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National & International Opportunities

UIC, U of I System, and Federal Opportunities

Graduate students at UIC are eligible to apply for a number of awards provided solely for students at UIC as well as awards for students enrolled in the University of Illinois system. The following awards are not handled by the Fellowships Office in the Graduate College.

US Federal Funding Opportunities - "The Fulbrights" Heading link

The Fulbright “brand” allows US students to go abroad and for foreign students to attend UIC. (There are also Fulbrights for post-docs and scholars to move in either direction, but they are not of our concern here.)

The Fulbright Foreign Student Program enables graduate students, young professionals and artists from abroad to study and conduct research in the United States. The Fulbright Foreign Student Program operates in more than 155 countries worldwide. Approximately 4,000 foreign students receive Fulbright scholarships each year to study in the U.S.

The Fulbright Foreign Student Program is administered by binational Fulbright Commissions/Foundations or U.S. Embassies. All Foreign Student Program applications are processed by these offices.

Program eligibility and selection procedures vary widely by country. Please use the drop-down menu here to find information about the Fulbright Program in your home country, including eligibility requirements and application guidelines. If your country is not listed there, you are not eligible to apply.

The role of UIC’s Graduate College is to serve as liaison between the U.S. funding agency and the Office of Graduate Admissions, during the placement process, and then once matriculated at UIC, it services the fellowship waiver.

We await legislation resolving President Trump’s executive order that cancelled Fulbright program for Hong Kong and mainland China. This affects students coming from and and going to said region.

A new UIC student organization is being formed. It will provide networking opportunities for current Foreign Fulbright students as well as US Student Fulbrighters who are enrolled at UIC. Benn Williams will serve as staff advisor.

Fulbright fellowships, through the U.S. State Department provides for teaching, research, and study opportunities internationally for U.S. citizen students in various disciplines. Almost 200 countries are viable sites for placement. The national deadline is in October, but UIC graduate students must meet an earlier campus deadline and pass through a campus evaluation process. UIC’s campus deadline is September 8, 2022. Graduate students and alumni from UIC’s graduate programs should contact Benn Williams (bwilli7@uic.edu), their dedicated university Fulbright Program Advisor. (Undergraduates and undergraduate alumni should contact Kim Germain in the Office of External Fellowships.)

In the 2020-2021 campaign, UIC had thirteen semi-finalists of whom seven became finalists. All seven were current graduate students, graduate-level professional students, or recent alumni of our graduate programs. In the 2021-2022 campaign, UIC has ten semi-finalists of whom four are finalists and two are  alternates. Sixty percent of the semi-finalists are graduate or professional students. In the 2022-2023 competition, UIC had 19 applicants, 12 of whom were graduate students or graduate alumni. Of the 12, half reached semi-finalist status. Three graduate alumni were offered an ETA and we had two alternates as well.

Hong Kong and mainland China are not taking Fulbrighters in the 2023-24 competition.

The Fulbright Public Policy Fellowship provides opportunities for U.S. early and mid-career professionals and practitioners to serve in professional placements in a foreign government ministry or institution in partner governments around the world. Fulbright Public Policy Fellows build mutual understanding and contribute to strengthening the public sector while cultivating public policy experience in their desired area of expertise. The Fulbright Public Policy Fellowship also includes an independent research component that focuses on an issue that is beneficial for the host ministry and the Fellow.

National deadline: September 16, 2019.

Fulbright-Hays Doctoral Dissertation Research Abroad (DDRA) Fellowship Program

The Fulbright-Hays Doctoral Dissertation Research Abroad (DDRA) Fellowship Program provides opportunities for full-time dissertation research abroad in modern foreign languages and area studies. Students may request funding for a period of no fewer than six months and no more than 12 months. Funds support travel expenses to and from the residence of the fellow and the country or countries of research; maintenance and dependents(s) allowances based on the location of research for the fellow and his or her dependent(s); an allowance for research-related expenses overseas; and health and accident insurance premiums. Applicants should plan to have a teaching career in the U.S. after completion of the doctorate. A distillation of the FOA can be found below. The application process is onerous — please communicate with Benn Williams, the Fellowships and Awards Coordinator, if you plan to apply.

The campus deadline is March 19, 2021.

US Federal Funding - "Non-Fulbrights" Heading link

A number of federal agencies offer funding for graduate students to study foreign languages and/or conduct research abroad. Below is a selection.

