The CLAS Mellon Dissertation Research Travel Fellowship supports outstanding doctoral students in the Social Sciences who need to conduct dissertation research or fieldwork in Latin America. This fellowship provides support for dissertation research travel from 3–12 months in duration. 

This program is funded with the generous support of the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation


  • University of Chicago doctoral students in the Social Sciences Division* who have completed all requirements for the PhD but the dissertation, including formal admission to candidacy, by the time they take up the fellowship.

  • Any dissertation topic that has Latin America as its central focus will be considered.

    *Eligible programs include Anthropology, Comparative Human Development, Economics, History, Political Science, Psychology, Social Thought, and Sociology.

Duration of the Grant

  • Students may propose research for periods of 3–12 months. The fellowship may not be renewed. 

Fellowship Benefits

  • Fellowship funds are intended to support transportation, living costs, and research expenses for the duration of a fellow's proposed stay abroad.

Application Process

The following materials will be submitted via the online application.

  • Application Form
  • Two-page curriculum vitae
  • Fellowship proposal (not to exceed 5 single-spaced pages). The proposal should briefly explain the purpose and significance of the proposed work, describe the candidate's preparedness for this research, detail the proposed research plan, provide the local contacts who will support and facilitate this work in-country, and specify the proposed length of residency. 
  • Current transcript (please download from
  • A letter of recommendation from the dissertation chair or faculty adviser (please email directly to CLAS at

Terms and Conditions

A fellow shall:

  • maintain satisfactory progress in the conduct of his or her research;
  • devote his/her time in country to full-time research on the approved topic;
  • remain a student in good academic standing;
  • Submit a 1-2 page summary of the outcomes of the research upon completion of travel;
  • and, acknowledge support of the CLAS Mellon Dissertation Research Travel Fellowship in the dissertation and/or any research publications that may result from this grant.

Questions? Please contact Lindsay Ortega, CLAS student affairs coordinator.