Chris Chang ([email protected]).


Applicants must be PhD students at Columbia University.


Applicants are required to submit the following:


Project Abstract

No more than 100 words.


Project Description

A narrative of the project’s history, objectives, and methods, including plans for engaging extra-mural communities and its alignment with the aims of the Humanities in Practice initiative. 500 word limit.


Brief Biographical List of Partners and Collaborators

List of project collaborators and organizational partners, with brief description of role or relationship to the project, as applicable. 250 word limit.


Project Timeline

Key dates and milestones for project outcomes, in narrative or outline form. 250 word limit.


Project Budget

A coherent plan for the proposed use of grant funds, itemized where feasible, with realistic figures for anticipated expenses.


CV of Project Director and Collaborators

CV of project director (and graduate student collaborators, if applicable).

Terms and Awards

  • Fellows attend fortnightly workshops throughout the academic year aimed at providing them with methodological skills, professional connections, and feedback for the development of their civically-engaged, public-facing projects.
  • Under the guidance of workshop leaders, Fellows develop their projects and work with academic and community-based partners to implement them.
  • Fellows take part in guiding public humanities programming at SOF/Heyman, applying their own skillsets and networks toward ongoing events and initiatives, and presenting their projects in the Building Publics capstone event.

Submission Guidelines

Applications must be submitted as a single Word or PDF document, containing all materials noted above. Label the file thus: Last Name, First Name—PH Fellowship 2022-23 (e.g., “Hamilton, Alexander—PH Fellowship 2022-23”).

All proposals are due April 22nd, 2022. Send the application file as an attachment in an email to: [email protected].

About the Humanities Centers Initiatives

The Humanities Centers Initiative is an innovative statewide partnership between Humanities New York and a network of humanities centers based at nine New York State universities. Launched in 2012 and supported by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and the Whiting Foundation, the HCI supports humanities institutes, faculty, and graduate students in their commitment to public engagement.

About the SOF/Heyman's Humanities in Practice Project

A key part of the SOF/Heyman's Public Humanities Initiative, the Humanities in Practice Projects are a space for students and faculty to imagine and develop experimental modes of engaged scholarship and pedagogy—work that spills out of disciplinary-bound methods and emerges from collective forms of knowledge production to interpret and question contemporary social and cultural concerns.