Are you interested in a career in public service? Are you interested in spending 6-12 months overseas using a critical language while also conducting your own research and/or performing an internship? If so, the Boren Fellowship may be an excellent opportunity for you.

Boren applicants may either elect to propose their own programs or participate in a structured language study initiative in areas related to U.S. National Security (broadly defined). Language study and cultural competency are important components to graduate education. Fellowships provide up to $30,000 for domestic and overseas study/immersion (minimum 12 weeks and maximum one year overseas.) Preference is given to proposals for 6 months (or longer) in duration for linguistic and cultural immersion. In exchange for funding, Boren Fellows commit to working in the federal government for at least one year after graduation. (Usually well-remunerated positions.)

Graduate students apply through the Boren/IIE Slate portal for this fellowship in the early spring. The Fellowships and Awards Coordinator can assist with the fellowship application. (The Boren Scholarship is for undergraduates.) UIC hosts a Boren representative-led info session almost annually. Our Fall 2022 session is TBD.

Boren has a preference for students who wish to pursue a career in the federal government or in a contracting agency. The following is NOT an exclusive list of federal agencies for which Boren alumni find jobs: USAID; Corporation for National and Community Service; Departments of Agriculture, Commerce, Education, Energy, Defense, Health and Human Services (NIH, FDA), Justice, Interior, Labor, State, Treasury, Transportation, and Veteran Affairs; Congress  (including the Library of Congress).

Quick statistics from the 2021 competition (unless otherwise noted):

  • 124 of 334 applications for the Boren Fellowship were accepted for funding (a 37% success rate, down from 44%);
  • 59% of graduate students applying in 2020 to the specific language initiatives were selected for funding;
  • Most popular countries for fellows: (1) Jordan; (2) Taiwan; (3) Tanzania; (4) Brazil
  • Most popular languages for fellows: (1) Arabic; (2) Mandarin; (3) Swahili; (4) Portuguese;
  • Most common areas of study in 2020: (1) international affairs; (2) STEM; (3) public administration; (4) international development/area studies; (5) history;
  • Of 3970 alumni tracked; 1242 found their first federal job in the Department of Defense; 921 in the State Department;
  • Top six metro areas for federal employment: DC, NYC, San Francisco, Seattle, Tampa, and Austin;
  • Other top cities for federal employment: Chicago, Minneapolis, Denver, Charlottesville, and Norfolk.

Campus deadline: 11:59 p.m. on January 9, 2023. National deadline: 4 p.m. on January 25, 2023.

Sponsored by the US Department of State, the Critical Language Scholarship (CLS) Program is an intensive overseas language and cultural immersion program for American students enrolled at U.S. colleges and universities. (You must be a U.S. citizen or national at the time of your application.) The program includes intensive language instruction (>20 hours per week) and structured cultural enrichment experiences designed to promote rapid language gains. Students apply for a language — not a country. (Benn Williams is the liaison for graduate students.)

Currently, CLS funds these languages:

Why CLS?  A new section of the website communicates the impact of the CLS Program (see links below). The page has links to specific pages on language learning outcomes and alumni stories. In short, the CLS Program contributes to U.S. national security and economic prosperity.

DEADLINE: November 16, 2021 (7 pm Central).

In-person institutes in summer 2021 went online due to the global pandemic. While it is impossible to predict the future, CLS is planning to hold their summer institutes in-person.

Effective Fall 2023, this very generous award funds students at a level of $37,000 annually for up to three years (over five). A variety of disciplines are eligible to apply, so please check out the website.

Students apply at-large–they do not submit via the Graduate College, nor the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research. The Fellowships and Awards Coordinator enters the picture after the student receives the award to their studies at UIC; however, the coordinator could read essays.

Upcoming deadlines (5 pm local time):

  • October 17, 2022 – Life Sciences
  • October 18, 2022 – Computer and Information Science and Engineering, Materials Research, Psychology, Social, Behavioral and Economic Sciences, STEM Education and Learning
  • October 20, 2022 – Engineering
  • October 21, 2022 – Chemistry, Geosciences, Mathematical Sciences, Physics and Astronomy

Citizens & Scholars Fellowships

Formerly known as the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation, the Institute for Citizens & Scholars fosters future generations of informed, engaged, hopeful citizens who reflect the diversity of our democracy. Below is a selection of the fellowships available to graduate students.

