Special Collections offers a variety of fellowships for undergraduate and graduate students. These experiences offer the opportunity to explore original lines of inquiry while researching rare and unique materials.

Undergraduate Fellowships

Dean’s Undergraduate Research Awards (DURA)

Next Deadline: 11:59PM on Friday, March 9, 2018

Info Session: Macksey Seminar Room (BLC, M-level) Monday, February 12 at 5:30PM

The Sheridan Libraries DURA is intended for students working on research projects that specifically utilize primary source materials in the rare book, manuscript, and archival collections of the Sheridan Libraries. The awards support research conducted over the summer months, and are meant to be used as cost-of-living stipends for awardees for the duration of their research. In recent years, awards have consisted of $1,250 for a four-week research period, up to a maximum of $3,750 for a 12-week period of funding, although levels may vary. Any additional research expenses during the research period must be drawn from the total amount of the student award, though some costs such as digitization may be possible without charge. Students typically live in Baltimore for the summer months, and use the Libraries’ collections for intensive research; a minimum of 25 hours per week of work with the designated research materials is required.

Applicants must identify a faculty mentor or a curator/librarian, who can help applicants identify materials for research, formulate project proposals, and conduct research. Research outcomes might take the form of a traditional research essay, a digital exhibition, a video, or something else entirely.

The fellowships are restricted to freshman, sophomore, and junior applicants; seniors graduating in 2018 are not eligible.

Application Instructions:

  • A two- to three-page, single-spaced proposal that addresses the following:
    • The topic to be explored and question(s) you want to investigate.
    • Specific primary source materials in the Sheridan Libraries’ collections and (if relevant) at other libraries that you will examine.
    • Your qualifications for conducting the research: eg, interests, related classes, personal experience, work experience, related research.
    • Your timeline for completion of the project.
    • Expected outcome of the project: eg, honors thesis, essay, exhibition, digital project.
    • An itemized budget.
    • How often you and your mentor will meet about the project.
    • Send your application letter to Heidi Herr at hherr1@jhu.edu.
  • One letter of recommendation from a faculty member or curator/librarian. Once your application is submitted, ask your recommender to email their letter to Heidi Herr at hherr1@jhu.edu. Recommendation letters should address the following:
    • How long and in what capacity you have known the student
    • The student’s academic strengths, qualifications, and ability to conduct independent research

Please contact us for help and more information!

  • Gabrielle Dean, PhD, William Kurrelmeyer Curator of Rare Books & Manuscripts, for projects using nineteenth-, twentieth-, and twenty-first century materials.
  • Earle Havens, PhD, Nancy H. Hall Curator of Rare Books & Manuscripts, for projects using materials from the ancient world through the eighteenth century.

Special Collections Freshman Fellows

Next Deadline: Fall 2018

We are thrilled to announce our Freshman Fellows for the 2017-2018 academic year.  Tim Lyu, Brian Joseph, Keyi Yin, and Chloe Otterson will be exploring a variety of topics, from the disappearance of Hopkins professor Jose Robles to a study of 19th century books and other printed ephemera pertaining to the supernatural world.

Freshman Fellows is an academic opportunity designed to introduce students to conducting research with rare books, manuscripts, and archival material. Freshmen can choose from different “time capsules” of themed collections from Special Collections resources or propose their own topic to explore! Fellows will work with Special Collections staff, who will serve as mentors and provide one-on-one research guidance. The program culminates in the creation of an end product of the students’ choosing that focuses on their research. Each fellow will receive a $1,000 stipend.

Past Fellows have translated and researched 16th century Latin texts; pored through collections of advertisements, women’s magazines, and books to examine how the 19th century Dress Reform movement impacted first wave feminism; traced the development of student life on Homewood Campus from the 1920s to today; and examined how editors changed Shakespeare’s language through the centuries. They have shared their research through curated displays in the Special Collections Reading Room, poster sessions, and public talks. Feeling inspired? Consider applying to be a Freshman Fellow!  We will be accepting applications for the 2018-2019 academic year starting in August.  Details involving the application process will be published in early July of 2018.  If you do have questions about the program, please contact  Heidi Herr.


Fellowships for Graduate and Undergraduate Students

Hugh Hawkins Research Fellowships for the Study of Hopkins History

Next Deadline: 11:59PM on Friday, March 9, 2018

Hugh Hawkins Research Fellowships are awarded annually to undergraduate or graduate students from any school at Johns Hopkins who wish to conduct research into an aspect of the rich history of Johns Hopkins University. Fellowship recipients are notified in the spring and conduct their research over the summer.

Special consideration will be given to projects exploring the history of diversity at Johns Hopkins or that propose a final product rooted in the digital humanities. The Hugh Hawkins Fellowships will enhance the undergraduate and graduate research experience by providing opportunities for original research in historical collections and for sharing research with the public.

Each fellowship recipient will work closely with a faculty mentor and an archivist mentor during the fellowship. Fellowship recipients’ work will be preserved in the Ferdinand Hamburger University Archives, creating a rich, continually growing, and publicly available body of original scholarship that will serve as a valuable resource for generations to come.

View the complete description of the fellowship guidelines and application process

Graduate Fellowships

Archives Fellowships

Next Deadline: March 2018

Graduate students interested in topics relating to the history of Johns Hopkins University and Hospital are encouraged to apply to the Hugh Hawkins Research Fellowships for the Study of Hopkins History.

For a complete description of the fellowship guidelines and application process, visit Hopkins Retrospective.

Denis Family Graduate Student Curatorial Fellowships

The Denis Family Graduate Student Curatorial Fellowships give graduate students the opportunity to conduct original research and work with curators in launching a public exhibition hosted by the Sheridan Libraries. Fellows contribute to all aspects of the exhibition, from deciding which objects are to be displayed to promotional strategies.

Past exhibitions include The Enigmatic Edgar A.Poe in Baltimore and Beyond: Selections from the Susan Jaffe Tane Collection and Lost and Found in the Funhouse: The John Barth Collection

Singleton Center Summer Library Graduate Research Fellowships

Next Deadline: TBA

The Singleton Center for the Study of Premodern Europe provides summer research fellowships to currently enrolled PhD students in the humanities (Krieger School of Arts & Sciences, Institute for the History of Medicine, Peabody Institute DMA students) who are working on topics spanning the Middle Ages, Renaissance, and Enlightenment periods in Europe and European colonies abroad.

For a complete description of the program, visit the the Singleton Center.