The purpose of the Harvard University Society of Fellows is to give men and women at an early stage of their scholarly careers an opportunity to pursue their studies in any department of the University, free from formal requirements. They must be persons of exceptional ability, originality, and resourcefulness, and should be of the highest calibre of intellectual achievement, comparable to successful candidates for junior faculty positions at leading universities. These Junior Fellows are selected by the Senior Fellows, who with the President and Provost of the University, and the Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences, ex officio, administer the Society. Those elected receive three year fellowships.
To be eligible for a Junior Fellowship, a candidate must be at an early stage of his or her scholarly career. Men and women interested in any field of study are accepted. Most Junior Fellows receive the Ph.D. just prior to the start of the fellowship. If still pursuing the Ph.D., Junior Fellows should be at the dissertation stage of their theses and be prepared to finish their degrees within a year of becoming fellows. If already a recipient of the degree, they should not be much more than a year past the Ph.D. at the time the fellowship commences.
The number of Junior Fellows at any one time normally is limited to thirty-six, and usually twelve are chosen each year. The term of appointment is three years, and no extensions are granted. During the academic year, Junior Fellows are required to reside in Cambridge or close-by neighboring communities and to regularly attend all of the weekly lunches and dinners. Junior Fellows are expected to work full-time in the office or lab space provided to them by the University during term time. Junior Fellows are not subject to examination, are not required to make reports, receive no credit for courses, and may not be candidates for any degree other than the Ph.D. Those who are still pursuing the Ph.D. should have completed their routine training for advanced work and should be well along in the writing of their theses before becoming Fellows. They may complete the writing of their theses and proceed to such final or special examinations as the universities of their candidacies may require, and may be granted the degree of Ph.D.
Candidates are nominated for Junior Fellowships, generally by those under whom they have studied. Applications are not accepted from candidates themselves.
The deadline for receiving nominations for Junior Fellowships which begin July 1, 2021, is Friday, August 7, 2020.
More information can be found here: https://socfell.fas.harvard.edu/about