Mellon Foundation Postdoctoral Curatorial Fellowship at the American Philosophical Society Museum
The American Philosophical Society (APS), the nation’s first learned society, invites applications for its two-year Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Post-Doctoral Curatorial Fellowship. The APS seeks applications from recent PhDs in the fields of history of science, 18th- or 19th-century American history, art history, museology, or any other related humanities disciplines. The Fellowship, based in the APS Museum, provides hands-on experience in curatorial work and the opportunity to pursue an independent research project, preferably one related to the collections or programs of the Society’s library and museum.
The Mellon Fellow conducts research in the APS collections in preparation for the APS Museum’s exhibitions exploring the intersections of history, art, and science. The exhibitions take place in Philosophical Hall, located within Independence National Historical Park. As the public face of the APS, the museum researches and interprets the APS’s extensive collections for the regional, national, and international visitors who converge on Philadelphia’s historic district.
The Fellow’s primary responsibility is to conduct scholarly research for exhibitions, programs, and other related activities. He or she is fully integrated into the APS Museum staff, working closely with others on the curatorial team. The Fellow gains extensive experience in planning and implementing exhibitions as well as researching and writing interpretive materials for non-scholarly audiences (exhibition texts, publications, etc.). Depending on the Fellow’s interests and the Museum’s needs, he or she may also participate in public programming, museum education, collections management, and/or grant-writing. Twenty percent of the Fellow’s time is reserved for his or her own independent research, ideally using resources at the APS or kindred regional institutions. The Fellow also has the opportunity to network with APS Library staff and other post-doctoral fellows in the region’s cultural institutions.
This two-year Fellowship begins July 1, 2018 and ends June 30, 2020. Compensation is $47,000 a year plus benefits, along with additional funds for research support, travel, and relocation. The Fellowship may not be held concurrently with any other fellowship or grant.
The application deadline is November 27, 2017. Notification is in February 2018.
- PhD in any humanities discipline, awarded within the past five years. 18th- and 19th-century American history, the history of science, and the history of art often relate most closely to exhibition content. However, the museum’s approach is interdisciplinary, and applications from qualified researchers in any humanities discipline are welcome. Applicants must have PhD in hand by June 30, 2018.
- Strong interest in exploring a career in the museum field.
- Excellent analytical and writing skills; experience in writing for different purposes and broad audiences.
- Comfort with working collaboratively.
- Broad interests, along with the intellectual and conceptual tools necessary for working across disciplines and time periods, and for making creative connections.
- Flexibility and the capacity to learn quickly.
- Project-oriented organizational skills.
Applications must be submitted by EMAIL only with the subject line as follows: Last Name, First Name - Mellon Application 2018-20
- Cover letter stating interest in exploring curatorial work.
- Completed application form
- Comprehensive curriculum vitae, with items listed within categories in reverse chronological order (include external support received during graduate study, fellowships, teaching or research assistantships, tuition grants, etc.).
- Statement of current research interests (no more than 1,500 words). This statement should include a description of a potential research project during the Fellowship, preferably one related to the APS collections or programs.
- Excerpt(s) from dissertation or thesis (no more than 5,000 words). An excerpt from a working draft is acceptable.
- Example of non-scholarly writing, if available.
- A letter from a Department Chair or Director of Graduate Studies (or equivalent) confirming that the applicant will complete their PhD by June 30, 2017.
- Three confidential letters of recommendation, which must be submitted on the APS recommendation form