Rare Book Collection Fellowships

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Fellowship awards overview

The Rare Book Collection Fellowships support scholarly research that makes significant use of the rich and deep rare book resources available in the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s special collections. Three types of awards are available:
  • The Marjorie Bond Research Fellowship
    • For the broader community of doctoral students and candidates, faculty, and independent scholars whose research projects draw deeply and substantively on the Wilson Library’s Rare Book Collection
    • Supports a one-, two-, or three-month residency which must take place during our research year: June 1 of the year awarded to May 31 of the following spring. The length of the residency depends upon demonstrated need to consult Rare Book Collection materials
    • Award is $3,000 per month
  • The Hanes Graduate Fellowship 
    • For UNC Chapel Hill master’s and doctoral students working on a thesis or dissertation that significantly relies upon Rare Book Collection materials
    • Supports a one-, two-, or three-month residency which must take place during our research year: June 1 of the year awarded to May 31 of the following spring. The length of the residency depends upon demonstrated need to consult Rare Book Collection materials
    • Award is $3,000 per month
  • The McLendon-Thomas Award
    • For the broader community of master’s and doctoral students whose research projects focus on the history of medicine and draw deeply and substantively on the Wilson Library’s Rare Book Collection
    • Supports a one-, two-, or three-month residency which must take place during our research year: June 1 of the year awarded to May 31 of the following spring. The length of the residency depends upon demonstrated need to consult Rare Book Collection materials
    • Award is $3,000 per month
View past recipients and their research:

Fellowship eligibility

The Bond Fellowship
  • Scholarly researchers
    • Doctoral student or candidate
    • Faculty
    • Independent scholar
  • Have or be actively pursuing the terminal degree in your discipline
The Hanes Fellowship
  • Full-time master’s or doctoral students
  • Enrolled in a graduate program in the College of Arts and Sciences at UNC-Chapel Hill
  • Currently working on a thesis or dissertation project
The McLendon-Thomas Award 
  • Full-time master’s or doctoral students
  • Enrolled in a graduate program
  • Currently working on a thesis or dissertation project on the history of medicine
Agree to
  • Submit a research proposal and research plan that draws deeply and substantively on the Rare Book Collection
  • Commit to a full-time research residency at Wilson Library for the duration of the award
    • The residency must take place during our research year: June 1 of the year awarded to May 31 of the following spring
  • Participate in the intellectual life of the Library and the fellowship program, which includes:
    • A public presentation of research findings and experiences
    • The submission of a brief research report
    • For the McLendon-Thomas Award, a presentation at the Bullitt History of Medicine Club lecture series

Application instructions

All application materials are due by midnight ET on January 31. Submit them electronically via Interfolio using the Rare Book Collection Fellowships Application.

The online application requires the submission of the following supporting materials:
  • Research Proposal: A brief narrative (no more than 1200 words) that describes your proposed research and its intellectual significance
  • Research Plan: A substantive preliminary list of Wilson Library Rare Book Collection materials that you will consult during your residency. Include brief annotations concerning the relevancy of each collection
  • Curriculum vitae
  • Two confidential letters of recommendation.  For graduate students, one letter must be from your academic advisor
  • For graduate students, a letter from the Director of Graduate Studies confirming your current academic status
Applications will be evaluated based on the following criteria:
  • Merit of the proposal
  • Applicant’s qualifications and letters of recommendations
  • Demonstrated need to access in person the holdings of the Wilson Special Collections Library
See the Wilson Library Research Fellowships Guidelines for more details on applying for a fellowship, accepting a fellowship, and planning your residency.

Timeline

  • December 1: Applications open for electronic submissions via Interfolio
  • January 31: All application materials must be received by midnight ET
  • March 31: Successful applicants are notified by email
    • Preliminary acceptance of award must occur within 7 calendar days of the email’s receipt
  • April 15: Accepting applicants must return all required documentation and biographical information by midnight ET
  • May 31: Submit residency dates
  • June 1: Opening of research year
    • Research reports are due one month after completing the research residency.
  • May 31: Close of research year

Awarding of funds

Fellowship awards are disbursed after the completion of a fellowship residency.  It is strongly recommended that fellows arrive with the funds necessary to support their research visit. These Fellowships are generously supported by the Marjorie Bond and Hanes Family Funds and the Bullitt Club Founder’s Endowment Fund. Questions about the fellowships program or application instructions should be directed to Matt Turi via wilsonlibrary@unc.edu.