Call for Applications: 2015 Library Special Collections Short-term Research Fellowships

The UCLA Library Special Collections Short-term Research Fellowships Program supports the use of special collections materials by visiting scholars and UCLA graduate students. Collections that are administered by UCLA Library Special Collections and available for fellowship-supported research include materials in the humanities and social sciences, medicine, life and physical sciences, visual and performing arts, and UCLA history.


James and Sylvia Thayer Short-term Research Fellowships
Thayer fellowships provide support for research in any collections administered by UCLA Library Special Collections. Stipends range from $500 to $2,500 and vary yearly; grants in 2013 averaged $1,710 and in 2014 averaged $1,530. Awards are funded by an endowment established by longtime UCLA benefactors James and Sylvia Thayer.

Barbara Rootenberg Library Research Fellowship in the History of Medicine and the Life Sciences
The Rootenberg fellowship promotes the use of materials in History & Special Collections for the Sciences in UCLA Library Special Collections. One annual fellowship is awarded in the amount of $1,000. The award is named for Barbara Rootenberg, an alumna of the UCLA School of Library Service and an internationally-renowned antiquarian bookseller.

Ahmanson Research Fellowships for the Study of Medieval and Renaissance Manuscripts and Books
Ahmanson Fellowships support the use of medieval and Renaissance monographic and manuscript holdings in UCLA Library Special Collections: the Ahmanson-Murphy Collection of the Aldine Press; the Ahmanson-Murphy Collection of Early Italian Printing; the Elmer Belt Library of Vinciana; the Orsini Family Papers; the Medieval and Renaissance Manuscripts Collection; the Richard and Mary Rouse Collection of Medieval and Renaissance Manuscripts and Early Printed Books; and the Medieval and Renaissance Arabic and Persian Medical Manuscripts. The fellowships provide $2,500 per month for up to three months. Administered by the UCLA Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies, this program requires an application separate from that for Thayer and Rootenberg fellowships; information is available on the Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies website.


Thayer and Rootenberg Fellowships:  United States citizens and permanent residents with the legal right to work in the U.S. who are engaged in graduate-level, post-doctoral, or independent research are invited to apply. Research residencies may last up to three months between February 1 and December 11, 2015.

Ahmanson Fellowships:  United States and international graduate students or scholars holding a PhD (or the foreign equivalent) who are engaged in graduate-level, postdoctoral, or independent research are invited to apply. Research residencies may last up to three months between July 1, 2015 and June 30, 2016.


Researchers can submit a single application for “Short-term Research Fellowships” in order to be considered for either the Thayer or Rootenberg fellowships. Applications must be received on or before October 31, 2014.

Applications must include:

  • Cover letter
  • Curriculum vitae
  • Outline of research topic and special collections to be used (two pages maximum)
  • Brief budget for travel, living, and research expenses
  • Dates to be spent in residence
  • Two letters of recommendation from faculty or other scholars familiar with the research project. Please note that the committee cannot consider letters of recommendation from the librarians or staff of the UCLA Library.


Application materials, including letters of recommendation, may be submitted in PDF format by email to  Letters of recommendation in PDF format can also be sent by email, either by the person writing them or by the applicant.


A committee will evaluate the research proposals, and applicants will be notified of the the committee’s decision by email on or before January 15, 2015.

Fellows may be asked to speak briefly about their recent or ongoing research at an informal brownbag session with local scholars during their visit.


Submit print format applications, or direct questions about fellowships, to:

Short-Term Research Fellowships Program
UCLA Library Special Collections
A1713 Charles E. Young Research Library
Box 951575
Los Angeles, CA 90095-1575
Phone:  310.825.6940


Russell Johnson
LSC Fellowships Committee Chair
UCLA Library Special Collections

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