New Fellowship Opportunity, Summer 2018

U.S. History Scene - UVA Andrew W. Mellon Fellowship in Indigenous Arts, Historical Writing, and Digital Curation
University of Virginia Library, Special Collections, University of Virginia Visual History Collection, prints00307

U.S. History Scene is excited to announce a new summer 2018 fellowship:


U.S. History Scene – UVA Andrew W. Mellon Fellowship

in Indigenous Arts, Historical Writing, and Digital Curation



Founded in 2011 by historians trained at Harvard University, U.S. History Scene is a multimedia history education website composed of historians and educators at over fifty universities dedicated to providing students and teachers with easy access to premier digital resources, live digital curriculum, and cutting-edge history scholarship. Our goal is to use innovative open source technology to democratize learning, narrow the achievement gap by helping history students realize their intellectual potential, and master United States history in a way that is relevant and intuitive. We bring you the best of the archives (without the dust!).

U.S. History Scene’s 10,000 edited internet pages of historical content and research has been cited by the New York Times, the Washington Post, The Atlantic,, GQ, Smithsonian Magazine, The St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Harvard University Press, California University Press, The Journal of African American History, Slate, The Daily Beast, Huffington Post, Clarity Films, PBS, CSPAN, MTV, Vice, Back Story Radio, The United States Census, The Gilder Lehrman Center for the Study of Slavery, Resistance, and Abolition at Yale; and an amicus brief to the Supreme Court of the United States.

In addition to providing resources for K-12 educators and students, students with different learning styles, and the general public, U.S. History Scene is invested in providing hands-on training in digital curation, digital history, public history, and writing and publishing for advanced undergraduate and graduate students.

The Mellon Indigenous Arts Initiative at the University of Virginia is a multi-year program dedicated to promoting and funding research on Indigenous arts of the Americas and Australia and providing object-based research opportunities for students from a broad range of backgrounds. With support from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the College and Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, and Provost’s Office of UVA, the program funds visiting artists and scholars, faculty research, and internship opportunities for students working with Indigenous art in its material and intangible forms.


How it works

Interns will gain valuable writing and publishing skills through the process of designing, writing, submitting, and editing archival-based original multimedia exhibits on underrepresented topics in the field or on indigenous arts of the Americas and Australia. Students’ work may include (but is not limited to) selecting images and objects for presentation and writing their respective labels, producing introductory research articles to compliment the exhibit, developing classroom lesson plans for teaching the objects, blog posts, and social media (twitter and instagram) posts to accompany the exhibit. The summer internship is an extension of your classroom research experiences, and a chance to build the professional skills necessary to work in academics, museums, public history and cultural heritage institutions.

All interns will work one-on-one with our Director of Internships and editorial board to gain experience researching art objects, in conceiving a digital exhibit, selecting objects/music (depending on the project), primary source research, editing, and publishing. Students will have to think carefully about intended audience, argument, exhibition layout, how to promote the online exhibition, and its possible relationship to the indigenous communities that made the artifacts. Internships can be performed via telecommute from your home university, and interns are expected to work a minimum of 300 hours this summer on their projects between 1 June 2018 and 17 August 2018.

The U.S. History Scene – UVA Andrew W. Mellon Fellow is also expected to attend the UVA Mellon museum practice workshops, held on Mondays in June and July 2018 at the Kluge-Ruhe Aboriginal Art Collection. These workshops will address object handling, exhibit design, and curatorial practice topics. A syllabus for preparing for the workshops will be distributed before your fellowship begins.

Your contact for the duration of the fellowship will be Dr. Stephanie Beck Cohen (

Weekly check-in: By the Sunday before each week of the fellowship term, you are responsible for submitting the weekly fellowship to-do form. This includes a summary of the research questions to be answered for your exhibit, the collections (archival or material) that you will be working with (and contact information for the repositories holding those collections), the secondary sources you will consult, and a two-sentence summary on what you hope to accomplish this week. We will also meet by phone, Skype, or Google Hangout mid-week to discuss how the project is going and to troubleshoot practical or intellectual problems.

Final Assessment: The final part of your fellowship is to complete and submit a two-page statement assessing your fellowship with U.S. History Scene. What did your final project look like, and how did you incorporate the skills you learned during the workshops and during your fellowship project? What professional skills did you feel developed most over the summer? Which skills do you feel still need more development? How would you characterize your interactions with the USHS staff and editorial faculty? How do you see your exhibit and associated materials being used by public audiences in the future?



This fellowship opportunity is open to current undergraduate students registered at the University of Virginia. (Students graduating in May 2018 are ineligible.)

Per the UVA – Mellon Indigenous Arts Program requirements, applicants must be:

  • Interested in Indigenous studies OR Students who identify as African American, Hispanic American, American Indian, Alaska Native, Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islanders, and/or individuals with disabilities.
  • Maintain a GPA of 3.5 or above
  • Be available for a minimum of 300 hours over the period of 1 June to 17 August 2018
  • Commit to attending the UVA MIAP workshops every Monday in June and July in Charlottesville


How to Apply

The stipend for this fellowship is supported by the Mellon Indigenous Arts Program. This fellowship is available for either the Internship grant for underrepresented students, or the Indigenous Studies grant. Please see the UVA MIAP website for instructions on applying to these grants: or contact Amanda Wagstaff,

This fellowship carries a stipend of $3500.00 for the period 1 June – 17 August, 2018.

The deadline for this fellowship is April 10, 2018.