Research Funding

The History Department has funds to support archival and field research in the United States and abroad. In recent years, History majors have utilized these funds to conduct research in China, Florida, England, Hungary, Singapore, and Texas. Three fellowships of varying award amounts are available to juniors and seniors: Hook, Tow, and Vapnek.


Lucyle Hook Travel Grants

The Lucyle Hook Travel Grants (endowed by an emerita Barnard faculty member) provide funding for travel related to research for the Barnard senior thesis. Candidates apply to the Faculty Committee on Honors, which typically awards four or five grants each year. The award amount varies, but normally ranges from $100-$500. Interested students should speak with Dean Runsdorf by early October of the senior year and obtain the Committee guidelines for application from him at that time. Decisions will be announced by mid-December. More information can be found on the Dean of Studies Website here:


Tow Fellowship Travel Grants

Tow Fellowships support travel related to research for the senior thesis. Candidates apply to the Committee on Honors (CoH) in the spring of their junior year to seek support for travel that will take place during the summer between their junior and senior years. The awards generally range from $1,000-$4,000. Interested students should see Dean Runsdorf during the fall semester of their junior year. More information can be found on the Dean of Studies Website here:


Bertha Vapnek Research Fellowship for Junior History Majors

This fellowship is intended for students currently in their junior year for thesis research conducted in the summer before their senior year. The student is required to work with a faculty member in the History department to develop a project that may be relevant to the student's intended senior thesis topic for the following year. Please note that the fellowship may meet part but not all of an awardee's request for funds, and funds may be distributed between two or more individuals.
Applications should include the following: 1. A brief description (two pages, maximum) of the proposed research project, which should describe both the significance of the project and the applicant's concrete plans for carrying it out; 2. A brief budget of projected expenses; 3. The name of a faculty member who has been consulted about the proposed project. Please check the History department’s website for due date of submission, and the faculty member in charge of administering the Vapnek funds as these vary from year to year.

Undergraduate Research Fellowship in European Archives
The History Department is delighted to announce that we will continue to be able to provide archival research opportunities for undergraduate History majors preparing senior theses on European history topics or on topics in other fields using sources from European archives. Thanks to the generous support of Dean Valentini of Columbia College, Linda Bell of Barnard, and the History Department Board of Visitors, we will be able to offer grants of $4,500 to seven rising seniors at Columbia College, Barnard, or GS to conduct four- to six-weeks of research in European archives.

This program is led by Professors Susan Pedersen and Charly Coleman and assisted by graduate student Noelle Turtur. The program includes supplemental workshops and mentoring activities throughout the year, a three-day workshop at the Columbia Global Center Europe in Paris in July, and collaboration with two Columbia faculty members at the Columbia Global Center Europe in Paris. In addition, Paul LeClerc, Director of the Global Center Europe, and Barbara Rockenbach, the director of the Humanities and History libraries at Columbia, and John Tofanelli, research librarian for the Anglo-American collections at Columbia, have generously agreed to assist the program by contributing their time and expertise. The program will also draw on the resources of Global Center Istanbul as well as an extensive network of contacts and collaborations throughout Europe. The grants will be approximately $4,500 and proposals are due Friday, March 24, 2016.

If you are interested in applying to the program, please contact Noelle Turtur ( We also encourage you to reach out to the librarians of the Columbia University Libraries, who are happy to help you identify sources and plan your research.  A list of librarians available for consultation in different fields can be found here.  In addition, you may find the Guide to British Archives and the Guide to European Archives useful for research purposes. More information, including the schedule and application form, can be found here.

President's Global Innovation Fund / 2017 Fellowship Recipients for Research in European Archives