In partnership with the National Park Service, the National Park Foundation supports a public humanities fellowship program for postdocs, thanks to the generous funding of The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

The National Park Service Mellon Humanities Fellowships support national parks with scholarship related to labor history and productivity, the legacy of the civil rights movement, and gender and sexuality equality. Each fellow collaborates with a faculty mentor from partner academic institutions, including Morgan State University and University of Washington, bringing fresh expertise in the public humanities field.

The fellows work with National Park Service staff to create interpretive and educational resources based on their scholarly research. Examples include visitor center exhibitions, lesson plans, audience-centered dialogues, social-media campaigns, and innovative digital projects. The fellows also collaborate to offer trainings and online seminars to National Park Service staff nationwide.

The work of the National Park Service Mellon Humanities Fellows helps to enhance, expand, and deepen storytelling at national parks across the country.

Learn more about the current National Park Service Mellon Humanities Fellows here.

Meet the Fellows

Headshot of Dr. Mia L. Carey

Dr. Mia Carey

Dr. Mia Carey’s research equips NPS staff with training and skills to teach visitors about African American history and the legacy of the Civil Rights Movement. Her guide for parks is tentatively entitled, We’re Still Marching: A Guide for Civil Rights Interpretation and Community Building. “I believe that all 419 parks have a civil rights story,” notes Carey. “The lasting legacy that I want to leave for the National Park Service and our visitors is that the American parks are for all of us, not just for some of us.”

Headshot of Dr. Sylvea Hollis

Dr. Sylvea Hollis

As part of her scholarship, Dr. Sylvea Hollis traveled to Charleston, South Carolina, to meet with members of the Association for the Study of African American History and Life, where she engaged NPS superintendents, interpreters, and volunteers in discussions of gender and sexuality history, particularly during the Reconstruction Era. She explored the complex legacies of masculinity, especially Black male troops during the Civil War, and why it’s important to look at historical moments like these through the lens of gender.

Headshot of Dr. Eleanor Mahoney

Dr. Eleanor Mahoney

Dr. Eleanor Mahoney supported César E. Chávez National Monument by creating a database of source material on farm workers, United Farm Workers, the Chicano/a movement, and César E. Chávez, among other topics. This database helps park staff and partners answer questions from the public and form a foundation for educational programs. In addition, Mahoney worked with NPS staff at Pullman National Monument to develop exhibits for the site’s new visitor center. "Labor history is a universal story. Ask anyone if they've had a job, if they've worked, and the answer is going to be yes," she explained.

Headshot of Dr. Emma Silverman

Dr. Emma Silverman

Dr. Emma Silverman is an art historian whose research examines the politics of monuments and memory. In the leadup to the 250th Commemoration of the American Revolution Dr. Silverman is developing a series of public talks and an ArcGIS Story Map, which will relate the histories of Revolutionary War monuments located in National Parks to contemporary debates over public culture.