About the application


Center for the Humanities’ Digital Publics Fellows

The Center for the Humanities seeks 2 CUNY Graduate Center doctoral students (entering 2nd, 3rd, 4th, or 5th year in fall 2017) in the humanities or the humanities related social-sciences to participate in the Seminar Public Engagement and Collaborative Research.


This highly competitive digital fellowship offers a stipend and graduate assistantship (totaling $27,000). The graduate assistant appointment will provide in-state tuition remission to students within their first 10 registered semesters of doctoral study at the CUNY Graduate Center. This digital fellowship is for one year with an option to renew for a second; it will require a 15 hour per week commitment.

Digital fellows will be expected to participate in weekly seminar meetings in spring 2017. The official fellowship begins in fall 2017. Digital Fellows will have a desk at the Center for the Humanities where they will work one day a week to build and implement digital platforms for public engagement as well as their own digital projects related to seminar research themes. This position is collaborative and regular meetings set by research teams are mandatory for the duration of the seminar period.


What is the Seminar on Public Engagement and Collaborative Research?

The Seminar on Public Engagement and Collaborative Research is a two-year public humanities initiative generously funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. The seminar, which will run from spring 2017-spring 2019, builds on The Center for the Humanities’ successful pilot to promote the diverse ways the humanities function in public life as a public good. Bringing together a network of at least 38 faculty, students, and–uniquely–civic, cultural, and community partners, the seminar produces and circulates research through public projects, engaged scholarship, and interdisciplinary activities at the City University of New York and in New York City itself.

For more information about the kinds of projects produced by the pilot program, view here.

In order to activate a range of academic disciplines, the seminar is organized into four distinct research teams. The overall seminar and its four integrated research teams provide a tiered, networked structure to promote both broad inquiry into public research methodologies as well as focused scholarship on specific critical topics that bridge the arts and humanities, the digital humanities, the humanities-related social sciences, and social justice. Each research team (of 8-10 participants) is led by 2 faculty coleaders. The general themes to be refined and finalized by selected participants are:

· public education and racial (in)justice;

· music and sound (performance, creation, and scholarship);

· archives;

· histories of global contemporary art.

What is a public humanities project?

Some examples of collaboratively produced public projects include: archival research, intervention, and presentation; artworks; exhibitions; films; choreographic works and performances; classroom initiatives; translations; co-authored articles; public syllabi; workshops and classes; interpretive websites and interactive digital platforms; theatrical productions; books and publications; and community actions. In short, public projects are seated in serious scholarly research and connect communities working both inside and outside the university setting. For more information, view here.


- Doctoral student in the humanities or humanities-related social sciences with a focus on digital humanities at the Graduate Center, CUNY;

- Entering years 2-5 of study in fall 2017;

- Web development, interactive and interpretative design, and social media experience;

- Proficiency in developing through to completion digital humanities projects;

- Open to students with and without Graduate Center fellowship packages.

Fellowship Structure

Semester 1 (spring 2017):
Digital fellows will participate in weekly meetings and occasional professional development workshops as part of the Seminar on Public Engagement and Collaborative Research. This R&D period will help feed into ongoing digital and public projects.

Semester 2-4 (fall 2017, spring 2018, fall 2019):
Digital fellows will help plan and promote collaborative public humanities projects in collaboration with faculty coleaders, community partners, and other students – building relationships across CUNY and the city. Fellows will work one day each week in the Center for the Humanities to build and implement complementary digital components of the seminar, actively disseminating information about ongoing projects and creating collaborative digital spaces that promote ongoing activities.

Semester 5 (spring 2019): Fellows will present and conceptualize the work of the seminar in digital space. Select professional development and public and student engagement opportunities will continue.


- Be making satisfactory progress towards their degree;

- Attend monthly seminar meetings and occasional professional development workshops at the GC;

- Write regular monthly public reflections (approx. 500 words) about their experiences to be shared via the Center for the Humanities blog;

- Demonstrated knowledge of digital interfaces;

- Participate, plan, and promote public events generated by the seminar.


Please send a letter of interest, a one-page proposal, and a CV to Kendra Sullivan at [email protected]. Details on what to include are below:

Your letter of interest should address the following:

+ What past experience do you have developing digital humanities platforms?
+ What is your relationship to the public humanities?
+ What is the focus of your own scholarship?

Your proposal should answer the following questions:

+ Identify which research team you are applying to. (Identify one.)
Keep in mind that these areas are elastic frameworks, and your research might address any number of critical topics within these general themes through public scholarship. They are:

public education and racial (in)justice;
music and sound (performance, creation, and scholarship);
histories of global art.

+ What is your individual project and how does it related to one of the four research themes you specified?
+ How do you envision employing your skills to amplify the work of the seminar?
+ What are some primary goals and outcomes you hope to achieve?

Keep in mind that initial plans will evolve in dialogue with other participants.

Applications will be judged by a selections committee on: Scholarship; Creativity, Feasibility, Necessity, and Engagement.


Due to the overwhelming response, this deadline has been extended to November 18, 2016.