A panel of MMUF PhDs speaks at the MMUF-SSRC graduate student summer conference.

The MMUF program's support for fellows continues beyond graduate school into their postdoctoral and faculty careers. The Social Science Research Council and the Institute for Citizens & Scholars, under grants awarded by the Mellon Foundation, offer two major events designed to support Mellon PhDs as they navigate the milestones of their faculty careers: the PhD Retreat and the Junior Faculty Career Enhancement Fellowship.

In addition, fellows who complete the PhD in eligible fields may apply to receive a final payment of $5,000 to be used toward payment of their undergraduate or graduate school loans. Fellows who wish to request this final payment should contact the MMUF coordinator their undergraduate institution.

The SSRC's PhD Retreat

The final component of the SSRC's sequential series of graduate initiatives is the PhD Retreat, which brings together Mellon PhDs for three days in January every other year. This event is designed exclusively for those fellows who have completed the doctorate, with preference given to those who are at the reappointment stage or close to tenure. The PhD Retreat is an opportunity to reflect on the transformative journey Mellon PhDs have made from college to graduate school to the completion of the doctorate and to discuss issues and milestones they are now confronting as young faculty members; in past years, the program has focused on teaching, research, publication and funding. Finally, the Retreat provides an opportunity to revive and solidify relationships with colleagues and mentors, expand professional networks, and re-commit to the mission of MMUF.

The Institute for Citizens & Scholars' Junior Faculty Career Enhancement Fellowship

The Junior Faculty Career Enhancement Fellowship, administered under a Mellon Foundation grant by the Institute for Citizens & Scholars, seeks to increase the presence of underrepresented minority junior faculty members and other faculty committed to eradicating racial disparities in core fields in the arts and sciences. The JFCEF is open to junior faculty who have completed their third year of teaching and are preparing for tenure. This competitive program provides participants with a year-long sabbatical, a senior faculty mentor, and a three-day retreat.


Eligible faculty must:

  • Be in the third year of a tenure-track teaching appointment;
  • Be able to accept the fellowship in the forthcoming academic year;
  • Teach in one of the eligible fields.

The Award

  • $30,000 stipend (maximum award)
  • $1,500 grant for research, travel or publication
  • The stipend and research grant cover a twelve-month period, beginning in June
  • The Fellow's institution is expected to supplement the Career Enhancement Fellowship award (paid leave or other funding) so the Fellow receives his/her academic salary for the year in question.
  • The Fellow's institution is expected to provide yearly health and benefits coverage.
  • The award cannot be transferred to another institution.


  • Each selected fellow is expected to identify a senior faculty member or scholar in his/her academic field who will advise and mentor during the grant period.
  • Fellows and their mentors will attend a two and one-half day retreat in October to discuss their research and academic work, the nature of scholarly professionalism, and other educational issues of relevance to junior faculty. The Institute for Citizens & Scholars covers the cost of attendees' travel and accommodations.
  • Fellows must submit a final report at the end of the grant period.