Visiting Researcher Fellowships


Fellowship awards overview

The Visiting Researcher Fellowships provide short-term research fellowships to support intensive, innovative, and impactful research and artistic use of its collections. This fellowship was previously known as the Summer Visiting Research Fellowship.
  • Eligible researchers:
    • Advanced graduate students
    • Faculty
    • Independent scholars
    • Established performing and creative artists
  • Supports research in the following categories:
    • American culture, politics, and social changes from 1960 to 1975
    • African American life, culture, and history
    • Women in the American South
    • Literary culture and traditions of the American South
    • Banking and business in the American South
    • North Carolina
    • Antebellum America
    • The history of medicine
    • Oral histories
  • Short-term fellowship of at least 10 days
  • Total award is $1,250
View past recipients and their research:

Fellowship eligibility

  • Have or be actively pursuing the terminal degree in your discipline, OR
  • Be an established performing or creative artist
    • In this case the terminal degree requirement may be waived
  • Agree to:
    • Submit a research proposal and research plan that draws deeply and substantively on the collections of the Wilson Special Collections Library
    • Commit to a full-time research residency of at least ten days at Wilson Library
      • Research cannot begin until the completion of a background check
      • The residency must be completed during our research season: 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
Doctoral students and candidates studying the American South who can commit to a research residency of one month should consider applying for a Southern Studies Doctoral Fellowship.

Application instructions

Application materials will be accepted on a rolling basis. Applications submitted by midnight ET on January 31 will be given priority. We will continue to accept applications until May 1 for UNC-Chapel Hill students and researchers and March 15 for students and researchers outside of UNC-Chapel Hill.

Submit applications electronically via Interfolio using the Visiting Researcher 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 resources that you will consult during your residency. Include brief annotations about the relevancy of each collection
  • Curriculum Vitae
  • Two confidential letters of recommendation
Applications will be evaluated based on the following criteria:
  • Merit of the proposal
  • Applicant’s qualifications and 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.


  • December 1: Applications open for electronic submissions via Interfolio
  • January 31: Application materials received by midnight ET will be given priority. We will continue to accept applications on a rolling basis past this date
  • Submission deadlines:
    • March 15: deadline to submit applications for students and researchers enrolled at universities outside of UNC-Chapel Hill
    • May 1: deadline to submit applications for UNC-Chapel Hill students and researchers
  • Acceptance deadlines:
    • Preliminary acceptance of award must occur within 7 calendar days of the email’s receipt
    • Accepting applicants must return all required documentation and biographical information 14 calendar days of the email’s receipt
    • Research cannot begin until the completion of a background check
  • June 1: Opening of research season
    • Research reports are due one month after completing the research residency
  • May 31 of following year: Close of research season. Research residencies must be completed

Awarding of funds

Fellowship awards are disbursed after the completion of the residency. It is strongly recommended that fellows arrive with the funds necessary to support their research visit.

Questions about the fellowships program or application instructions should be directed to Matt Turi via