Since 1978, more than 200 advanced graduate students from dozens of universities across North America and Europe have received dissertation fellowships from the McNeil Center. At least eight new fellows will be appointed for the 2016-2017 academic year, most with stipends of at least $21,000. Fellows receive office space in the Center's magnificent building on the University of Pennsylvania's campus and library, computer, and other privileges at the University. Limited travel funds for research are also available. While no teaching is required for most fellowships, all McNeil Center fellows are expected to be in residence in Philadelphia during the academic year and to participate regularly in the Center's program of seminars and other activities.
Awards may be made in the following categories, depending on the qualifications of the applicants and the availability of funding. In a given year, appointments may not be made in all categories.
Nine-Month or One-Semester Fellowships
- MCEAS Barra Dissertation Fellowships are open to candidates from any discipline working on topic within the McNeil Center's area of interest.
- Barra Foundation Fellowship
The Barra Foundation Fellowship supports research related to art or material culture.
- Friends of the MCEAS Fellowships
Friends of the MCEAS Fellowships support research dealing with Philadelphia or the Mid-Atlantic region.
- MCEAS Consortium Fellowships are reserved for candidates from research universities that are members of the McNeil Center Consortium. (For more information about the Consortium, please visit www.mceas.org.)
- The Richard S. Dunn Fellowship, acknowledges excellence in Early American Studies.
- The E. Rhodes and Leona B. Carpenter Fellowship in Early American Religious Studies is open to candidates in any discipline researching any aspect of religion in North America and the Atlantic world before 1850.
- Marguerite Bartlett Hamer Fellowships are awarded to advanced doctoral candidates from any relevant program at the University of Pennsylvania who meet the same rigorous standards as external candidates. Terms of appointment are determined by the School of Arts and Sciences.
- The Monticello-McNeil Fellowship, co-sponsored by the McNeil Center and the Robert H. Smith International Center for Jefferson Studies at Monticello, facilitates scholarship on Thomas Jefferson and his times. Holders of this fellowship spend a portion of their fellowship term at the ICJS in Charlottesville, Virginia.
How to Apply
A single online application suffices (paper copies will not be accepted) for all dissertation fellowships. Categories and duration of awards are determined by the selection committee, but candidates interested in the Monticello-McNeil fellowship should state their interest clearly in their research proposals. The following will be completed by submitting your application online:
- A curriculum vitae
- A proposal not to exceed 1,500 words, double-spaced, describing the general scope of the project and the specific work proposed for the fellowship term
- An unpublished writing sample related to the project, not to exceed 7,500 words, double-spaced.
- Two letters of recommendation should be uploaded by your recommenders or they can email recommendations to firstname.lastname@example.org Please ask recommenders to address the specifics of this application. Do not send generic letters from placement dossiers.
Fellowship applications and letters of recommendation can be uploaded by following the links on the fellowship page:
Questions can be directed to:
The McNeil Center for Early American Studies
University of Pennsylvania
3355 Woodland Walk
Philadelphia, PA 19104-4531
The deadline for online applications is 1 February 2016.