Graduate Student Research Fellowship

2023-2024 Graduate Student Research Fellowship

Applications due May 1, 2023.
The Schoenberg Institute for Manuscript Studies (SIMS) is accepting applications for its 2023-2024 Graduate Student Research Fellowship. The fellowship has been established to encourage emerging scholars to engage with the rich physical and digital manuscript resources at the University of Pennsylvania Libraries, including the Lawrence J. Schoenberg Collection and the Schoenberg Database of Manuscripts. Working closely with SIMS staff members, the fellow will have the opportunity to develop a project and gain experience working in a collaborative, digital humanities environment. The fellow will be expected to present his or her research at Penn Libraries either during the term of the fellowship or on a selected date following the completion of the term.

The fellow may undertake research on any aspect of the collections of premodern manuscripts in the Penn Libraries. Research proposals are invited from any area of global manuscript studies, including but not limited to the study of the material text, scripts, decoration and illustration, paleography, codicology, binding, provenance, and the history of libraries and collecting. Proposals should demonstrate that the Libraries’ premodern manuscript resources are integral to proposed research topics. Proposals with a digital component are encouraged though not required.

The fellow will receive a total stipend of $7200 to be dispersed over a nine-month period beginning  September 1, 2023, through May 31, 2024. During this time the fellow will be expected to spend 10 hours/week at the Schoenberg Institute for Manuscript Studies at Penn Libraries and attend regular meetings with SIMS staff. Precise beginning and end dates and a weekly schedule will be determined in consultation with the fellow upon appointment.

The fellowship is available to all graduate students attending universities in the greater Philadelphia area during the 2023-2024 academic term. International students at these institutions are welcome to apply but must be work eligible according to their visa terms and have approval from their host institution.

Application Process
To be considered, applicants must submit the following by Monday, May 1, 2023:

  • 2-3 page statement describing 1) the research project and how it relates to SIMS manuscript and/or digital collections, 2) a 9-month workplan, and 3) an explanation of how the fellowship relates to the applicant’s research focus and career goals.
  • CV
  • A letter from the applicant’s Graduate Chair confirming departmental support of the graduate student’s application.
  • Two letters of recommendation, including one from the student’s advisor and another from an established scholar in the graduate student’s field with expertise relating to manuscript studies.

Applications should be sent by email to, preferably as a single pdf, or by post to the below address. Letters of recommendation should be submitted separately by email or by post.

Lynn Ransom
Curator, SIMS Programs
Schoenberg Institute for Manuscript Studies
University of Pennsylvania Libraries
3420 Walnut St
Philadelphia, PA 19104

All application materials must be received by May 1, 2023, to be considered. Decisions can be expected no later than May 15, 2023. Please direct questions to the above contact.