Smithsonian Institution Office for Fellowships and Internships

Hundreds of graduate students and holders of doctorates come to the Smithsonian to do independent research under the guidance of a member of our world-class research staff. Fellows have the opportunity to study and work intensively with Smithsonian collections and experts in their fields and beyond. In addition, more than 1,500 students pursue internships offered across the organization.

The Smithsonian offers a world of research opportunities for graduate, pre-doctoral, or post-doctoral students, as well as for visiting professionals, students, scientists, or scholars conducting independent research. The Office of Fellowships can guide you through the process.

Internships at the Smithsonian Institution are as varied as the museums and research centers themselves. From Art History to Zoology, exhibit building to investments, Smithsonian Internships provide workplace-based learning experiences for a wide range of educational and career paths.

American Councils for International Education – Title VIII in Eastern Europe and Eurasia

Funded by the U.S. Department of State’s Program for Research and Training on Eastern Europe and the Independent States of the Former Soviet Union (Title VIII), the American Councils CRLT Program provides full support for U.S. graduate students, faculty, and independent scholars seeking to conduct in-country, independent research in Russia, Eurasia, and Eastern Europe, while increasing proficiency in languages of the region.

Applicants should indicate their proposed research location(s) in the application. Applicants to the Research Scholar Program may only apply for research in a total of two countries maximum [from this list]: Albania; Armenia; Azerbaijan; Bosnia and Herzegovina; Bulgaria; Croatia; Estonia; Georgia; Kazakhstan; Kosovo; Kyrgyzstan; Latvia; Lithuania; Moldova; Montenegro; North Macedonia; Poland; Romania; Russia; Serbia; Tajikistan; Ukraine.

Academic Fellowships in Russia (AFR)

AFR is designed to expand the accessibility of Russia-based research while increasing U.S. knowledge and expertise on Russia. Fellowships last three to nine consecutive months and include round-trip international travel; housing and living stipends; visa support; overseas health, accident, and evacuation insurance; archive access; and logistical support. Following the completion of the research term, AFR fellows will return to the U.S. and share their findings through presentations, articles, and lectures in order to strengthen and broaden current scholarship in the social sciences related to Russia and U.S.-Russia relations.

Combined Research and Language Training (CRLT) Program

Designed to expand the accessibility of overseas research while increasing U.S. knowledge and expertise on the region, the CRLT Program supports fellows who, in addition to conducting overseas, policy-relevant research, seek to increase their language proficiency through targeted language instruction. Fellowships last three to nine consecutive months and include round-trip international travel; housing and living stipends; visa support; overseas health, accident, and evacuation insurance; archive access; weekly language instruction in the host country language; and logistical support. Following the completion of the research term, fellows will return to the U.S. and share their findings through presentations, articles, and lectures in order to strengthen and broaden current scholarship on the region.

Research Scholar Program

Designed to expand the accessibility of overseas research while increasing U.S. knowledge and expertise on the region, the Research Scholar Program supports fellows seeking to complete overseas, policy-relevant research. Fellowships last three to nine consecutive months and include round-trip international travel; housing and living stipends; visa support; overseas health, accident, and evacuation insurance; archive access; and logistical support. Following the completion of the research term, fellows will return to the U.S. and share their findings through presentations, articles, and lectures in order to strengthen and broaden current scholarship on the region.”

While not the easiest sight to navigate, this outlines many of the federal options awarded to departments/programs that students can work under, along with individual grants available to students to apply at-large for consideration.

A fellowship will affect federal student loan or work-study. Typically, students with fellowships may not be permitted to borrow small amounts of federal loans due to cost of attendance regulation.  Check with the Office of Student Financial Aid on eligibility requirements.

If you have already received a refund for the current year in federal loans and you accept a fellowship, you may be responsible to return this refund to UIC.  Contact the Office of Student Financial Aid for further information.

If applying for loans and/or work-study a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) must be completed.  See the Graduate Student Guide from the Office of Student Financial Aid for more information.

Select National and International Competitions Heading link

UIC is a preferred institution for certain competitions or has multiple applicants for these prestigious opportunities.

DAAD (Deutscher Akademischer Austauschdienst - German Academic Exchange Service)

The DAAD offers numerous opportunities to study and to do research in Germany.

