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< Annual Fellowships

About Annual Fellowships

Common questions about Mandel Center fellowships

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My research topic isn’t necessarily solely related the Holocaust. Should I still apply?

Yes, diversity of research topics is a primary goal of the Mandel Center for Advanced Holocaust Studies’ fellowship program, and we encourage projects on any subjects that would benefit from our archival collections and other resources.

Past project titles include:

  • “Writing Postcolonial African Genocides: The Holocaust and Fictional Representations of Genocide in Nigeria and Rwanda,” Chigbo Anyaduba, 2018–2019 J.B. and Maurice C. Shapiro Fellow),
  • “Stolpersteine and Holocaust Music from the Former USSR,” Alexandra Birch, 2018–2019 Alexander Grass Memorial Fellow
  • “‘I Might Have Seen the Ashes of Some of My Brothers’: African American Holocaust Memory and the Resonance of Black Antifascism from World War to Cold War,” Anna Duensing, 2018–2019 Diane and Howard Wohl Fellow

In addition, the Mandel Center welcomes applications from all relevant disciplines. Past fellows have been archaeologists, political scientists, sociologists, anthropologists, and literature scholars, to name a few examples. 

“As an art historian, I have never had access to a set of peers studying and writing about the Holocaust. In addition to the incredible resources available during my fellowship—from the archive to academic talks to the support of staff from across the Museum—I have gained lasting friendships with a group of scholars who have taught me so much.”

–Alissa Schapiro, 2019–2020 William J. Lowenberg Memorial Fellow on America, the Holocaust and the Jews

What is required for a successful application? 

Successful proposals highlight the originality of a project and its ability to shed new light on the history of the Holocaust. A key factor in determining fellowship eligibility is the intended use of the Museum’s robust collections. Please note that a Works Cited/Bibliography List, if included, would count towards the overall five page limit in the project proposal.

Proposals should also include the resources available at the Museum that scholars will need to access in order to support their research. An addendum listing these resources may be attached in addition to the five-page project proposal, and is recommended. Important resources may otherwise be referenced in the body of the project proposal. 

When is the application deadline? Am I able to update my application after the application period has ended? 

The Mandel Center will hold this year's competition for fellowship residencies in 2022-2023. We appreciate applicants' understanding, as the ongoing pandemic may affect the program in a variety of ways, such as our ability to accommodate preferred residency terms. 

Applications for the Annual Fellowship Competition must be submitted online by 11:59 p.m. Eastern Standard Time, November 15 of each year. Applications for the Summer Graduate Student Research Fellowship Competition must be submitted online by 11:59 p.m. EST on January 15 of each year. This includes all materials from the applicant and references. We encourage candidates to begin their applications early and contact their applicable references in advance, as application materials cannot be updated after the deadline has passed. If you wish to inform the committee of significant developments relating to your career progress, however, you may inform us by email, and we will relay that information to the committee.

What is the award process? When will I be notified about the outcome of my application?

Applicants will be notified of fellowship outcomes by April of the following year, although it is not uncommon to hear of outcomes in March. The selection committee weighs many factors in the evaluation of project proposals. It considers a wide range of disciplinary perspectives; a balance of gender; hosting both graduate students and more advanced scholars; and engaging with United States-based and international scholars. The specific fellowship and the length of the award are at the Mandel Center’s discretion, and staff members are unable to provide feedback on individual applications. 

I am not a US citizen. Am I eligible to apply? What does the visa process involve for foreign fellows? 

Please note that because of the COVID-19 pandemic, some visa processing has been suspended and many borders are closed to travel for the foreseeable future. Therefore, most fellowships will operate on a quasi-virtual basis for Fall and Winter 2021.

The Mandel Center welcomes applications to the Annual Fellowship program for any relevant project from citizens of any country. All international fellows are required to obtain a J-1 visa in order to be in-residence at the Museum. This process is facilitated by the Museum’s International Exchanges Officer, who provides visa assistance to both fellows and their immediate dependents. At the appropriate time, the International Exchanges Officer will contact the fellow directly to begin the process of applying for their visa. While we are able to provide visa application assistance, the Museum does not provide support allowances for accompanying family members. The Museum further follows US Department of State guidelines, which require scholars and their dependents to purchase health insurance. 

The Museum is unable to provide visa assistance to fellows part of the Summer Graduate Student Research Fellowship program.

Does the Museum offer other fellowships?

Yes. The Mandel Center’s Annual Fellowship Program includes several named fellowships, including the William J. Lowenberg Memorial Fellowship on America, the Holocaust, and the Jews, and the Institut für Zeitgeschichte and Mandel Center Exchange Scholar Fellowship. All applicants should apply using the same process as the Annual Fellowship Competition to be considered for the above. 

If you are a scholar earning your master’s degree or going into your first year of a PhD program, please consider applying for the Mandel Center’s Summer Graduate Student Research Fellowship Program

Outside of the Mandel Center, the Museum’s Levine Institute for Holocaust Education offers a Museum Teacher Fellowship Program, and the Simon-Skjodt Center for the Prevention of Genocide has its own Tom A. Bernstein Genocide Prevention Fellowship. Please contact these departments directly for further information.

Does the Mandel Center offer health insurance to fellows? What about housing? 

No, the Mandel Center does not provide health insurance. Fellows are responsible for their own health insurance. The Mandel Center likewise does not provide housing to fellows. The Visiting Scholar Programs divisions may provide fellows with a housing guide that includes information about Washington, DC and the surrounding area.