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Research Fellowships

Smith College Special Collections, which includes the Sophia Smith Collection, Smith College Archives, and the Mortimer Rare Book Collection, is pleased to offer a research support program of fellowships and awards.

Grants for Smith Students and Faculty

Rebecca Samay Rosenthal ‘07 Fellowship (Smith Students)

The Rosenthal Fellowship is named in honor of Rebecca (Becca) Rosenthal, former student worker in the Mortimer Rare Book Collection. Passionate about archival work, she was in the process of earning a graduate degree from Simmons Graduate School of Library and Information Science before her untimely death in 2012. This fellowship supports current Smith student internships and capstone research in the Archives and Book Studies Concentrations only. The award for an internship is up to $1,500 and for a capstone project up to $1,000. Rosenthal Fellowship proposals should be submitted by email to the Director of Special Collections, Beth Myers: The application review period is open.

Internships: Interns must complete a 100-hour internship for work related to their Archives and Book Studies Concentrations. Applicants may work 10 hours per week for one semester, 5 hours per week for two semesters, or 35 hours per week for 3 weeks during the January term or summer. Applications should include:

  • A one-page description of the on-campus or off-campus internship, including internship goals,
  • A brief schedule of work,
  • A completed Archives Concentration Practical Experience Approval Form or Book Studies Concentration Approval Form,
  • The deadline for applications is open. Applications are reviewed on an ongoing basis.

Capstone Projects: Applications should include:

  • A project title and a description of the capstone project,
  • A budget reflecting any anticipated travel expenses; be as specific as possible. 

Grants for Researchers

Smith College Special Collections offer four extended-term fellowships:

The Margaret Storrs Grierson Fellowship is named in honor of the founding Director of the Sophia Smith Collection, and former College Archivist and Executive Secretary of the Friends of the Smith College Library.

The Friends of the Smith College Libraries Fellowship is generously supported by the Friends of the Smith College Libraries in support of research across the collections.

The Ruth Mortimer Fellowship is named in honor of Ruth Mortimer, class of 1953, the distinguished curator of rare books at Smith College from 1975-1994.

The Carel B. Germain Fellowship is named in honor of long time archives supporter Carel B. Germain, Professor of social work, author, and theorist in the field.

Successful applicants will receive awards of $2,500, intended to support research visits of a minimum of four weeks. Recipients are expected to present an informal work-in-progress colloquium to the Smith College community during their residency.

Special Collections also offers several short-term Madeleine L’Engle Travel Research Fellowships, named in honor of Madeleine L’Engle, class of 1941, renowned young adult fiction author. These fellowship are intended to help offset the travel expenses of researchers engaged in studies that will benefit from access to, including initial survey and exploration of, the holdings of Smith College Special Collections. L’Engle Fellowships will be funded up to $1,000.

Researchers should apply if they live more than 50 miles from Northampton, MA, and whose research interests and objectives would be significantly advanced by extended work in the holdings of Special Collections. Fellowships support research in any or all of Special Collections’ three repositories: College Archives, the Mortimer Rare Book Collection, and the Sophia Smith Collection of Women’s History. These grants do not cover research-related costs, e.g., reproduction fees. Only one application is required for all fellowships.

Application deadline is February 17, 2020. Awards will be announced April 24, 2020.

APPLY HERE if you have a Google account. If you do not have a Google account, follow the directions on the Travel Fellowship Application Document. Hard-copy application materials will not be accepted. Please send any inquiries to or 413-585-2970.

Special Collections is also a partner in the New England Research Fellowships Consortium (NERFC), which offers 8-week, $5,000 stipends to applicants whose research takes them to three or more of its member institutions. Applications are due February 1, 2019. NERFC grants are managed by the consortium and so for more information visit NERFC.