Mellon | 9 April 2020

CFA: Public Humanities GSI Positions – Memory and the Americas



DeadlineApplications due May 15, 2020

Call: We are seeking applications from qualified PhD students to serve as Graduate Student Instructors for The Humanities Institute’s (THI) “Questions That Matter” course series. Over the past few years, THI has hosted a series of cross-disciplinary, Humanities grounded conversations around an annual theme. 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. In 2020-2021, THI’s theme will be Memory and the course will focus specifically on Memory and the Americas.

This is an opportunity for graduate students to teach their own course and gain skills in course development. Selected graduate students will work together, with support from faculty mentors, to collaboratively develop a new undergraduate syllabus exploring the theme Memory and the Americas from an interdisciplinary perspective.

Students will teach this new course in Spring 2021 in one of 3 UCSC residential colleges and receive support from peer mentors.

Award: Selected applicants will be paid a GSI salary for Spring 2021 with in-state tuition, fees and health insurance and receive a $5,000 summer fellowship.

Course Details:

  • Spring quarter 2021
  • 5 credit course
  • 30 student maximum
  • Subject will be Memory and the Americas
  • 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 2020: 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.
  2. WINTER 2021: 1-2 meetings with faculty or peer mentors plus additional pedagogy workshops; Required attendance at signature events related to the theme.
  3. SPRING 2021: Teach 30 person (max) seminar in 1 of 3 residential colleges; GSIs receive additional support from faculty and peer mentors, and at least one classroom visit.

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 2021. 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 2020-21 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 subject, Memory and the Americas.
  2. THI Fellowship Application: Graduate Director Form signed by your department Graduate Director confirming that you are within normative time and that you are eligible to teach in Spring 2021 (Download Form here)
  3. Unofficial transcript
  4. One-page CV
  5. Applicants must provide all teaching evaluations as a TA and GSI
  6. Letter of recommendation from PhD advisor (emailed separately to
  7. 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 2020-2021? (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 Saskia Nauenberg Dunkell, Research Program Manager, THI at