Bard Graduate Center Research Fellowships

Bard Graduate Center (BGC) is pleased to announce its Fields of the Future Initiative, a funded research fellowship and mentorship program aimed to help promote diversity and inclusion in the advanced study of the material world. As a reflection of the need to explore and expand the sources, techniques, voices, perspectives, and questions of interdisciplinary humanities scholarship, our research fellowship theme for academic year 2020-21 is “How do we know?”

How we know is intrinsically related to who “we” are—the varied identities, experiences, training, skills and questions we carry with us into research. Broadening the range of what we know, and our understanding of how we know it, requires new sources and new techniques, but also new voices and new visions. In an effort to promote that necessary diversity and inclusion in the fields of decorative arts, design history, and material culture, we particularly wish to encourage applicants from historically underrepresented groups and/or projects of related thematic focus (see FAQ).

BGC invites scholars from university, museum, and independent backgrounds with a PhD or equivalent professional experience to apply for funded research fellowships. Doctoral students of exceptional promise are also encouraged to apply. The fellowships are intended to fund collections-based research at Bard Graduate Center or elsewhere in New York City, as well as writing or reading projects in which being part of our dynamic research environment is intellectually valuable. Fellows will be paired with BGC faculty and research librarians to connect with human and material resources.

Bard Graduate Center is a graduate research institute devoted to the study of the decorative arts, design history, and material culture, drawing on methodologies and approaches from art history, economic and cultural history, history of technology, material culture studies, philosophy, anthropology, and archaeology. Our MA and PhD degree programs, Gallery exhibitions, research initiatives, and public programs explore new ways of thinking about the cultural history of the material world. We possess a specialized library of 60,000 volumes exclusive of serials and publish the journals West 86th: A Journal of Decorative Arts, Design History, and Material Culture and Source: Notes in the History of Art, the book series Cultural Histories of the Material World (all with the University of Chicago Press), and the catalogues that accompany the exhibitions presented every year in our Gallery (with Yale University Press). Over 50 research seminars, lectures, and symposia are scheduled annually and are livestreamed around the world on Bard Graduate Center’s YouTube channel.

To apply, please submit the following materials electronically via email to in a single PDF file: (1) BGC fellowship application form; (2) cover letter explaining why Bard Graduate Center is an appropriate research affiliation and how your work bears on the question “How do we know?” (3) 150- word abstract of project; (4) detailed project description; (5) CV; (6) publication or academic writing sample of approximately 20–30 pages; (7) Names of two references; we will ask you to contact them if needed and letters should be sent by email ( or post (to Bard Graduate Center, Research Fellowship Committee, 38 West 86th Street, New York, NY 10024). All materials must be received by November 15, 2019. Incomplete or late applications will not be considered. Please direct questions to the Research Fellowship Committee via email ( and see our Frequently Asked Questions page.

The stipend rate is $3,500 per month, and comes with housing. Fellowships can be held for a period of 1 to 6 months. The timing of dates will be negotiated with individual awardees. Fellows will be given a workspace in our Research Center at 38 West 86th Street, between Columbus Avenue and Central Park West, in New York City and accommodation at Bard Hall, at 410 West 58th Street, between 9th and 10th Avenues.

We do not reimburse fellows for travel, relocation, or visa-related costs in connection with this fellowship award. Also, please note that the fellowship stipend and the value of the provided housing may be subject to taxes for both US citizens and non-US citizens in accordance with US tax code.

Bard Graduate Center is an equal opportunity employer and we welcome applications from those who contribute to our diversity. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, mental, or physical disability, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, familial status, veteran status, or genetic information.

Bard is committed to providing access, equal opportunity, and reasonable accommodation for all individuals in employment practices, services, programs, and activities.

Manager of Grants & Contracts
Celebrating its 25th Anniversary, Bard Graduate Center is seeking a motivated, entrepreneurial, experienced development professional with a passion for education and the arts who is ready to join an established team building support for an internationally recognized institution dedicated to the research and exhibition of the decorative arts, design history and material culture.

The Manager of Grants & Contracts reports directly to the Chief Advancement Officer and is a key member of a five person Development team. He/she is Bard Graduate Center’s lead development writer, creating primary institutional fundraising documents including proposals, case statements, and appeals. The Manager is responsible for maintaining a strong base of institutional support by securing grants and sponsorships from foundations, government agencies, and corporations for a range of priorities, including financial aid, curricular initiatives, research, exhibitions, publications, and general operations. The Manager works closely with faculty and curators to identify funding opportunities from government and institutional prospects, develop proposals and facilitate contracts for funded projects. When needed, Manager will retain and work closely with contracted grant writers.


Grant Writing and Management

  • Write grant proposals, letters of interest, and reports to foundations and government agencies.

  • Manage the logistics of proposal submission. 

  • Maintain existing database and archives of grants submitted and received as well as all interim and final reports. 

