About the Program
The Buchanan Library Fellows Program
The Buchanan Library Fellowship program is designed to create in-depth learning experiences for students. The program is open to undergraduate students who are interested in participating in strategic projects for Vanderbilt Libraries over the course of a semester. With faculty and professional librarians as mentors, students work on experiential library projects that will benefit library users. Fellows commit to attending weekly seminars where they work together on multidisciplinary teams to complete their project. They present their work at the end of their fellowship. Selected students learn new skills and complete immersive projects that add to their expertise and resumes. Projects may involve work with rare print and digital collections enhancing accessibility, social media, exhibits and print resources. Through the Buchanan Library Fellowship program, our libraries promote undergraduate research.
- Opportunity to add discrete project to resume and build contacts
- Expand research skills
- Applied learning opportunity
- 10 weekly classes supplement independent teamwork
- Work with leading experts in the library field
Spring 2021 Fellowships
Books through the Ages: Genre in the Nineteenth Century | Apply Here
What was the last book you got lost in? In the nineteenth century, people read potboilers for pleasure, consulted almanacs about weather, and learned how to manage their households and businesses from monthly magazines. Nineteenth-century innovations in book making and printing changed the world and created new opportunities for reading. Buchanan Library Fellows will choose from a range of bound materials that highlight the new and expanded genres that exploded onto the 19th century scene: children's literature, magazines, almanacs, novels, poetry, religious literature, scientific literature, political literature, and more.
In addition to examining the printed materials of the nineteenth century, Fellows will learn the foundations of curatorial practice and book history. Using critical thinking and interpretive methods, Fellows will curate an exhibition of materials from Special Collections. The exhibition will be available online and, covid-19 permitting, in the Library's Second Floor Gallery. Contact: Rachel Lavenda, Mary Anne Caton
From Golden Type to Wild Waves: Fine Press Books in Vanderbilt Special Collections | Apply Here
William Morris used the most up-to-date nineteenth-century technology—photography—to create handmade replicas of Medieval romances and epic poems. Morris' designers and artists at Kelsmcott Press produced fine press work and intricate designs. His works drove Aesthetic Movement design and influenced book artisans long after his death in 1896. Vanderbilt Special Collections is home to many fine press books that build on Morris' philosophy: Morris'own Kelmscott Chaucer, Robert Burns' poems, Emerson's essays, and modern works by Welsh artist Shirley Jones, among others.
In this Buchanan Library Fellowship, one student will develop and run virtual programs for the late Spring 2021 online exhibition that will explore the Nettie Hale Rand Collection of Fine Bindings and other fine press works. Programming will include an art workshop for audiences to explore aesthetics, books arts, and poetry and a digital interactive component. Working with the exhibition curator, Fellows will develop a social media campaign for the exhibit and assist with object research. Fellows typically work 3-5 hours weekly. Due to COVID-19, this spring semester fellowship will be conducted remotely. Contact: Mary Anne Caton
Gateway to Traditional Chinese Monuments: Data Curation and Web Development for Cultural Heritage Preservation | Apply Here
This program is open to both undergraduate and graduate students. Recipients of this Buchanan Library Fellowship will help faculty to develop data for Architectura Sinica, a Chinese architectural history dynamic site archive and architectural thesaurus. Fellows work with A&S faculty and library staff to develop entries on individual sites and/or add visual material for thesaurus of technical terms for Traditional Chinese Architecture. Fellows are acknowledged as co-authors for digital publication of the entries they complete. Pre- or co-requisite of History of East Asian Art (HART 1200) or Architecture and the Mapping of Empire in Asia (HART 2100), or faculty recommendation is required to participate. Contact: Yuh-Fen Benda, Dr. Tracy Miller
Modalities of Text Mining: Exploring British Periodicals at Scale | Apply Here
How can you identify and explore patterns across millions of documents? In this fellowship, Buchanan Library Fellows will learn state-of-the-art techniques for text mining at scale. Fellows will join an ongoing research project to analyze constellations of information in Proquest's British Periodicals Collections. Depending on interest, Fellows will learn to use Apache Spark, a framework for querying distributed data sets; BaseX, a native XML database; or Netsblox, a block-based programming language. After completing the fellowship, Fellows will be able to extract information from big data sets in the humanities, social sciences, or other fields with relative ease and confidence. Contact: Cliff Anderson, Dr. Mark Schoenfield
Telling the Story of Civil War Nashville through Storymaps | Apply Here
Using records, maps and photographs from the Vanderbilt Special Collections and other historic Nashville collections, this Buchanan Library Fellowship will create Storymap projects: interactive, GIS-based visual tools that combine information on many individual locations into a single visual product, telling the exciting stories of Civil War Nashville. The projects will include mapping the fortifications of Nashville or mapping the hospitals of Civil War Nashville. Mapped locations will be matched with information from photos, stories, period maps and articles.
