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Application Guidelines


“Landmarks of American History and Culture” projects are designed principally for full-time and part-time classroom teachers and librarians in public, charter, independent, and religiously affiliated schools, as well as home schooling parents. Other K-12 school personnel, including administrators, substitute teachers, and classroom professionals, are eligible to participate, subject to available space. We wish to encourage applicants from a broad range of teaching disciplines: social sciences, art, music, history, literature and languages; all are urged to apply!

Teachers at schools in the United States or its territorial possessions, or Americans teaching in foreign schools where at least 50 percent of the students are American nationals, are eligible for this program. Applicants must be United States citizens, residents of U.S. jurisdictions, or foreign nationals who have been residing in the United States or its territories for at least the three years immediately preceding the application deadline. Foreign nationals teaching abroad at non-U.S. chartered institutions are not eligible to apply. Individuals may not apply to participate in a workshop given by the same director on the same topic in which they have previously participated; in other words, they should not apply to attend the same workshop twice. Individuals may not apply to study with an NEH Landmarks director who is a family member.

Applicants must complete the NEH application cover sheet and provide all the information requested below to be considered eligible.

New for summer 2015: An individual may apply to up to two NEH summer projects (NEH Landmarks Workshops, NEH Summer Seminars, or NEH Summer Institutes), but may participate in only one. Please note that eligibility criteria differ significantly between the NEH Landmarks Workshops and the NEH Summer Seminars and Institutes programs.

Selection criteria

A selection committee (consisting of the project director, one of the project scholars, and a veteran teacher) will read and evaluate all properly completed applications.

Special consideration is given to the likelihood that an applicant will benefit professionally and personally from the workshop experience. It is important, therefore, to address each of the following factors in the application essay:

  1. your professional background;
  2. your interest in the subject of the workshop;
  3. your special perspectives, skills, or experiences that would contribute to the workshop;
  4. how the experience would enhance your teaching or school service.

When choices must be made among equally qualified candidates, several additional factors are considered. Preference is given to applicants who have not previously participated in an NEH Landmarks Workshop, NEH Summer Seminar, or NEH Summer Institute, or who significantly contribute to the diversity of the workshop. While recent participants are eligible to apply, project selection committees are directed to give first consideration to applicants who have not participated in an NEH-supported workshop in the last three years.

Application instructions

All application materials must be sent to the project director at the address listed below. Application materials sent to the Endowment will not be reviewed.

Please indicate on the application cover sheet your first and second choices of workshop dates.

Application checklist

A completed application consists of three copies of the following collated items:

  • the completed application cover sheet;
  • a résumé or short biography;
  • an application essay (no longer than one double-spaced page) as outlined below; and
  • one letter of recommendation as described below.

Application Cover Sheet

The application cover sheet must be filled out online at this address:

Please fill it out online as directed by the prompts. When you are finished, print out the cover sheet and add it to your application package before you click on the “submit” button. At this point you will be asked if you want to fill out a cover sheet for another project. If you do, follow the prompts and select another project and then print out the cover sheet for that project as well. Note that filling out a cover sheet is not the same as applying, so there is no penalty for changing your mind and filling out a cover sheet for several projects. A full application consists of the items listed above, as sent to the project director.


Please include a résumé or brief biography detailing your educational qualifications and professional experience.

Application Essay

The essay is the most important part of your application. It should be no more than one double-spaced page. The essay should address your professional background; interest in the subject of the workshop; special perspectives, skills, or experiences that would contribute to the workshop; and how the experience would enhance your teaching or school service.

Reference Letter

Each applicant should provide a letter of recommendation from his or her school principal, department head, district administrator, or home-schooling association president as appropriate. It is helpful for referees to read the director’s description of the project and your application essay. Please ask your referee to sign across the seal on the back of the envelope containing the letter. Enclose the letter with your application.

Submission of application and notification procedure

Completed applications should be submitted to the project director, not the NEH, and postmarked no later than March 2, 2015.

Three collated copies of the completed applications should be sent to:

NEH Landmarks of American History and Culture Workshop
Dr. Timothy Walker and Ms. Lee Blake
University of Massachusetts Dartmouth
200 Mill Road
Fairhaven, MA 02719

Successful applicants will be notified of their selection on March 30, 2015, and they will have until April 3, 2015 to accept or decline the offer.

Once you have accepted an offer to attend any NEH Summer Program (NEH Landmarks Workshops, NEH Summer Seminars, or NEH Summer Institutes), you may not accept an additional offer or withdraw in order to accept a different offer.

Printable version of the 2015 Application Guidelines.