Richard and Jeannette Sias Graduate Fellowship in the Humanities – Application Instructions

Deadline: Monday, October 30, 2023 11:59pm


The Richard and Jeannette Sias Graduate Fellowships in the Humanities provide two KU humanities doctoral students with one semester each of financial support to focus entirely on their dissertations. These fellowships also expand the Fellows' experiences beyond a single disciplinary focus by providing the opportunity for interaction with the Hall Center's interdisciplinary cohort of faculty and public fellows. The program seeks well-rounded students who demonstrate the ability to make outstanding contributions in their chosen humanities disciplines and who can indicate in the application materials that a semester dedicated solely to writing will result in substantial progress on the dissertation project. Graduate fellows are expected to attend regular seminars throughout the academic year of residency at which faculty and graduate student fellows will discuss their pre-circulated work-in-progress. Each resident fellow also gives a public talk about their work during residency and the other fellows are expected to attend these events.

Fellows will receive a $9,000 stipend, up to $500 in reimbursement for project-related expenses they incur during the fellowship year, and an office in the Hall Center during the semester of residency. In addition, the Office of Graduate Studies will pay their tuition for one semester, and a graduate research appointment, which includes a subsidy for health insurance.

Applications from the Arts and Social Sciences are welcome, but applicants must demonstrate the ways in which their project utilizes themes and methodologies from the humanities.

DEADLINE:  Monday, October 30, 2023 at 11:59PM


Eligible applicants will:

1. Be a KU doctoral student working on a humanities-oriented research or creative project. Applicants must have completed all departmental and graduate school requirements, including the approval of the dissertation proposal or prospectus, by the end of the academic year in which they are applying;

2. Be engaged in dissertation writing and be in residence in the Hall Center during the fellowship period (Fall 2024 or Spring 2025);

3. Demonstrate that a semester residency will result in significant progress on the dissertation project;

4. Demonstrate a high level of motivation, including the ability to establish and achieve goals.


Sias Graduate Fellows are required to:

1. Devote full-time effort to the dissertation during the semester of the fellowship;

2. Hold no other paid position at the University of Kansas or elsewhere during the semester of the fellowship;

3. Maintain a regular presence in their Hall Center office throughout the entire residency semester;

4. Attend regular seminars throughout the academic year of residency at which resident faculty and graduate student fellows will discuss their pre-circulated work-in-progress;

5. Give a public talk about their work during residency, and attend the public talks given by the other resident fellows;

6. Submit a brief report describing the work accomplished and its impact on the overall project. The report is due no later than four weeks immediately following completion of the fellowship year. Failure to comply with this requirement will make the fellow ineligible for future funding from the Hall Center.


All application materials must be submitted through the Hall Center Competitions Portal.  Paper submissions will not be accepted.  For an application to be verified as complete, and thus forwarded for committee review, applicants must:

1. Create an account or log in to an existing account.

2. Select the Apply Now button next to this competition. 

3. Complete the Applicant Information form in the Portal. This form includes choosing a semester of residence. While the Hall Center will try to honor the applicant's semester of choice, we cannot guarantee that all fellows will receive their preferred semester. Fellows should be prepared to be flexible regarding the semester of residency when at all possible.

NOTE: The demographic questions in the application form are optional. We would appreciate your responses as they allow us to chart demographic data and better comprehend the communities we reach and serve through this competition and award program. This information will not be used for determining awards. 

4. Upload the following materials as 4 separate PDF files:

a. Curriculum Vitae, not to exceed two pages

b. Project Description not to exceed four double-spaced pages, with one-inch margins and twelve-point type. Describe your dissertation project and the contribution it will make to your field and to the humanities in general. Provide a brief outline of your dissertation including what has been undertaken and what awaits completion. Include a plan of work for the fellowship period, describing what you intend to complete during the semester fellowship period and how that represents significant progress on the dissertation overall, as well as your plans for pursuing external funding related to this project. Please indicate if you prefer a Fall or Spring semester residency (although the Hall Center cannot guarantee you will be offered your preferred semester).

c. Bibliography not to exceed 2 pages, singled-spaced.

d. Degree Progress Report

1. Log in to the myKU Portal with your KU Online ID and password.

2. Click the My Progress link from the left menu.

3. Select the Progress tab in the upper right-hand corner of the student information window.

4. Click "Generate Report." 

5. In Your Progress Tab, there is a "Checklist" Tab to the right of each DPR link.  Click the Checklist Tab, and save as a PDF.  This is the document you should submit with your application.

No extraneous materials will be considered.


The Hall Center Director appoints an interdisciplinary panel of KU faculty with successful grant and publishing track records to select awardees.  All applicants can access feedback from the selection committee via the online competition portal following the conclusion of the competition.  


1. Interdisciplinary nature of the dissertation project and the quality of the conception, definition, and organization of the project as presented in the proposal;

2. Significance of the contribution that the completed dissertation will make to thought and knowledge in the pertinent genre, tradition, or field, and to the humanities generally; 

3. Thoughtfulness of plans to apply for external funding in order to advance the project during and after the fellowship; and

4. Likelihood that the applicant will make significant progress on some aspect related to the writing of the dissertation during the semester the fellowship is held.

5. Potential connections with the projects of other resident fellows, to foster productive engagement during residency. (The key words or phrases capturing the topics addressed in the applicant's research project, provided by the applicant, will assist the selection committee in this process.)


Applicants should direct questions about the Richard and Jeannette Sias Graduate Fellowships in the Humanities to Assistant Director Andrew Hodgson (