How to Apply

Note: This page reflects the application instructions for our 2017 seminar. We have not yet updated external links or other criteria. We will do so after the project directors' meeting. 

Eligibility and Selection Criteria

Please review the eligibility criteria for participation in Summer Seminars and Institutes here.

Summer Seminars and Institutes for School Teachers are offered by the National Endowment for the Humanities to provide teachers an opportunity for substantive study of significant humanities ideas and texts. These study opportunities are especially designed for this program and are not intended to duplicate courses normally offered by graduate programs. On completion of an NEH Summer Seminar or Institute, NEH Summer Scholars will receive a certificate indicating their participation.

Prior to completing an application to Re-enchanting Nature: Humanities Perspectives, please review the project website and consider carefully what is expected in terms of residence and attendance, reading and writing requirements, and general participation in the work of the project.

A selection committee will read and evaluate all properly completed applications in order to select the most promising applicants and to identify a number of alternates. Seminar selection committees typically consist of the seminar directors, a school teacher who is usually a participant in a previous NEH summer program, and a colleague of the directors.  

Special consideration is given to the likelihood that an applicant will benefit professionally and personally from the seminar experience.  It is important, therefore, to address each of the following factors in your application essay:

  1. your effectiveness and commitment as a teacher/educator;
  2. your intellectual interests, in general, and as they relate to the work of this seminar;
  3. your special perspectives, skills, or experiences that would contribute to this seminar
  4. the likelihood that the experience will enhance your teaching.

While recent participants are eligible to apply, selection committees are charged to give first consideration to applicants who have not participated in an NEH-supported seminar, institute, or workshop in the last three years (2014, 2015, 2016). Additionally, preference is given to applicants who would significantly contribute to the diversity of the program. We are also particularly interested in applicants who desire collaboration between the humanities and STEM fields.  


Application Instructions

A complete application consists of the following items:

  • the completed application cover sheet,
  • a résumé or brief biography with contact information for two professional references, and
  • an application essay as outlined below.

The Application Cover Sheet

The application cover sheet must be filled out online here.

Please follow the prompts. Before you click the “submit” button, print out the cover sheet 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.

Do not use the same cover sheet for different projects. 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.


Résumé and References

Please include a résumé or brief biography detailing your educational qualifications and professional experience. Be sure the résumé provides the name, title, phone number, and e-mail address of two professional references.


The Application Essay

The application essay should be no more than four double‑spaced pages.  It should address your interest, both academic and personal, in the subject to be studied; qualifications and experiences that equip you to do the work of the seminar or institute and to make a contribution to a learning community; a statement of what you want to accomplish by participating; and the relation of the project to the applicant's professional responsibilities.


Submission of Applications and Notification Procedure

Completed applications should be submitted electronically as PDF files no later than 11:59 PM on March 1, 2017.  Send your application to the project directors at

Application materials sent to the NEH will not be reviewed.

Successful applicants will be notified of their selection on Friday, March 31, 2017, and they will have until Friday, April 7 to accept or decline the offer.

Note: 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.


EQUAL OPPORTUNITY STATEMENT:  Endowment programs do not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, disability, or age.  For further information, write to NEH Equal Opportunity Officer, 400 7th Street, SW, Washington, DC 20024.  TDD:  202/606‑8282 (this is a special telephone device for the Deaf).