Opportunities for graduate students:

  • **Study Scholarships – This program is available to highly-qualified final year undergraduate students and those who have received an undergraduate degree, regardless of discipline, and who seek a full master’s degree at a German university or for study at a German university as part of a postgraduate or Master’s degree program to be completed in the home country. Campus deadline: October 19th.
  • German Studies Research Grant – This specialized for highly-qualified undergraduate and graduate students, who are nominated by their department/program chairs, may be used for short-term research (one to two months) in Germany. The program is designed to encourage research and promote the study of cultural, political, historical, economic and social aspects of modern and contemporary German affairs from an inter- and multidisciplinary perspective. Deadlines are May 1 and November 1st.
  • University Summer Course Grant – This program provides scholarships to attend a broad range of three- to four-week summer courses at German universities which focus mainly on German language and literary, cultural, political and economic aspects of modern and contemporary Germany. Extensive extracurricular programs complement and reinforce the core material.
  • RISE (Research Internship in Science and Engineering) –  Open to students in the fields of biology, chemistry, physics, earth sciences, engineering or a closely related field, the program offers research internships in Germany to master’s and PhD students from North America at companies and non-university research institutions with strong relations to industry.
  • Short-Term Research Grants – Designed for highly qualified candidates who have completed a Master’s degree or those who have already completed a PhD (postdocs), these grants fund 1-6 months of research. The application portal for PhD and postdoc students is open June 30th – November 4th.
  • **Research Grants – One-Year Grants – Designed for highly qualified candidates who have completed a Master’s degree, these grants fund 7-12 months of research. Application portal opens June 30th. Deadlines vary by discipline. See below.

**UIC graduate students may apply independently for all of the grants above EXCEPT the study scholarship and one-year research grant in non-arts fields. As a designated priority institution, UIC runs an internal competition each fall. The applicant marshals materials for evaluation and then the Graduate College coordinates a small evaluation committee to determine which nominations will be put forward to DAAD for consideration. Contact the Fellowships & Awards Coordinator for more information.

Long-term research grants (7-10 months) have the following deadline by field:

  • Architecture: September 30, 2022 – apply directly to the Bonn office
  • Music: September 29, 2022 – apply directly to the Bonn office
  • Performing Arts: November 2, 2022 – apply directly to the Bonn office
  • Fine Art, Design/Visual Communication & Film: November 30, 2022 – apply directly to the Bonn office
  • All other academic fields: October 19, 2022 (UIC campus deadline); final deadline of November 4, 2022.  Contact Benn Williams for more information (bwilli7@uic.edu) on the campus deadline.

Requirements for the campus deadline follow the links.

DAAD Requirements at Campus Deadline

Study Scholarship One-Year Research Grant
PDF version of your online application form (from the DAAD portal) PDF version of your online application form (from the DAAD portal)
CV as Word document (max. 3 pages) CV as Word document (max. 3 pages)
Study proposal (max. 3 pages): should include a narrative about academic and personal reasons for the planned study explaining why a particular program has been chosen and how it will further your educational and career goals. (Please also read our important information for scholarship applicants / Section B, Point 1.) List of publications as Word document (max. 5 pages)
Letter of admission to a study program in Germany: If this is not available at the time of the application deadline, this can be subsequently submitted before the scholarship-supported study program begins. Extensive and detailed description of the research proposal which has been discussed with the academic adviser and a description of previous research work as Word document (max. 5 pages)
"Information about your preferred master program" (download) Additional info for master’s degree applicants: • Applicants who will be starting their master’s program in Germany: when completing the form, DAAD recommends listing up to 5 potential degree programs to avoid a situation in which you are granted a scholarship but end up not getting accepted into a master’s program. However, when writing your proposal, you should focus on your first choice, and briefly mention additional programs at the end of your proposal. OR • For a study period in Germany as part of an American or Canadian postgraduate or master’s degree: submit proof that the academic credits earned in Germany will be recognized by your home institution (e.g. letter from your department). Schedule of planned research work as Word document (consider weekly and thematic/geographic subdivisions)
[Blank] Letter confirming supervision by an academic adviser in Germany, which refers to the applicant's proposal and confirms that the host institute will provide a workplace as PDF
University degree certificate(s), if applicable (e.g. Bachelor or Master): If your studies have not been completed at the time of the application deadline, the certificate must be submitted before the scholarship-supported study program. (PDF) University degree certificates, scans of university-level diplomas as or PDF or JPG
Scanned official transcripts from all (undergraduate and graduate) university studies and include the explanation of the grading system (explanation is usually on the back of the transcript) as PDF Scanned official transcripts from all (undergraduate and graduate) university studies and include the explanation of the grading system (explanation is usually on the back of the transcript) as PDF
DAAD Sprachnachweis / language evaluation form ( If you have any knowledge of German, submit this document signed by a faculty member (professors or teaching assistant) of the Department of Germanic Studies. If you have no knowledge of German and your research language in Germany will be English, be sure to submit this certificate anyway, indicating that your research language is English, and write at the top "No knowledge of German." (Please note that German is not a requirement for the Research Grant) DAAD Sprachnachweis / language evaluation form ( If you have any knowledge of German, submit this document signed by a faculty member (professors or teaching assistant) of the Department of Germanic Studies. If you have no knowledge of German and your research language in Germany will be English, be sure to submit this certificate anyway, indicating that your research language is English, and write at the top "No knowledge of German." (Please note that German is not a requirement for the Research Grant)
Please arrange for a PDF of the signed reference form from a university professor in your major subject or discipline to be emailed to Benn Williams. (bwilli7@uic.edu) Please arrange for a PDF of the signed reference form from a university professor in your major subject or discipline to be emailed to Benn Williams. (bwilli7@uic.edu)

