Mellon | 7 February 2019

CFA: Spring 2020 GSI Positions – Future(s)



DeadlineApplications due April 10, 2019

Call: We are seeking applications from qualified PhD students to serve as Graduate Student Instructors to teach a course in the Spring 2020 quarter as part of the THI “Questions That Matter” course series. Over the past few years, The Humanities Institute (THI) has hosted a series of cross-disciplinary, Humanities grounded conversations in downtown Santa Cruz about “Questions That Matter.” The course series expands the impact of these public events into the undergraduate classroom as part of the Andrew W. Mellon Funded Expanding Humanities Impact and Publics project.

This is an opportunity for graduate students to teach their own course and gain skills in course development. Selected graduate students will work with faculty mentors to develop a new undergraduate syllabus exploring the theme, “Future(s).” The cohort of GSIs will work together in Fall 2019 to develop a new syllabus that addresses this concept from an interdisciplinary perspective.

Students will teach this new course in one of 3 UCSC residential colleges with additional support from peer mentors.

Award: Selected applicants will be paid GSI salary for Spring 2020 with in-state tuition, fees and health insurance paid and $5,000 summer fellowship

Course Details:

  • Spring quarter 2020
  • 5 credit, upper-division, undergraduate course
  • 30 student maximum
  • Theme will be Future(s)
  • Will be offered in 3 Colleges with shared, collaboratively-designed syllabus


Participant Requirements: All participating Graduate Student Instructors must commit to a full year of participation in the Questions That Matter program. Participation includes:

  1. FALL 2019: Regular meetings with GSI cohort to design the syllabus and 3 – 4 meetings with faculty mentors to refine the syllabus and prepare the course for university approval; Attendance at related QTM and other events TBD
  2. WINTER 2020: 1-2 meetings with faculty mentors plus additional pedagogy workshops; Mandatory attendance at the “Questions That Matter” public event on January 29, 2019 in downtown Santa Cruz.
  3. SPRING 2020: Teach 30 person (max) seminar in 1 of 3 residential colleges; Attend 2-3 meetings with faculty and peer mentors; Coordinate at least one classroom visit from faculty mentors.


Eligibility/GSI Application Requirements:

  1. PhD students must be in good standing and within normative time and students must be eligible to teach in Spring 2020. A statement from departmental Graduate Directors must attest to these points. (Download form here.)
  2. PhD students in the following departments are eligible to apply for the Public Humanities Graduate Student Instructor (GSI) position:
  • All departments in the Humanities Division
  • Visual Studies
  • Film and Digital Media
  • Latin American and Latino Studies (LALS)
  1. Applicants must be registered and in residence during the 2019-20 academic year (ineligible to apply while on leave)
  2. Advancement to candidacy strongly preferred


Application consists of:

  1. Cover letter of no more than 3 pages describing why applicant wants to teach the course; relevant qualifications and general teaching philosophy. Also describe a particular approach to the theme of Future(s).
  2. A statement signed by your department Graduate Director confirming that you are within normative time and that you are eligible to teach in Spring 2020 (Download Statement here)
  3. Unofficial transcript
  4. One-page CV
  5. Applicants must provide all teaching evaluations as TA and GSI
  6. Letter of recommendation from PhD advisor (emailed separately to
  7. Please note that the application form will ask you the following questions. Please be prepared to answer: (1) Are you currently employed as a Teaching Fellow and how many quarters have you served in a GSI/TA Title?; (2) What year will you be in your program in AY 2019-2020? (3) Are you advanced to candidacy? If yes, when? If no, when do you plan to advance?



*PLEASE NOTE: You must be logged into your Google account to use this application form.

Questions? Please contact Rachel Deblinger, Research Program Manager, THI at rdebling [at]