Humanities Futures Labs Graduate Fellowship

Applications Due:
Friday, May 13, 2022 at 11:59 p.m. CT

The Mellon Environmental Stewardship, Place, and Community Initiative (MESPAC) is seeking interested graduate students to participate in a cohort of faculty and graduate students designing curriculum. With three to four faculty, the four to six Graduate Fellows will design a humanities course focused on Indigenous epistemologies and environmental stewardship and will mentor undergraduate students who enroll in the subsequent course(s). The course will be a one-credit, half-semester course, divided into two parts: classroom and themed, engaged humanities “labs.” The course will be offered three to four times in 2022–23, during the semester and/or May Term; each graduate fellow will participate in co-teaching the course once. Funded by the Mellon Foundation, this project is a three-campus initiative that prioritizes integration of Indigenous epistemologies and concepts of environmental stewardship in the humanities. 

The Humanities Futures Labs graduate fellowships involve two components: designing humanities labs in May–June 2022, and co-teaching one of the courses with labs during the 2022–2023 academic year. 


Graduate Fellows will receive the following benefits:

  • A $5,000 fellowship, divided as follows: $3,000 for the May Term 2022 design work and $2,000 for the 2022–2023 co-teaching and lab mentoring. This will not conflict with a regular TA or RAship.
  • Professional experience developing creative pedagogies such as Humanities Labs and humanities curriculum integrating diverse ways of knowing and centering underrepresented perspectives; experience mentoring undergraduates. 
  • Professional development opportunities including workshops on incorporating engaged research and practice into humanities curricula, and preparing applications for small liberal arts college teaching positions.
  • Mentorship from faculty across three campuses.
  • Connection to the community of scholars and community partners connected to the Mellon Environmental Stewardship, Place, and Community Initiative.


May–June 2022

Graduate student fellows will meet with faculty members from the University of Minnesota Twin Cities, Morris, and Duluth to design a humanities lab course in May 2022. The cohort will meet 4 hours daily online from May 31st–June 10. The first week will be dedicated to collaboration and creating a shared context with which to approach course design; to do this, the cohort will read and discuss a series of resources on Indigenous methodologies, environmental challenges, and humanities lab pedagogies. In the second week, the cohort will break into smaller groups to design specific labs and, where appropriate, connect with community partners. Format and mode (in-person, virtual, or hybrid) for this second week will be determined by the cohort of graduate students and faculty.


Academic Year 2022-2023

During the school year, these lab courses will be offered as a 1-credit, once a week half- term course; during May Term, the lab course will meet over a two-week period. The courses will be open to undergraduates from the Duluth, Morris, and Twin Cities campuses and other regional colleges. Graduate fellows will be mentors for undergraduates participating in the variety of labs. In addition to participating in course meetings, graduate students will participate in and guide students in their lab projects, culminating in presentations of their work in a capstone symposium in April or May 2023.



If you have any questions, please contact [email protected].