Dolores Zohrab Liebmann Fellowship

The Dolores Zohrab Liebmann Fund was created for the purpose of funding advanced education and graduate study grants, which must be carried out entirely in the United States of America. The Dolores Zohrab Liebmann Fellowships are to be awarded only to candidates who have outstanding undergraduate records, demonstrate a need for financial assistance, are citizens of the United States of America, are enrolled in accredited colleges and universities in the United States, and who have received baccalaureate degrees. Graduate and professional students are eligible.

The amount of each Fellowship will cover the cost of tuition and a stipend to be allocated towards room, board, living expenses and income taxes. The Trustee has set the stipend at $18,000 for the award year.

The UIC campus deadline is January 4, 2023. 

Required application materials:

  • Application
  • CV
  • One certified copy of undergraduate and graduate transcripts to date.
  • One copy of your graduate exam test scores.
  • A Statement of Purpose up to three pages long (double spaced) which considers the relationship between your graduate level study and your intended personal and/or professional goals. Your Statement of Purpose must include a 10-15 line abstract at the top (included in the three pages) that explains, in LAYMAN’S terms, the essence of your proposed topic of study or dissertation, the methodology of its treatment and its anticipated impact on your field of study.
  • Letter of Recommendation from Dean of Graduate School or Department Chair. [Latter preferred;  arrange to have it sent electronically to Benn Williams – If you seek a letter from the Dean, it will be provided it if you are selected as the UIC nominee]
  • Letters of Recommendation from at least two professors who have taught or worked closely with you. [Arrange to have sent electronically to Benn Williams]
  • One copy of your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
  • One copy of your Financial Aid Summary from UIC.
  • One copy of your Federal Income Tax Return for each of the prior two years available (including spouse’s returns, if applicable) [thus returns filed in 2021 and 2022 for the January 2023 deadline].

Applicants can send electronic files using the naming convention below to FERPA-approved Box: DZL_Sub.b7roqr82lsf4rfix@u.box.com

Naming convention of files (using example of Rosa Parks): DZL_Year_NomineeLastNameFirstInitial-Component.pdf, e.g., DZL_2023_ParksR-Application.pdf; DZL_2023_ParksR-GRE.pdf, etc.

Confidential materials should be sent to:

Benn Williams (bwilli7uic.edu). Do not send anything to the Graduate College via campus mail or postal services.

The UIC campus deadline is January 4, 2023 to allow sufficient time to review materials.

Institutional contact and DZL alum:  Benn Williams, Fellowships and Awards Coordinator.

Per the funder’s instructions: Do not contact JPMorgan or members of the selection committee. Effective spring 2022, the campus advisor will be sent decision notifications.

The "Mellons" Heading link

As the largest supporter of the arts and humanities in the US, the Mellon Foundation seeks to build just communities where ideas and imagination can thrive. It does this, in part, by underwriting dissertation fellowships administered by various nonprofit organizations. Mellon has, however, discontinued a number of its fellowship programs for doctoral students. Consigned to the annals of history: the Mellon/ACLS Community College Faculty Fellowship; the Mellon/ACLS Public Fellows program was briefly (for three years) replaced by the Emerging Voices program, which is also defunct; the Mellon/SSRC International Dissertation Research Fellowships; the Mellon/ACLS Dissertation Completion Fellowship; and now the Mellon/Council for European Studies Dissertation Completion Fellowship.