  • Establish current and mid-range priorities for grants targeted to institutional needs, priorities, and special projects and those providing support for faculty research and exhibitions.
  • Work with Development staff to research and identify potential funding sources for faculty research, academic initiatives, exhibitions, and operations.
  • Facilitate discussions concerning research opportunities.
  • Collaborate with faculty and staff to develop areas for potential funding.
  • Work with staff and faculty to gather required support materials including budgets, biographies, statistics, press, and publications among other materials.
  • Liaise with Finance Department to develop shared project budgets.
  • Create resources to support faculty and staff with individual research grant submissions.
  • Accompany BGC representatives on solicitation and stewardship meetings. Prepare and conduct appropriate briefings prior to prospect/institutional interaction.
  • Support the work of the Chief Advancement Officer and other development staff as assigned.

Oversight and Reporting

  • Carefully track the progress of projects funded through restricted gifts and endowments ensuring that reporting requirements are met.
  • Work closely with BGC staff and faculty to ensure that projects are meeting stated goals.
  • Prepare reports and communications to funders and others.

Development Writing and Support

  • Working closely with Chief Advancement Officer to draft case statements, proposals, appeals, acknowledgement letters and other written communications that help BGC meet its strategic fundraising goals.
  • Work closely with staff throughout the institution to maintain files with updated language for numerous exhibitions and initiatives as well as credit lines.
  • Write annual scholarship reports and other stewardship communications. 

Program Management

  • Maintain a portfolio of institutional funders for ongoing cultivation and stewardship.
  • Prepare an annual plan that delineates financial as well as strategic goals and appropriate metrics.
  • Complete an annual program review of results, determine strengths and challenges of the program, and modify plans accordingly.
  • Prepare monthly progress reports.

Other responsibilities and tasks as needed.

Required Qualifications

  • Excellent writing skills
  • Master’s degree in a related discipline
  • 3 years or more experience in a position that includes writing and fundraising with a successful record of securing grants from NEA, NEH and other government sources as well as major national and international foundations
  • Knowledge of sponsorship policies and procedures as well as business principles governing grants
  • Excellent communication, interpersonal, and organizational skills
  • Entrepreneurial, strategic, and results achievement orientation
  • Collaborative team player
  • Working knowledge of and other web-based granting agency technologies, word processing, database (Raisers Edge), spreadsheet, and search engines


  • PhD
  • Proposal experience in a research university.

To apply, please submit a cover letter and resume to No telephone calls please. Bard Graduate Center is an equal opportunity employer and we welcome applications from those who contribute to our diversity. AA/EOE


The Bard Graduate Center Facilities Department is seeking a full-time Maintainer/Porter who will report to the Director of Facilities and receive direction from the Operations Manager and the Facilities managerial team.

The Bard Graduate Center offers MA and PhD programs in the study of the cultural history of the material world and is committed to the encyclopedic study of things, drawing on methodologies and approaches from art and design history, history of technology, philosophy, anthropology, and archaeology and cultural history.

The Maintainer/Porter is a full-time staff position with duties in the operations and maintenance areas at assigned institutional properties (18W 86th Street, 38W 86th Street, and Bard Hall). Duties include regular upkeep and day-to-day maintenance of the Bard Graduate Center’s facilities, including emptying trash, cleaning, vacuuming, sweeping, and other related tasks; instrumental in the preparation for events, meetings, classes, and functions at all BGC properties (room configuration/set-up, lay-out of catering supplies and materials, post-function clean-up, etc.); assist with the painting of walls, minor plumbing work, mechanical repairs and related projects as directed; performs other related duties as necessary, assigned, and/or directed.

The position requires the incumbent to have demonstrated timeliness, exhibit a customer-service orientation, and maintain a neat and professional appearance. The incumbent must be capable of lifting up to 65 lbs and must able to communicate using e-mail and radio. Incumbent must be flexible and able to work overtime when necessary. Some experience in facilities/maintenance related fields, including cleaning, painting, mechanical, plumbing or electrical work. Experience with facilities-related work in academic institutions and/or arts organizations desirable. Familiarity with building systems helpful.

To apply, please submit a brief cover letter and resume to:

The Bard Graduate Center is an equal opportunity employer and welcomes applications from individuals who will contribute to its diversity. AA/EOE.

Security Officers

The Bard Graduate Center has a full-time position available for Security Officer. As a member of the BGC security team you will report directly to the Head of Safety & Security as your immediate supervisor and receive other directives from the Charge-of-Shift supervisor.


To provide personal, equipment, and real property security for faculty, staff, students, and visitors within an assigned area of the institution. Provides escort services, and other basic public assistance as needed, and performs routine security and safety patrol duties within the assigned area. Remains alert to any and all emergency situations and provide a first-line response, and emergency management if required.

Customer Service

It is important to remember that we are expected to meet or exceed the academic excellence of the Bard Graduate Center with the hands-on excellence of our security service. Officers must be flexible, adaptable, and never develop the “it’s not my job” attitude. A friendly smile and helpful mindset is expected of all officers as is necessary on any college campus. Students, faculty, and staff need to have confidence in our security force by consistent positive performance and service.


High School diploma/GED or higher; current New York State guard’s license, Fire Guard certified, and 3 plus years experience. Candidate must have multitasking skills, strong communication skills, able to lift 45lbs, and a professional appearance. Fax resume with 3 references to 212.501.3079. Please no telephone calls. The BGC is an AA/EOE employer.