Weiss Fellowship for Visiting International Scholars

The Weiss Fellowship was established by a generous benefactor to support visits to Barnard by distinguished international critics and scholars.

To be a Weiss Fellow, a candidate must meet three basic criteria: (1) the candidate must be a foreign national (i.e., not a citizen of the United States) and should not be residing long-term in the United States, (2) the candidate must conduct research on topics that are global in nature, and (3) the scholar’s visit to Barnard must include a lecture that is offered to the greater Barnard community.  All full-time Barnard Faculty Members are eligible to apply to sponsor a Weiss Fellow.

While there is a preference for scholars who specialize in the arts and the humanities, scholars in the social sciences, natural sciences and math will also be considered, especially if their public lecture and other activities on campus highlight interdisciplinary connections with the arts and humanities.

Faculty Members who sponsor a Weiss Fellow are also encouraged to ask the Weiss Fellow to engage with our undergraduates—e.g., giving a guest lecture or teaching a module in a course (or courses), offering a master class or workshop for students, consulting with students on projects.

Please note that a Faculty Member may apply to sponsor a Weiss Fellow whether or not a particular individual has already been identified for the role. In one case, a Faculty Member may know (even if only by reputation) a scholar in a particular field who could lecture on a global issue that would be of general interest to the Barnard community. In another case, a Faculty Member may want to fill a particular need (for example, to identify a guest lecturer who could represent a non-Western tradition of literature, history, music, etc.) and could apply for funding for a Weiss Fellow and then, once funding has been approved, solicit applications for that particular Weiss Fellowship through professional list-servs.

If you have any questions regarding the definition of a Weiss Fellow and the appropriate use of these funds, please contact Giorgio DiMauro, Dean for International and Global Strategy, at 212.854.7430 or at gdimauro@barnard.edu.  

To apply to sponsor a Weiss Fellow

Faculty Members interested in inviting a scholar, critic, or artist to be a Weiss International Visiting Fellow should prepare the following materials:

(1) A short explanation (1-2 pages) of the objectives for inviting a Weiss Fellow to campus. The explanation should address the following questions:
-    If the scholar has already been identified:

  • What is the scholar’s name, country of origin, and current country of residence, and is the scholar affiliated with any particular institution of higher education (or, in the case of an artist or critic, with a particular company or organization)?
  • What is the scholar’s field of research, and how is it global in nature? What makes the scholar (or critic or artist) particularly distinguished in that field?
  • What is the proposed title and topic of the lecture that the scholar would deliver to the general Barnard community, and what is the proposed date for the lecture? What particular opportunity does this lecture offer the Barnard community to enhance their knowledge of and/or conversations about a particular global issue?
  • What are some other ways in which the scholar would engage Barnard faculty and/or students to enhance their knowledge of and/or conversations about a particular topic that is global in nature?

If the scholar has not yet been identified, but the desired profile is known:

  • What would be the purpose of bringing an international scholar to campus in this particular case? What particular need would an international scholar fulfill in your teaching and/or research pursuits at this time?
  • What would be the ideal field of research of the scholar, and how would you advertise the role in order to attract a researcher who is particularly distinguished in the field and whose work is appropriately global in nature?
  • What plan do you have for the scholar to engage Barnard faculty and/or students, in or out of the classroom, with regard to a particular topic that is global in nature?
  • What sort of open lecture would you like to hear from a scholar with such a profile, and what particular opportunity would that lecture offer the Barnard community to enhance their knowledge of and/or conversations about a particular global issue?

(2) A detailed budget proposal for the Weiss Fellow’s visit

  • The specifics of the budget proposal will vary in each case, and may or may not include costs for honoraria, travel, accommodation, per diem, and event details (e.g., programs, catering).

These materials should be submitted the semester before the proposed visit: by December 1st for a scholar to come in the spring semester, and by May 1st for a scholar to come in the fall semester.  Please submit materials by email to Giorgio DiMauro, Dean for International and Global Strategy, at gdimauro@barnard.edu. The approval process will involve the Faculty Advisory Committee on Internationalization, the Office of the Provost, and, as needed, consultation with faculty/departments/programs at Barnard that may have similar international initiatives underway and with the Office of Budgeting & Planning.

It is possible that funding may be available for only a portion of the proposed budget or that funding may not be available at all; in either case, the Dean will work with the Faculty Member to adjust budget amounts or to identify alternative sources of funding where possible.

Once funding is approved for the Weiss Fellow, the Dean will then work with the sponsoring Faculty Member to craft an invitation letter to the scholar, and the Provost’s Office will provide administrative and logistical support for the Weiss Fellow and related programming as needed.

After the completion of the Weiss Fellow’s visit to campus, the sponsoring Faculty Member will be asked to submit a short (1-2 page) report of the visit, including a brief description of the scholar’s activities while on campus, a consideration of the impact of the scholar’s activities, and an evaluation of the success of the scholar’s visit—including any suggestions for improvement for the Weiss International Visiting Fellowship program overall.