The Mellon/ACLS Dissertation Innovation Fellowship program is designed to support emerging scholars as they pursue bold and innovative research in the humanities and interpretive social sciences. The program is made possible by a grant from the Mellon Foundation.

Summary: The program will make awards to doctoral students who show promise of leading their fields in important new directions. The fellowships are designed to intervene at the formative stage of dissertation development, before writing is advanced, and provide time and support for emerging scholars’ innovative approaches to dissertation research – practical, trans- or interdisciplinary, collaborative, critical, or methodological. The program seeks to expand the range of research methodologies, formats, and areas of inquiry traditionally considered suitable for the dissertation, with a particular focus on supporting scholars who can build a more diverse, inclusive, and equitable academy.

Fellowship Details:

  • Award: $40,000 stipend for the fellowship year, plus up to $8,000 for project-related research, training, development, and travel costs. The award also includes a $2,000 stipend for external mentorship. ~45 to be awarded.
  • Duration: one year beginning summer 2023.
  • Deadline: 8 pm Central Time, November 2, 2022.

Eligibility:

The basic eligibility criteria for applicants are outlined in the bullets below. As opposed to fellowship programs that support dissertations where writing and research is well underway, advanced, or nearing completion, this program intends to intervene at the formative stages of project development. Given the variation in graduate student trajectories, and the variation of curricular requirements across departments and schools, this program gives only broad parameters for the eligible period of tenure of the fellowship. Some applicants may be applying in the year immediately before candidacy to support the first year of work as a PhD candidate; others may seek to expand their field/methodological horizons at an earlier stage of their graduate studies. As described in the criteria below, the program requires applicants to have completed all required coursework in their doctoral curriculum by the time the fellowship commences. Individuals must be enrolled full-time and may not accept teaching or research assistantships, other major fellowships, internships, or similar internal or external awards during fellowship tenure.

Applicants must:

  • Be a PhD student in a humanities or social science department in the United States.
  • Be able to take up a full year (9-12 months) of sustained specialized research and training, released from normal coursework, assistantships, and teaching responsibilities.
  • Have completed at least two years and all required coursework in the PhD programs in which they are currently enrolled by the start of the fellowship term.
  • As of September 2023 require at least two years remaining with their programs to complete the PhD degree.
  • have not previously applied for this fellowship more than once.

Professional or applied PhDs, terminal degrees that are not a PhD (such as an EdD or MFA), or PhDs outside of humanities and social science departments–business, clinical or counseling psychology, creative or performing arts, education, engineering, filmmaking, law, library and information sciences, life/physical sciences, public administration, public health or medicine, public policy, social work, or social welfare–are not eligible. If you are unsure whether your department or interdisciplinary program qualifies you for this fellowship program, please email fellowships@acls.org with a brief summary of your affiliation.

Note that transcripts are not required.

Evaluation Criteria:

  • The potential of the project to advance the field(s) of study in which it is proposed and make an original and significant contribution to knowledge.
  • The potential of the project to challenge scholarly convention and/or expand the prevailing norms of what constitutes important scholarship through its subject matter, meaningful engagement with an interdisciplinary and/or community partner, innovative format, novel methodology, or theoretical framework. Applicants should have a strong grasp of the existing norms and trends in their primary discipline of study, and who have taken advantage of the opportunities available in their department and campus to advance their training and scholarly projects.
  • The feasibility of the proposed project and the likelihood that the applicant will execute the work within the proposed time frame (during and after the fellowship term).
  • Fulfillment of one or more of the following factors:
    • Applicant’s membership in one or more groups that have been historically underrepresented in the professoriate, including but not limited to Black/African Americans, Latinx/Hispanic Americans, Native Americans, and Pacific Islanders.
    • The project’s thoughtful engagement with communities that are historically underrepresented in higher education and the potential for this experience to shape research.
    • Scholarship and scholarly practice that is responsive to the interests and histories of people of color and other historically marginalized communities.

