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How to apply

Before starting the application process, review the Eligibility Criteria for participation in Summer Seminars and Institutes (pdf)

NEH Summer Institutes for College and University Teachers are offered by the National Endowment for the Humanities to provide college and university faculty members, independent scholars, and three graduate students with an opportunity to enrich and revitalize their understanding of significant humanities ideas, texts, and topics. These study opportunities are especially designed for this program and are not intended to duplicate courses normally offered by graduate programs. On completion of a seminar or institute, NEH Summer Scholars will receive a certificate indicating their participation.

Prior to completing an application to “Reconsidering Flannery O’Connor,” please review the Institute Co-Directors’ description of the Institute. Consider carefully what is expected in terms of residence and attendance, reading and writing requirements, and general participation in the work of the project.

Institutes are for 25 Summer Scholars, and provide intensive collaborative study of texts, topics, and ideas central to undergraduate teaching in the humanities under the guidance of faculties distinguished in their fields of scholarship. Institutes aim to prepare participants to return to their classrooms with a deeper knowledge of current scholarship in key fields of the humanities.

Please note: An individual may apply to up to two projects (NEH Summer Seminars, or NEH Summer Institutes), but may participate in only one.

Selection Criteria Application Instructions Detailed Description of Application Materials  

Selection Criteria 

A selection committee reads and evaluates all properly completed applications in order to select the most promising applicants and to identify a number of alternates. (Institute selection committees typically consist of three to five members, usually drawn from the institute faculty and staff members.)

The most important consideration in the selection of participants is the likelihood that an applicant will benefit professionally. This is determined by committee members from the conjunction of several factors, each of which should be addressed in the application essay. These factors include:

  1. quality and commitment as a teacher, scholar, and interpreter of the humanities;
  2. intellectual interests, in general and as they relate to the work of the institute;
  3. special perspectives, skills, or experiences that would contribute to the institute;
  4. commitment to participate fully in the formal and informal collegial life of the institute;
  5. the likelihood that the experience will enhance the applicant's teaching and scholarship.

Recent participants are eligible to apply, but selection committees are charged to give first consideration to applicants who have not participated in a NEH-supported Seminar, Institute or Landmarks Workshop in the last three years (2011, 2012, 2013). When choices must be made among equally qualified candidates, several additional factors are considered. Preference is given to applicants who have not previously participated in an NEH Summer Seminar, Institute, or Landmarks Workshop, or who significantly contribute to the diversity of the seminar or institute.

Application Instructions

Before attempting to complete an application, please study the project website, which contains detailed information about the topic under study, project requirements and expectations of the participants, the academic and institutional setting, and specific provisions for lodging and meals. All application materials must be sent to the project directors as instructed below. Application materials sent to the Endowment will not be reviewed.

Please remember that for an application to be considered you must first fill out and submit electronically an Application Cover Sheet. This Cover Sheet should then be saved or printed out so that it can be attached to the rest of your completed application.

Please submit your application for “Reconsidering Flannery O’Connor” electronically to this Institute’s e-mail address:  nehoconnor@gmail.com.

Applications must be dated no later than March 4, 2014.

If, for any reason, you are unable to submit your application electronically, you may instead submit two copies of the completed application, in hard copy and postmarked no later than March 4, 2014, to:

Marshall Bruce Gentry
English, Campus Box 44
Georgia College
Milledgeville, GA 31061


A complete application consists of the following collated items:

  1. The completed application cover sheet—one copy sent electronically to the NEH and one copy included in your application packet for the Co-Directors.
  2. A detailed résumé, curriculum vitae, or brief biography.  This MUST include the names and contact information for two individuals who may be contacted by the Institute Co-Directors to supply a recommendation for you.
  3. An application essay as outlined below. 

Detailed Description of Application Materials

The Application Cover Sheet

The application cover sheet must be filled out online at this address:


Please follow the prompts. Before you click the “submit” button, print out the cover sheet (or save it as a PDF file) and add it to your application package. Then click “submit.” At this point you will be asked if you want to fill out a cover sheet for another project. If you do, follow the prompts to select the other project and repeat the process.

Note that filling out a cover sheet is not the same as applying, so there is no penalty for changing your mind and filling out cover sheets for several projects. A full application consists of the items listed above, as sent to the project director. 

You must submit a separate cover sheet online for each project to which you are applying in order to generate a unique tracking number for each application. Do not copy and paste a new cover sheet.

 Résumé and References

Please include a detailed résumé, curriculum vitae, or brief biography (not to exceed five pages). Be sure the résumé provides the name, title, phone number, and e-mail address of two references.  These individuals may be contacted by the Institute Co-Directors to comment on your ability to succeed in a Summer Institute.  Do not send recommendations themselves as part of the application.

 The Application Essay

The application essay should be no more than four double spaced pages. This essay should include any relevant personal and academic information. It should address reasons for applying; the applicant's interest, both academic and personal, in the subject to be studied; qualifications and experiences that equip the applicant to do the work of the institute and to make a contribution to a learning community; a statement of what the applicant wants to accomplish by participating; and the relation of the project to the applicant's professional responsibilities.

Applicants to institutes may need to elaborate on the relationship between institute activities and their responsibilities for teaching and curricular development.


Remember, completed applications should be submitted to the project directors, as explained above, and not to the NEH, and should be postmarked no later than March 4, 2014.

Successful applicants will be notified by e-mail of their selection on Monday, March 31, 2014, and they will have until Friday, April 4 to accept or decline the offer.

Once you have accepted an offer to attend any NEH Summer Program (NEH Summer Seminar, Institute or Landmarks Workshop), you may not accept an additional offer or withdraw in order to accept a different offer.


Endowment programs do not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, disability or age. For further information, write to the Equal Opportunity Officer, National Endowment for the Humanities, 1100 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20506. TDD: 202/606-8282 (this is a special telephone device for the Deaf).

Reconsidering Flannery O'Connor 2014
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