How to Apply

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The information below contains information for the 2019 seminar. Application instructions for the 2021 Seminar are coming soon!
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Please review the eligibility criteria for participation in NEH Summer Seminars and Institutes as an NEH Summer Scholar here.

NEH Summer Seminars and Institutes allow K-12 teachers an opportunity to enrich and revitalize their teaching through the study of humanities topics that bear upon K-12 education. Participants will receive a certificate upon completion of the program, but the programs are not intended to duplicate graduate-level courses.

Each seminar provides an intimate and focused environment in which sixteen participants (NEH Summer Scholars) study a specific humanities topic under the guidance of one or two established scholars. Seminars have few, if any, visiting faculty. They emphasize sustained interaction among the participants and director(s) through discussion of common readings, conversations about teaching, and advising on independent projects.

Each institute allows twenty-five to thirty-six participants (NEH Summer Scholars) to pursue an intensive program of study under a team of scholarly experts, who present a range of perspectives on a humanities topic. Participants and scholars mutually explore connections between scholarship and teaching of the topic.

In any given year, an individual may apply to two Seminars or Institutes, but may attend only one.

Selection Criteria

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 requirements, and general participation in the work of the project.

Our selection committee consists of the seminar directors, the educational advisor, and colleagues of the directors. We will evaluate all complete applications to select a group of NEH Summer Scholars and identify alternates.

Application essays should explain how this seminar will benefit the participant professionally. They should, therefore, address the following:

  1. your effectiveness and commitment as a teacher/educator;
  2. your intellectual interests as they relate to the topic of this seminar;
  3. your special perspectives, skills, or experiences that would contribute to this seminar; and
  4. evidence that participation will have a long-term impact on your teaching.

Given the nature of our seminar, we are also particularly interested in applicants who desire collaboration between the humanities and STEM fields.

Three seminar spaces must be reserved for teachers who are new to the profession (those who have been teaching for five years or less). First consideration is given to those who have not previously attended an NEH Seminar or Institute. When choices must be made between equally qualified candidates, preference is given to those who would enhance the diversity of the program.

Application Instructions

A complete application consists of the following three items:

  1. The Application Cover Sheet
    • Complete the cover sheet online at
    • Follow the prompts.
    • Before you click the "submit" button, print the cover sheet and add it to your application package. Then click "submit."
    • You will be asked if you want to fill out a cover sheet for a second project. If you do, repeat the process.
    • Do not use the same cover sheet for different projects.
  2. A Résumé and References
    • Please include a résumé or curriculum vitae (not to exceed five pages). Include the name, title, phone number, and email address of two professional references.
  3. The Application Essay
    • The application essay should be no more than four double-spaced pages. It should address your interest in the subject to be studied; qualifications and experiences that equip you to do the work of the seminar and to contribute to the learning community; and a statement of what you want to accomplish by participating; and, if appropriate, description of an independent project and its relation to your professional responsibilities. 

Submission of Applications and Notification Procedure

Applications must be submitted to the project directors, not the NEH, and must be postmarked no later than March 1, 2019. Applications sent to the NEH will not be reviewed.

Email your application to

Notification: Successful applicants will be notified of their selection on Friday, March 29, 2019. They will have until Friday, April 5, to accept or decline the offer.

Note: Once you have accepted an offer to attend any NEH Summer Program (NEH Summer Seminar or Institute), 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 Equal Opportunity Officer, National Endowment for the Humanities, 400 7th Street, SW, Washington, DC 20024. TDD: 202/606‑8282 (this is a special telephone device for the Deaf).