There are a number of competitive fellowships available at Rare Book School with various requirements for eligibility. Please refer to the fellowship descriptions below for details.

RBS-awarded fellowships may be redeemed for in-person or online courses. A single scholarship or fellowship award may be redeemed for one in-person course, one 22-hour online course, or two 12-hour online courses within the same year, or three 6-hour courses, or a combination of one 12-hour and two 6-hour courses (partial awards may not be carried over to the second year). For more information, please contact your RBS-awarded fellowship administrator directly.

The Andrew W. Mellon Fellowship for Diversity, Inclusion & Cultural Heritage

This fellowship aims to advance multicultural collections through innovative and inclusive curatorial practice and leadership. In the 2020–21 cycle, a cohort of fifteen fellows will be chosen to participate in the program. Fellows will hold their awards for a three-year term. The fellowship program is open to early- and mid-career professionals (currently employed full time in a special collections library, archive, or other cultural heritage institution located in the United States) who identify with diverse racial or ethnic communities, and/or who work primarily with collections that document minority, immigrant, and non-Western cultural traditions.

SoFCB Junior Fellows Program

This year, ten Junior Fellows will be selected to join Rare Book School’s Andrew W. Mellon Society of Fellows in Critical Bibliography (SoFCB) through an open application process. After completing two years in good standing as Junior Fellows, participants will have the option to become Senior Fellows. The Junior and Senior Fellows form a thriving community of scholars working across disciplines to advance the study of texts, images, and artifacts as material objects. The SoFCB Junior Fellows Program welcomes applications from librarians, archivists, curators, doctoral students, independent scholars, and faculty members who hold tenure-track, teaching, or postdoctoral research positions.

The M. C. Lang Fellowship in Book History, Bibliography, and Humanities Teaching with Historical Sources

The M. C. Lang Fellowship is a two-year program designed to animate humanities teaching and equip educators (both library/curatorial staff and tenure or tenure-track faculty) to enlarge their students’ historical sensibilities through bibliographically informed instruction with original historical sources. Open to faculty and librarians at liberal arts colleges and small universities (i.e., 5,000 or fewer undergraduates) in the United States, this fellowship program aims to teach teachers how to discern and convey the human presences in original textual artifacts, and to inculcate wonder in their students through guided contact with original textual artifacts. Ten fellows will be selected this year.

RBS-UVA Fellowship Program

Rare Book School invites students at the University of Virginia to apply for a fellowship designed to enhance UVA student research employing special collections, including written, printed, and born-digital materials. The RBS-UVA Fellowship Program provides UVA undergraduate and graduate students with scholarships to attend RBS’s celebrated courses on the history of books and printing—classes that are not available through UVA course offerings.

RBS-UVA Presswork Fellowship Program

Rare Book School invites students at the University of Virginia to apply for a fellowship designed to share the history, craft, and technology of historical printing presses with the University community and broader publics. Receiving specialized training and instruction to print with unique historical printing presses, Presswork Fellows take on a teaching role themselves, helping to lead printing demonstrations for UVA classes and the general public as teaching assistants.

The Andrew W. Mellon Fellowship of Scholars in Critical Bibliography

In 2012, Rare Book School received a substantial grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to fund the Andrew W. Mellon Fellowship of Scholars in Critical Bibliography. The aim of this program was to reinvigorate bibliographical studies by providing focused training and mentorship for doctoral candidates, postdoctoral fellows, and junior faculty in the humanities. Fellowships included three years of support for RBS course attendance and research-related travel. [Please note, the Andrew W. Mellon Fellowship of Scholars in Critical Bibliography is no longer accepting new applicants.]

IMLS-RBS Fellowship Program

Rare Book School received a grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) through their Laura Bush 21st Century Librarian Program in March 2014. This grant funded a fellowship program to help educate and contribute to the professional development of early-career special collections librarians, with a special emphasis on recruiting participants currently underrepresented in the field. Fellowships included funding to take a course at Rare Book School as well as to attend the annual conference of the Rare Books and Manuscripts Section (RBMS) of the Association of College & Research Libraries, a division of the American Library Association. [Please note, the IMLS-RBS Fellowship Program is no longer accepting new applicants.]

RBS-RBMS Diversity Fellowship Program

Rare Book School (RBS) and the Rare Books and Manuscripts Section (RBMS) of the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL), a division of the American Library Association (ALA), are pleased to announce a new joint fellowship program, the RBS-RBMS Diversity Fellowships. Two fellowships will be awarded this year to early-career librarians from underrepresented racial or ethnic communities who demonstrate excellent potential for professional achievement. These awards will allow recipients to attend a course at RBS and to increase their professional involvement at the national level through participation in RBMS and attendance at its annual conference, held in Baltimore in June 2019. [Please note, the RBS-RBMS Fellowship Program is not accepting new applicants in 2019.]

RBS Fellowships

Rare Book School’s fellowship program began with the E. Ph. Goldschmidt Fellowship in 1995, followed in 1999 by the Reese Company and San Garde Fellowships, and in 2001 by the Ian Willison Fellowship. Applications for these four fellowships are by invitation only, but RBS has a generous general scholarship program.