The Michigan Society of Fellows was founded for the purpose of promoting academic and creative excellence in the humanities, the arts, the social, physical, and life sciences, and in the professions.
Each year the Society selects outstanding applicants for appointment to three-year fellowships in the humanities, the arts, the social, physical, and life sciences, and in the professional schools. The society seeks a diverse and international pool of applicants and especially welcome candidates from underrepresented backgrounds.
Each Fellow has a three-year appointment as Assistant Professor in an affiliated department of the University and a three-year appointment as a Postdoctoral Scholar in the Society of Fellows. This appointment is not tenure-track. The current annual stipend is $60,000. Fellows are eligible for participation in the University health, dental, and life insurance programs. Each fellow is expected to teach the equivalent of one academic year, i.e., a total of two terms during the period of the fellowship. Any subsequent appointment of a Fellow to a position at the University of Michigan would be subject to the rules governing new appointments.
Fellows are expected to be in residence in Ann Arbor for the academic years of appointment (September to May) and to participate in the activities of the Society of Fellows. Off-campus research leave during academic terms will be permitted only in rare cases, only for brief periods of time, and only upon written application to the Chair of the Society well in advance of the proposed leave. Any leave granted will count as part of the fellowship tenure.
In the fall of 2015, the Society of Fellows entered into an agreement with Tsinghua University, Beijing to provide three three-year fellowships at Tsinghua University. The purpose of the Tsinghua-Michigan Society of Fellows is to promote advanced scholarly inquiry in humanities and humanistic social science fields in a collaborative intercultural setting and to foster academic exchange between the Tsinghua Institute for World Literatures and Cultures and the Michigan Society of Fellows, and at every level between Tsinghua University and the University of Michigan. The Chair of the Tsinghua-Michigan Society of Fellows is Haiping Yan, Dean of Tsinghua Institute for World Languages and Cultures.
The Michigan Society of Fellows was established in 1970 with grants from the Ford Foundation and the Horace H. and Mary Rackham funds. Horace Rackham, for whom the University of Michigan’s graduate school and the building that houses it are named, was a lawyer, neighbor of Henry Ford’s, and one of the first investors in the Ford Motor Company. He sold his shares in 1919 to Edsel Ford for $12.5 million and spent the rest of his life as a philanthropist.