NEH Seminars and Institutes provide opportunities for college and university faculty to enrich and revitalize their understanding, scholarship, and teaching of humanities topics that bear upon undergraduate education. These specific study opportunities are not intended to duplicate graduate- level courses.

Each seminar provides an intimate and focused environment in which sixteen participants (NEH Summer Scholars) study a specific humanities topic under the guidance of one or two established scholars. Seminars have few, if any, visiting faculty. They emphasize sustained interaction among the participants and director(s) through discussion of common readings, conversations about teaching, and advising on independent projects.

Each institute allows twenty-five to thirty-six participants (NEH Summer Scholars) to pursue an intensive program of study under a team of scholarly experts, who present a range of perspectives on a humanities topic. Participants and scholars mutually explore connections between scholarship and teaching of the topic.

In any given year, an individual may apply to two Seminars or Institutes, but may attend only one.


A selection committee comprised of the project director and two or more colleagues evaluates all complete applications to select a group of NEH Summer Scholars and identify alternates.

Past NEH summer programs in cartographic studies for higher education scholars organized by the Newberry Library have been well represented by scholars from a wide variety of institutional contexts, including community colleges, liberal arts colleges, and universities, all with an interest in the history and theory of maps and mapping that is not easily accommodated by their home or local institutions. This seminar is designed to be accessible, relevant, and of interest to scholars and teachers across humanities fields who have not had the opportunity to study the history and theory of mapping in depth, or who may have little opportunity to work in collections rich in historic maps, but who would like to become conversant with the history of cartography as it relates to their respective areas of research and teaching.

Application essays should explain how this program will benefit the participant professionally. They should, therefore, address the following:

  1. your quality and commitment as a teacher, scholar, and interpreter of the humanities;
  2. your intellectual interests as they relate to the topic of the seminar or institute;
  3. your special perspectives, skills, or experiences that would contribute to the program;
  4. evidence that participation will enhance your long-term teaching and scholarship; and
  5. if appropriate, an independent project and its potential contribution to the seminar or

 Three seminar spaces and five institute spaces must be reserved for non-tenured/non-tenure-track faculty members. Two seminar spaces and three institute spaces may be reserved for advanced graduate students. First consideration is given to those who have not previously attended an NEH Seminar or Institute. When choices must be made between equally qualified candidates, preference is given to those who would enhance the diversity of the program.


Each participant will receive a stipend according to the duration of the Seminar or Institute, whether one ($1,200) two ($2,100), three ($2,700), or four ($3,300) weeks. The stipend is intended to help cover travel, housing, meals, and basic academic expenses. Stipends are taxable.

Seminar and institute participants must attend all meetings and engage fully as professionals in the work of the project. During the project, participants may not undertake teaching assignments or professional activities unrelated to their participation in the project. Those who, for any reason, do not complete the full tenure of the project will receive a reduced stipend.

 At the end of the project’s residential period, NEH Summer Scholars are expected to submit an online evaluation of the seminar or institute.


Please review the Eligibility Criteria for participation in NEH Summer Seminars and Institutes as an NEH Summer Scholar.

Before you apply, please read the seminar description in this site’s “Program Overview” page, and the following Application Information and Instructions, courtesy of the NEH:

2019 Application Information and Instructions

1. The Application Cover Sheet

  • Compete the cover sheet online at:
  • Follow the prompts.
  • Before you click the “submit” button on the NEH website, save your Cover Sheet to a PDF file (or, print a hard copy and scan into a PDF).  You will be asked to upload it later to the Newberry’s online application portal.  Then click “submit.”
  • You will be asked if you want to fill out a cover sheet for a second project. If you do, repeat the process.
  • Do not use the same cover sheet for different projects.

2.  A Résumé and References

Please include a résumé or curriculum vitae (not to exceed five pages). Include the name, title, phone number, and e-mail address of two professional references.

3.  The Application Essay

The application essay should be no more than four double-spaced pages. It should address your interest in the subject to be studied; qualifications and experiences that equip you to do the work of the seminar or institute and to make a contribution to the learning community; a statement of what you want to accomplish by participating; and, if appropriate, description of an independent project and its relation to your professional responsibilities.


Create a log-in and password for Newberry’s SlideRoom account, where you will upload all of your information and application materials:

Applications must be submitted to SlideRoom, not the NEH, no later than March 1, 2019. Applications sent to the NEH will not be reviewed.

Successful applicants will be notified of their selection on Friday, March 29, 2019. They will have until Friday, April 5, 2019 to accept or decline the offer.

Note: Once you have accepted an offer to attend any NEH Summer Program (NEH Summer Seminar or Institute), you may not accept an additional offer or withdraw in order to accept a different offer.


Endowment programs do not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, disability, or age. For further information, write to the Equal Opportunity Officer, National Endowment for the Humanities, 400 7th Street, SW, Washington, DC 20024. TDD: 202/606-8282 (this is a special telephone device for the Deaf).