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2022 Application Instructions

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An NEH Summer Institute for 4-12 Educators
"John Steinbeck: Social Critic and Ecologist, 2022"

New and revised (from 2020) applications must be submitted by mail to workshop directors by by March 1.

Please review the eligibility criteria for participation in NEH Summer Seminars and Institutes as a Summer Scholar at

NEH Summer Seminars and Institutes allow K-12 teachers an opportunity to enrich and revitalize their teaching through the study of humanities topics that bear upon K-12 education. Participants will receive a certificate upon completion of the program, but the programs are not intended to duplicate graduate-level courses.

Each seminar provides an intimate and focused environment in which sixteen participants (Summer Scholars) study a specific humanities topic under the guidance of one or two established scholars. Seminars have few, if any, visiting faculty. They emphasize sustained interaction among the participants and director(s) through discussion of common readings, conversations about teaching, and advising on independent projects.

Each institute allows twenty-five to thirty-six participants (Summer Scholars) to pursue an intensive program of study under a team of scholarly experts, who present a range of perspectives on a humanities topic. Participants and scholars mutually explore connections between scholarship and teaching of the topic.

In any given year, an individual may apply to two Seminars or Institutes, but may attend only one.


A selection committee is comprised of the project director and two or more colleagues, at least one of whom is a K-12 teacher.  They evaluate all complete applications to select a group of Summer Scholars and identify alternates.  

Application essays should explain how the specific program will benefit the participant professionally. They should, therefore, address the following:  

1.  your effectiveness and commitment as a teacher/educator;   

2.  your intellectual interests as they relate to the topic of the seminar or institute;  

3.  your special perspectives, skills, or experiences that would contribute to the program; and  

4.  evidence that participation will have a long-term impact on your teaching.  

We welcome applications from a variety of disciplines, including natural and social sciences. Previous experience teaching Steinbeck or American literature is not required, but applicants must wish to incorporate knowledge gained during the Institute into their professional lives in some meaningful way.

Three seminar spaces and five institute spaces may be reserved for teachers who are new to the profession (five years of teaching or less). First consideration is given to those who have not previously attended an NEH Seminar or Institute. When choices must be made between equally qualified candidates, preference is given to those who would enhance the diversity of the program.

Applications are due to workshop directors on March 1, 2022

John Steinbeck: Social Critic and Ecologist, 2022

Prior to applying to the 2022 Steinbeck institute, please study the project website and carefully consider the project’s requirements.

A complete application consists of the following three items:

1. Application Cover Sheet

  Complete the Word Docx:

Cover Sheet 2022 (10.63 KB)


form and include 2 printed copies of it with your application.

2. Résumé and References

  Please include a résumé or curriculum vitae (not to exceed five pages). Include the name, title, phone number, and e-mail address of two professional references.

3. Application Essay

  The application essay should be no more than four double spaced pages.  It should address your interest in the subject to be studied; qualifications and experiences that equip you to do the work of the seminar or institute and to make a contribution to the learning community; a statement of what you want to accomplish by participating; and, if appropriate, description of an independent project and its relation to the topic of the program and your professional responsibilities.


Applications must be submitted IN DUPLICATE (2 copies) to the project director, not the NEH, and must be postmarked no later than March 1, 2022Applications sent to the NEH will not be reviewed.

Send your complete application and printed copy of cover sheet to: 

William Gilly and Susan Shillinglaw
Hopkins Marine Station
120 Ocean View Boulevard
Pacific Grove, CA 93950

Successful applicants will be notified of their selection on Friday, March 25, 2022. Applicants will have until Friday, April 8 to accept or decline the offer of a place in the Institute.  

Note: Once you have accepted an offer to attend any NEH Summer Program (NEH Summer Seminar Institute), you may not accept an additional offer or withdraw in order to accept a different offer.


Each participant will receive a stipend according to the duration of the Seminar or Institute, whether one ($1,200) two ($2,100), three ($2,700), or four ($3,300) weeks. The stipend is intended to help cover travel, housing, meals, and basic academic expenses. Stipends are taxable.  

Seminar and institute participants must attend all meetings and engage fully as professionals in the work of the project.  During the project, participants may not undertake teaching assignments or professional activities unrelated to their participation in the project.  Those who, for any reason, do not complete the full tenure of the project will receive a reduced stipend.

At the end of the project's residential period, NEH Summer Scholars are expected to submit evaluations of the seminar or institute.


Endowment programs do not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, disability, or age.  For further information, write to the Equal Opportunity Officer, National Endowment for the Humanities, 400 7th Street, SW, Washington, DC 20024.  TDD:  202/606-8282 (this is a special telephone device for the Deaf).