Creative Study Fellowship Awards - The HistoryMakers

Dionti Davis's picture
March 1, 2019
United States
Subject Fields: 
Fine Arts, Film and Film History, Theatre & Performance History / Studies, Composition & Rhetoric


The HistoryMakers – the nation’s largest African American video oral history archive – invites proposals for one of two $5,000 Creative Study Fellowship awards created from funding from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, for the period of Summer 2019 (April–August 2019). Submission is open to both established and emerging artists (faculty and students) at all stages of their careers. Applicants work must come out of their use of, and/or be inspired by, content from The HistoryMakers Digital Archive.

The HistoryMakers Creative Study Fellowship awards will be awarded to composers, choreographers, performance artists, visual artists, writers or other kinds of artists or humanists working in prose (fiction and creative nonfiction), performance (theatrical productions, documentaries, monologues) and poetry, to enable recipients to set aside time for writing; provide research, travel, and project support; as well as general career advancement. The fellowship awards are expected to culminate in the realization of the proposed work, as well as its presentation. Finished products generated by awardees will be featured on The HistoryMakers website, and will compete for inclusion in The HistoryMakers 20th Anniversary Celebration at the Library of Congress (November 6-7, 2020).



Applicants must be currently enrolled students or faculty members at one of The HistoryMakers subscribing institutions (see below). Applicants must be either U.S. citizens or unconditional permanent residents. Applicants need not have special expertise in African American history.

College & University Institutional Subscribers: American University ● Arkansas State University ● Boston University ● Brandeis University ● Cambridge College ● Carleton College ● Carnegie Mellon University ● Case Western Reserve University ● Columbia University ● Cornell University ● Dominican University ● Duke University ● Eastern Kentucky University ● Emory University ● Harvard University ● Howard University ● Johnson C. Smith University ● Lesley University ● Michigan State University ● Morgan State University ● New York University ● Northeastern University ● Northwestern University ● Ohio State University ● Princeton University ● Rutgers University ● Savannah State University ● Simmons College ● Smith College ● Southeast Missouri State University ● Stanford University ● Texas Southern University ● The College of William and Mary ● United States Air Force Academy ● University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff ● University of Chicago ● University of Alaska, Anchorage ● University of Arkansas ● University of Illinois, Chicago ● University of Massachusetts, Amherst ● University of Massachusetts, Boston ● University of Michigan ● University of Oregon ● University of Pennsylvania ● University of Richmond ● University of Virginia ● University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee ● Vanderbilt University ● Virginia Commonwealth University ● Washington University in St. Louis ● Yale University


Judging Criteria

  • The degree with which The HistoryMakers Digital Archive or content is incorporated, and connected with other primary sources.
  • The creativity and uniqueness demonstrated in the proposed work’s conception and design
  • The feasibility of the project and the likelihood that the applicant will execute the work within the proposed time frame (and) or funding.
  • Alignment with The HistoryMakers mission to educate the world about African American life, history, and culture.
  • The quality and skill of the proposed work and its presentation/implementation.
  • The proposed work’s potential for interdisciplinary study or collaboration
  • The applicant’s artistic portfolio/published or exhibited works

Award Amount:


Fellowship Duration:

April 2019 – September 2019

Application Deadline

Friday, March 1, 2019

Application Procedure:

Please submit a letter of intent listing all participants, a brief cv/resume for all participants (3 pages or less), as well as a proposal narrative and budget (3-5 pages), detailing the following:

  1. What is the title of your project?
  2. Please provide a description of your proposed project.
  3. What is your overall goal and how does it relate to The HistoryMakers content?
  4. Please describe the degree that The HistoryMakers Digital Archive will be incorporated in your proposed work? 
  5. Please describe how your project is creative and/or unique use in its conception or design. 
  6. Please describe how your project is aligned with The HistoryMakers mission to educate the world about African American life, history, and culture?
  7. Please provide itemized budget information, detailing how much money you are allocating to each specified task.

              **Note: Funds are not restricted in their use, but all funds MUST be exhausted by the end of the fellowship period [August 31, 2019],                     unless they have been allocated to conference travel/registration fees.

  1. Please provide work samples/portfolio (i.e., writing sample, images of your work, video links to performances, etc.).
Contact Info: 

Dionti Davis, Education Coordinator | (312) 674-1900

Contact Email: