External Scholarships and Fellowships for Classicists
|The 'Moschophoros,' dedicated on the Athenian Acropolis in the 6th century BC|
If you are looking for support for a particular phase of your academic development or for a special research or travel project, always explore your options as widely as possible. Besides exploring the material on this page, you may want to visit the reference room of a large city or campus library (such as CUA's Mullen Library) and the facilities or the websites of the Foundation Center, an organization that collects and disseminates information about financial support for both individuals and nonprofit organizations. (There is a Foundation Center library located in downtown Washington, DC.) These locations will contain major directories of grant and scholarship aid--and will also host professional reference staff to assist you.
Remember, in no case whatsoever should you pay an independent 'service' or website to locate sources of financial aid for you. If you need assistance in determining whether a given source of funding is legitimate, an academic adviser or university career counselor should be able to help you.
For undergraduates preparing for first-time entrance to graduate study
Many universities offer some funding for graduate study, but external scholarships and fellowships should also play a role in your considerations. They tend to have deadlines that will fall very early in your final year of undergraduate study, or even in your junior year (cf. below). Some of the best-known sources of independent funding for graduate school in the humanities in the US include:
The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill maintains an extensive scholarship website. Princeton University's lists of graduate fellowships, fellowships for study abroad, and fellowships for underrepresented groups are also very useful.
There are, of course, many other potential sources of funding, including smaller or partial scholarships and fellowships funded by e.g. benevolent, ethnic, and business organizations, and these are well worth the effort required to research them, since they can add up quickly. Some time on the internet will help you discover some of these, as will paging through the scholarship directories in university and Foundation Center libraries (cf. above). Be prepared to commit significant time and energy to this endeavor, but also be comforted that it really does often pay off.
For students interested in seeking a graduate degree or second BA overseas
IMPORTANT: Preparation for overseas degree seeking is a long and extensive process. Initial applications for major fellowships such as the Rhodes, Marshall, and Fulbright are generally due in home university offices (for initial rounds of vetting and elimination) in early to mid-September of one's final year of study, i.e. one full calendar year before entrance at a European or other institution is desired. Many viable candidates are rendered ineligible for these competitions due to their lack of attention to these early deadlines, so be sure to follow university directions to the letter. Additional assistance with the extensive applications may be available to you even if you are not (or are no longer) at CUA; many schools maintain faculty advisers whose responsibilities include preparing students and their files for Rhodes, Marshall, and Fulbright competitions. Ask at your department or at the career counseling and overseas study offices.
Here are just a few of the major overseas scholarship and fellowship programs that may be of interest to you:
For current graduate students
There are three times during your graduate career when you are eligible for the greatest number of fellowships: before you begin graduate school, when you move from an MA into a PhD program, and when you are writing or about to finish a dissertation. During the intervening years, your best sources of financial support will likely come in two forms: your own university's funding (this is often when you might serve as a teaching assistant) and funding that will pay for you to travel for research and language study, often during the summers.
Advanced site-study programs that take place during the summer include The American Academy in Rome Classical Summer School and The American School of Classical Studies at Athens Summer Sessions; both of these programs offer their own scholarships, and some other specialized summer programs do, as well.
For graduate students preparing to write (or looking to complete) dissertations
There are a number of independent national fellowships in the humanities that provide support for research and writing. The list below is necessarily non-exhaustive, but the following organizations offer external dissertation fellowships for which classicists and specialists in late antique, patristic, early Christian, and medieval topics may be qualified. Some of these may be held in any location; others are confined to the US or to locations overseas.
- The American Association of University Women Dissertation Fellowships
- The American School of Classical Studies at Athens (various fellowships)
- The Dumbarton Oaks Junior Fellowships
- The Fulbright Scholarships
- The Josephine De Kármán Fellowships
- The Mellon/ACLS Dissertation Completion Fellowships
- The Mellon Fellowships for Dissertation Research in Original Sources
- The Charlotte W. Newcombe Doctoral Dissertation Fellowships
- The Rome Prize Pre-Doctoral Fellowships
- The Mary Isabel Sibley Fellowship of Phi Beta Kappa
Harvard University's graduate grant database (recommended by CUA's School of Theology and Religious Studies)
The German Studies Network list of resources for dissertation research in German-speaking countries (Germany, Austria, and Switzerland)
The Foundation Center (library on-site in DC where materials can be consulted for free)
For additional leads, the following websites are also recommended (some repeated from above for convenience):
Do not forget to check with the graduate academic and deans' offices at your university for additional information on potential sources of dissertation support. Even if no internal university fellowships are available, many external organizations solicit applications by sending informational materials to deans, rather than to departments.