Public History Fellowships

Every year, the Public History Program partners with local organizations to offer 4-6 competitive fellowships, available to enrolled first and second year students. These fellowships are akin to other universities' Teaching Assistant positions; however, as students work onsite with partners, they offer an opportunity for significant public historyexperience. Fellows receive a stipend from the partner organization in addition to tuition credits from the College of Arts and Sciences.

Fellowship appointments are for the duration of the academic year, lasting from September to the following April. Application information is circulated to enrolled students each May. 

Fellowship awards are determined by partners. They are based on merit, a competitive application, and an interview with the partner organization. 

Recent Examples

Peace Corps Community Archive at American University

Location: American University Archives and Special Collections
Type: Archives, Digitization, Collections

The Peace Corps Community Archive, curated by the American University Library, gathers, preserves, and exhibits materials created by Peace Corps volunteers. By collecting and making available personal memorabilia from Peace Corps volunteers, the archive seeks to develop a living history of the Peace Corps and the communities in which volunteers have served and to document volunteers' experiences and impact.

The Public History Fellow assists in a variety of projects, including improving the archive's catalog, maintaining the collection's blog, and developing an online exhibit.

History Associates, Inc.

Location: Rockville, MD
Type: Historical Research and Writing

History Associates, Inc. provides businesses, nonprofits, professional associations, and government agencies with professional historical services, including management of archives and historical records, historical research and writing, museum exhibit development, educational programming, and interpretive planning.

The Public History Fellow works on project teams alongside full-time staff on a wide range of assignments, including conducting archival research, processing historical records, and developing museum exhibits.

White House Historical Association

Location: Downtown DC
Type: Research and New Media Development

Founded by First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy in 1961 to assist in the collection and exhibition of American historical and cultural artifacts related to the Executive Mansion, the White House Historical Association is a private nonprofit educational organization that works to promote understanding and appreciation of the White House. The organization conducts outreach efforts to educate the public about the White House and its history.

Two Public History Fellows assist staff in creating educational content for the organization through a variety of research and writing tasks, including working with the WHHA's digital team.

DC Preservation League

Location: Downtown DC
Type: Preservation Planning, Outreach, and Education

Since its beginnings in 1971 as Don't Tear It Down, the DC Preservation League has served as DC's only city-wide preservation nonprofit, and it continues to promote a variety of preservation efforts throughout the city. Through advocacy and education efforts, the DC Preservation League seeks to protect DC's history and encourage greater understanding.

The Public History Fellow participates in outreach and education efforts and collaborates with the organization's various teams to promote the preservation of DC's history and built environment. The Fellow also works on DCPL's web and mobile apps for location-based content relating to DC's landmarks.

National Coalition for History

Location: Downtown DC
Type: Advocacy and Outreach

A consortium of over 55 organizations that represents a variety of groups — among them historians, archivists, teachers, preservationists, political scientists, museum professionals, and more — the National Coalition for History advocates for DC's historical community on Capitol Hill. The coalition works to encourage the study and appreciation of history by promoting the interests of stakeholders in the field before Congress.

The Public History Fellow participates in social media and advocacy, including monitoring legislative hearings, working with the Congressional History Caucus, and conducting outreach to coalition members.

Day of Service in Rendville, Ohio, with the Rendville Historic Preservation Society and the Southeast Ohio History Center. Mia Owens works with a Rendville resident to digitize documents and photographs. Credit: Ohio History Service Corps.

Fellowship Created for Studying History of Slavery in Washington, DC

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