Mellon Scholars Summer Internship and Workshop Program in African American History

The Library Company of Philadelphia’s Program in African American History (PAAH), with the support of the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, is pleased to offer the Mellon Scholars Program in June 2024.

The Mellon Scholars Program inspires, educates, and engages emergent scholars through educational and professional development training. Based at the Library Company of Philadelphia, the program includes an immersive residential internship and professional development workshop. Both are designed to encourage and inspire talented students from underrepresented groups, as well as other emergent scholars interested in African American history, to explore careers in history, library science, and museum studies.

Specifically, the program will:

  • Encourage talented undergraduates from underrepresented groups and those persons dedicated to the study of early African American history to pursue careers in history, library science, and museum studies and provide internships that will enhance their competitiveness when they apply to graduate schools.
  • Strengthen the preparation of graduate students from these groups for independent research and help them be successful in seeking funding and jobs.

During the one-month internship, Mellon Scholars Interns will develop research skills and explore African American history by undertaking an independent research project, an archival-based transcription project, and publishing a history blog post. Significant time will be devoted to developing skills in conducting primary source research. Interns will mine the Library Company’s African American History collections to discover and interpret primary sources for their independent research projects. The transcription project allows participants to work closely with historic documents as they read and transfer their contents into modern formats. Past transcription projects drew from documents within the Pennsylvania Abolition Society Papers (PAS) housed at the Historical Society of Pennsylvania. The PAS papers span over 200 years and consist of records that highlight abolition and anti-slavery practices of the late 18th and 19th centuries. Finally, interns will write and publish a blog post on the Library Company website. Blog posts by past participants may be viewed here.

During the third week of June, interns will be joined by the Mellon Scholars workshop participants. This week focuses on professional development and features presentations from academic scholars as well as university administrators. Students will receive professional feedback on their personal statements and CVs/résumés. Students will also visit several local cultural institutions to learn about the rich cultural and historical offerings in Philadelphia.

  • The Mellon Scholars Internship Program (June 2024, Monday-Friday, 9:00 am to 4:45 pm). Interns will be rising seniors or recent college graduates and will receive a $2,000 stipend. Travel and housing provided by the Library Company.
  • The Mellon Scholars Summer Workshop (June 2024, Monday-Friday, 9:00 am to 4:45 pm) is a one-week professional development program. Workshop participants will be students in their first year of graduate study in an MA program or advanced undergraduates. Participants will receive a $500 stipend. Travel and housing provided by the Library Company.

Applications for the summer 2024 Mellon Scholars Internship Program and Summer Workshop are due by March 1, 2024. Decisions will be made by April 15, 2024.

For more information about the Mellon Scholars Program and application guidelines, contact Jasmine Smith, Assistant Director (

Eligible candidates may apply for both the workshop and the internship. If you wish to apply for both opportunities, check both boxes on the application form. To apply:

  • Go to the application page; fill out the online form and upload a single PDF document containing a brief resume and a 2-4 page personal statement describing future goals and how the internship or workshop would further those goals.
  • One letter of recommendation from a faculty member familiar with the applicant’s academic work should be sent to Jasmine Smith, Curator of African American History and Assistant Director of the Program in African American History, at
  • In addition, official undergraduate and graduate (if applicable) school transcripts should be mailed to: Library Company of Philadelphia, Attn: Mellon Scholars Internship and Workshop Committee, 1314 Locust Street, Philadelphia, PA 19107.