Fellows will assist with historical research and work with faculty to compile and organize available photos, articles and maps of important locations within Civil War Nashville. Fellows will help build Storymaps using ArcGIS software and convert data into file formats amenable to ArcGIS. Contact: Brandon Hulette
Fall 2020 Fellowships
Building a University: Vanderbilt’s First Decade, 1875-1885No Longer Accepting Applicants
Have you ever wondered how Vanderbilt University got its name? Or, were curious about why the Stevenson Science and Engineering Library has so many antique instruments on display? Maybe you would like to learn about what classes were taught and what students did for fun in those early years. If you would like to know more about how curators interpret historic objects, how to find things in the library, or just know more about the place where you will be spending four years of your life, then consider applying for the fall 2020 Buchanan Library Fellowship Program. This semester, four students will examine historically-significant university manuscripts and documents in the Special Collections Library and place them in context with the university’s and the nation’s history. Fellows will curate an exhibition about their topic and present a report on what they learned about Vanderbilt. This fellowship requires a three- to five-hour commitment of your time and agreement to attend weekly classes and labs. Fellows come away with a better understanding of the library, of how to think critically about primary sources, and a completed project on your resume. Contact: Kathleen Smith
Gateway to Traditional Chinese Monuments: Data Curation and Web Development for Cultural Heritage PreservationNo Longer Accepting Applicants
This program is open to both undergraduate and graduate students. Recipients of this fellowship will help faculty to develop data for Architectura Sinica, a Chinese architectural history dynamic site archive and architectural thesaurus. Students work with A&S faculty and library staff to develop entries on individual sites and/or add visual material for thesaurus of technical terms for Traditional Chinese Architecture. Students are acknowledged as co-authors for digital publication of the entries they complete. Pre- or co-requisite of History of East Asian Art (HART 1200) or Architecture and the Mapping of Empire in Asia (HART 2100), or faculty recommendation is required to participate. Contacts: Yuh-Fen Benda, Dr. Tracy Miller
Modalities of Text Mining
No Longer Accepting Applicants
How can you identify and explore patterns across millions of documents? In this fellowship, Library Buchanan Fellows will learn state-of-the-art techniques for text mining at scale. Fellows will join an ongoing research project to analyze constellations of information in Proquest’s British Periodicals Collections. Depending on interest, fellows will learn to use Apache Spark, a framework for querying distributed data sets; BaseX, a native XML database; or Netsblox, a block-based programming language. After completing the fellowship, fellows will be able to extract information from big data sets in the humanities, social sciences, or other fields with relative ease and confidence. Contact: Cliff Anderson
Privacy, Surveillance, and Intellectual Freedom
No Longer Accepting Applicants
New online research environments have made the discovery and consumption of information easier than ever. However, these environments often threaten privacy and intellectual freedom by relying on surveillance economies and architectures. In this seminar, fellows will explore the intersection of privacy and intellectual freedom, and the surveillance logics that influence online research and communication practices. Using a variety of formats (such as a podcast, presentation, or video Public Service Announcement), Fellows will create final projects that analyze issues related to technology and privacy. Contact: Andrew Wesolek
Summer 2020 Fellowships
The summer fellowship has been cancelled.
“Now We Can Begin”: Women’s Activism After the Vote
This summer semester fellowship will examine women’s activism both at Vanderbilt and in the Nashville community in the years after the ratification of the 19th Amendment in 1920. We will explore women’s involvement with various issues and causes, including birth control, the civil rights movement, the equal rights amendment, and women’s equity at Vanderbilt itself. Students will learn about exhibition and curatorial techniques while engaging with the Library’s Special Collections materials. Students will work collaboratively and individually to produce an exhibit—online and in the Library’s Second Floor Gallery. Fellows will present on their work at a reception. Contacts: Rory Dicker, Mary Anne Caton