Application Components:

  • Completed application form
  • Proposal (no more than seven pages, double spaced, in Times New Roman 11-point font, including any footnotes or endnotes).
    • The applicant should describe the aims of their research and clearly explain how they will advance those aims during the fellowship period.
    • The proposal should also include a description of the training, workshops, travel, or anything else the applicant feels will be necessary to advance the project during the fellowship term.
    • If the applicant has already identified an external mentor, please note the mentor in the proposal and describe how that individual was selected. If the mentor is yet to be determined, please provide a brief description of what qualities and capacities you will seek within a mentor. What kinds of perspectives would this mentor bring to your project?
    • The most effective proposal will clearly describe the applicant’s innovative approach to their dissertation project and make a compelling argument for why the timing of the fellowship would be ideal for their proposed research and training and within the context of the full timeline of their doctoral studies. Applicants should also detail how they will measure their own success in the fellowship year.
  • Optional: Up to two additional pages of images, musical scores, or other similar supporting non-text materials, without annotation
  • A one-page timeline of fellowship year activity with provisional sketch of post-fellowship trajectory, outlining the time leading up to the completion of the dissertation.
  • Bibliography (without annotation, single-spaced, no more than two pages)
  • Short personal statement (no more than two pages, double spaced, in Times New Roman 11-point font) describing your journey as a scholar and how your work comes together at the nexus of personal experience, research interests, and desire to shift the forms and formats of academic research.
  • A brief work sample (no more than fifteen pages total, double spaced, including any images and footnotes or endnotes, in Times New Roman 11-point font), including a brief description of context and the sample’s relation to the proposed project.
  • One letter of recommendation. The letter must come from the applicant’s dissertation advisor, or a faculty member eligible to be the advisor.
  • A statement from the applicant’s institution (preferably from the applicant’s department chair, director of graduate studies, or dean). The provided form will ask the institutional representative to attest that (1) if the applicant holds a multi-year financial award from the institution and a fellowship is awarded, this support would be paused for the duration of the fellowship and the applicant would be allowed to retain and resume the remainder of that support in subsequent years; (2) the institution will allow the fellow to remain enrolled during the fellowship year and will waive tuition and fees; and (3) the intention of the fellowship is to promote non-traditional direction setting for the sake of valuing innovations in scholarly methods and subject, and the institution believes that its graduate curriculum and progress-charting for students can respect and accommodate this exploration of non-traditional approaches to scholarship.
  • An ORCID iD. Learn more.

Host at UIC, the IUPLR/UIC Mellon Fellows Program is a dissertation completion fellowship that seeks to foster, mentor, and professionalize a national cohort of Humanities doctoral students focusing on Latino Studies in order to maximize effective progress to complete the PhD, increase job-market readiness, build community, and impart a sustainable, healthy writing practice.

The Inter-University Program for Latino Research is a national consortium of university-based centers dedicated to the advancement of the Latino intellectual presence in the United States. For more than 35 years, IUPLR has promoted core research on issues of importance to Latino communities and the broader US society. The consortium has become a respected national catalyst and facilitator of in-depth policy-relevant research and works to expand the pool of Latino scholars and leaders. The IUPLR headquarters are currently at the University of Houston Center for Mexican American Studies.

There is a growing Latino population in the United States, but as of yet only a small number of Latina/o studies scholars in the humanities, particularly members of underrepresented communities, that can contribute to understanding and reimagining this changing, charged and complex cultural terrain. In addition, students concentrating on Latino studies subjects often do not find mentors within the disciplines who know their subject matter, leaving them personally and intellectually isolated in their disciplines. Recent research shows that 1) financial support and relief from teaching duties improves dissertation completion outcomes and 2) students do best when they feel that they are part of an intellectual community. Through the Mellon Fellows Program, we hope to strengthen the field of Latina/o Studies by building a network of successful early career academics, researchers, and professionals.

The fellowship is a complete program that goes beyond financial support. It includes a year-round dissertation writing support, professional development, mentorship, and job market support. Fellows  participate in a summer or fall institute in Chicago, various online webinars and meetings throughout the year, structured writing and professionalization programs, monthly cohort check-ins, and a mentorship program.

Our primary program goals are the following:

1.) Increase time to degree for graduate students and improving the quality of Latino Studies dissertations in the humanities

2.) Cultivate sustainable writing practices that prioritize living full, healthy lives as academics

3.) Prepare fellows to be more competitive job candidates and to make the transition from graduate school to academia

4.) Leave in place good practices for the universities and centers involved

5.) Strengthen the field of Latino/a Studies by building a community of successful early career academics

Foundation-Funded Prestigious Fellowships (select) Heading link

There are a number of young and mature fellowships that offer fellowships for graduate students. Below is a curated selection.

Other Federal Opportunities (Select) Heading link

More resources available: Fellowship Toolbox