About the Seminar

The Center for the Humanities is pleased to announce the third iteration of the Seminar on Public Engagement and Collaborative Research: 2020-2022, generously funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. This Seminar will support senior and community college faculty across CUNY campuses, as well as student fellows pursuing doctoral degrees at the Graduate Center, in the creation and production of new and innovative public humanities projects and pedagogy in collaboration with community partners across New York City.

The goal of the Seminar is to give faculty and students opportunities to extend their research and creative interests outside of the university. In collaboration with diverse publics, research teams develop creative and scholarly projects that address urgent social issues. Funding and logistical support provided by the Seminar allows participants to partner with cultural and civic organizations (such as non-profit organizations, literary presses, activist collectives, libraries, hospitals, museums, and performance spaces) to develop innovative humanistic work. In the past, this work has taken the form of websites, open source publications, theatrical productions, artworks and exhibitions, interactive virtual reality experiences, summits and conferences, oral history and storytelling workshops, research sprints, podcasts, and more. These serve as just a few examples of possible directions projects can take. Click to read about the guiding questions and values of the seminar.

Seminar participants not only model frameworks for public humanities at CUNY and diversify ideas of professional, intellectual, and creative development, they redefine the role of engaged scholarship and collaboratively produced knowledge in public life.

Information Session (taking place in Room 8304 at the Graduate Center, CUNY); click to RSVP:


The Seminar will support various forms of intellectual and cultural production exploring research related to three open-ended themes. These themes are meant to serve as springboards rather than prescriptions: themes, methods, and outcomes will ultimately be designed collaboratively by participants:


Applications will open May 8th, 2019; Click here to apply and more info for the Faculty Coleader Application; and Click here to apply and more info for GC Doctoral Student Fellowships for Teaching, Digital Publics, and Provost's Public Humanities. Please check back on our website or follow our mailing list for announcements. All faculty and student fellows selected will receive training in public humanities methodologies during their first semester and financial and logistical support throughout the timeline of the project (see below for a detailed timeline). The project will support the following roles:


FALL 2019:

Information sessions (taking place in Room 9205 at the Graduate Center, CUNY): Tuesday, September 10th, 4:15-6:15pm

Tuesday, October 1st (Student Fellowship Focus),11:45am-1:45pm

September 30th: Faculty coleader applications due

October 15th: Teaching Fellow/Digital Publics Fellow/Provost’s Fellow applications due

November 4th: Faculty notifications sent out to applicants.

December 2nd: GC student fellowship notifications sent out to applicants.

SPRING 2020: project officially launches; research and project design, professional development, and public humanities training intensives for participants

FALL 2020–SPRING 2022: community engagement, public pedagogy, workshops and practicums, and development of capstone projects

SPRING 2021–SPRING 2022: reflection, analysis, and documentation of ongoing projects, resulting in digital, new media, and print interfaces that model and analyze public scholarship for a wide readership.

To learn more about past Seminar projects, click here.

Questions about this initiative can be sent to The Center for the Humanities at [email protected]

Information Session Video