Working to diversify academia.
Because our differences are a strength.
BLACK SCHOLARS MATTER INITIATIVE
We believe that the ancient world is for
...but know that the study of it is carried out by primarily by white researchers.
Faculty from minority and underrepresented backgrounds have been identified as some of the most "...productive, innovative and impactful..." members of the academic community. Diversity benefits everyone, but the humanities fields are some of the least diverse in academia.
It's an uncomfortable fact that the various fields of study that make up the broader discipline of "the Humanities" are disproportionately populated by individuals that identify as White - as is illustrated by this graph from the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.
The fields that we fund are no exception to this monochromatic rule, as is helpfully illustrated by this graph, taken from a 2018 article in Scientific American...but how do we encourage Black students to pursue a career path in a field where there is outright hostility, and few role models to emulate?
In an effort to increase diversity among students and faculty engaged in the study of the ancient near east, we offer conference scholarships for Black students who are in their junior or senior year, and are contemplating further study in the field. Three scholarships are available for the 2021-22 academic year - two funded by HAPS, and one funded by ASOR.
Winners of the Black Scholars Matter grant receive $1,000 towards conference expenses - be it registration, travel, accommodation, or food costs. Not only that, but successful applicants are paired with a Ph.D. student or early career researcher who will act as a mentor during the conference, helping them to navigate what can be a deeply daunting experience.
In addition, thanks to a generous partnership with ASOR, students who opt to attend ASOR's annual meeting will receive one year's conference registration, and a two year student membership.
This grant not only provides financial aid for conference attendance, but gives Black students the opportunity to start forming professional networks that are so crucial for developing an academic career.
Applications are suspended until COVID controls allow for in-person conferences - please check back for updates.
Applications accepted from December 1st - January 15th (for ARCE attendees) and April 1st - May 14th (ASOR attendees).