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Fellowship: Frequently Asked Questions

What are the residency periods?
Fellows spend four months: either the Fall term (September-December) or the Spring term (January-April). Some scholars are invited to spend the full academic year (September to April).

May I collaborate with scholars/laboratories? Will the Academy help me make these connections?
Candidates should contact labs/scholars at Columbia directly, to gauge their interest, before applying to the Academy. Collaboration is encouraged, but not necessary – except in the case of scientific researchers who need to work in a Columbia lab (such researchers must have an agreement before applying to the Academy).

What is the word limit for the proposal?
The Project Proposal should not exceed 1300 words (excluding references).

What if I’m just getting my Ph.D. degree?
The degree must be awarded before August for Fall term Fellows, and before December for Spring Fellows.

Do you accept recommendation letters in Italian?
Yes, recommendation letters may be in English or in Italian.

Do you accept projects and CVs in Italian?
No; English is required.

What are the stipend and benefits?
We offer A) a gross salary ranging from $4,500 to $7,000/month (you may pay tax on this; you must consult your accountant for advice); B) a travel allowance to cover the airfare to & from New York; C) a portion of health-insurance costs.

Do you give us housing, or pay our rent?  
No, but we assist our fellows in applying for Columbia Housing (note that the University does not guarantee spaces for every Fellow).

Is the deadline for reference letters flexible?
Your referees may have delays, but we do need letters soon after the December deadline.

How are candidates assessed?
The selection of Fellows will be based on the quality of the applications. These will be reviewed by a jury appointed by the Director and the Advisory Board of the Academy, which is composed of dozens of senior scholars in many fields at Columbia and other leading universities.

What qualifications must I have?
Normally Fellowships will be open to advanced scholars from the post doctoral to the full professorial level. (Candidates should expect to have their doctorates in hand no later than the summer after they apply.)

How long do Fellows stay?
Fellows will be expected to be in residence for one or two academic semesters. At the Academy, Fellows find a place where they can work, interact amongst themselves and with members of the Columbia community, and generally remain free from outside obligations. For periods of either one or two academic semesters, the Academy provides office space and support, with opportunities for the organization of public lectures, seminars, conferences and publication.

Would I be in the Academy building daily?
Fellows will be expected to be in residence for the duration of their stay at the Academy, although connections with other institutions of higher learning will be encouraged. Absences for more than three days at a time should be requested from the Director. Fellows may not hold concurrent fellowships and are expected to dedicate their time to research while in residence. Any resulting publications should acknowledge the support of the Academy, as should any biographical notes published in connection with the Fellow's appearances while in residence.

Can I apply again after having been a Fellow before?
Former Fellows may re-apply no earlier than four years after the completion of their residencies.

I won a Fellowship but I wish to delay to another semester/year – may I?
Given the large number of eminently qualified candidates for the Italian Academy Fellowships every year, candidates selected in any one year will not be allowed to postpone their offer of a Fellowship to another year. If the Fellowship is not taken up in the term of the year in which it is offered it will be forfeited – although candidates who turned down an offer of a Fellowship in one year may of course apply for the Fellowship in another year. No guarantee of success, however, can be offered in such cases. Again, former Fellows may re-apply no earlier than four years after the completion of their residency.