Two-Year Postdoctoral Position at the McNeil Center for Early American Studies, UPenn

Diversity in Early American Digital Scholarship

The McNeil Center for Early American Studies, in partnership with Penn History, Penn Libraries, the University of Maryland, and its MITH Center, invites applications for a two-year postdoctoral Research Fellow, beginning September 1, 2022, with emphasis on digital scholarship and diversity in Early American Studies. Based at the McNeil Center, the fellow will work in partnership with a growing team of digital specialists at the University of Pennsylvania and the University of Maryland, to facilitate digital projects in early American Studies.

The Fellow will work principally on the development of two projects: 1) “Freedom Seekers,” a forthcoming digital resource  devoted to the writing and collection of the biographies of enslaved people who sought freedom in revolutionary America; and 2) Slavery, Law, and Power ( At Penn, there will also be opportunities to collaborate with the Price Lab for Digital Humanities, data specialists at Penn Libraries, and the Kislak Center for Special Collections, in workshops and seminars. These opportunities are situated within an increasingly rich landscape of digital history at and among Philadelphia’s historic and archival institutions, including American Philosophical Society, the Library Company, the Historical Society of Pennsylvania, and the Museum of the American Revolution. 

The fellow will receive a starting stipend of $52,000. The position includes health insurance.


Priority in the review process will be given to applicants based on the following criteria:  

  • Exciting and relevant dissertation research focused on diversity and the early Americas
  • Extensive work with primary sources
  • Demonstrable experience with digital humanities tools, methods, or approaches
  • An understanding of the contributions a diverse workforce brings to the workplace
  • Demonstrated interest in creating diverse and inclusive teaching and learning experiences
  • Ideally, experience working on either editing projects or digital humanities projects
  • Strong communication, presentation, and interpersonal skills

Application Instructions

Applicants should submit a cover letter stating their academic field, their research agenda and a description of their experience and interests in the digital humanities along with a proposed project to be advanced during the fellowship period (not to exceed three pages, single spaced)

  • Cover letter
  • Curriculum vitae  
  • A dissertation abstract (not to exceed three pages, single spaced)
  • The names and contact information of three references, including at least one who can speak to the applicant’s experience with digital humanities

Review of Applications will begin on June 15th, 2022.

The School of Arts and Sciences is strongly committed to Penn’s Action Plan for Diversity and Excellence and to creating a more diverse faculty (for more information see: 

The University of Pennsylvania is an Equal Opportunity Employer. We encourage applications from women, BIPOC scholars, LGBTQ scholars, scholars with disabilities, and/or protected veterans.

Equal Employment Opportunity Statement

The University of Pennsylvania values diversity and seeks talented students, faculty and staff from diverse backgrounds. The University of Pennsylvania is an equal opportunity and affirmative action employer.  Candidates are considered for employment without regard to race, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, creed, national or ethnic origin, citizenship status, age, disability, veteran status or any other legally protected class. Questions or concerns about this should be directed to the Executive Director of the Office of Affirmative Action and Equal Opportunity Programs, University of Pennsylvania, 421 Franklin Building, 3451 Walnut Street,  Philadelphia, PA 19104-6205; or (215) 898-6993 (Voice) or (215) 898-7803 (TDD).

COVID-19 Vaccination Policy

COVID-19 vaccination is a requirement for all employees at the University of Pennsylvania. New hires are expected to be fully vaccinated before beginning work at the University. For more information about Penn’s vaccine requirements and the use of Penn Open Pass, visit the Penn COVID-19 Response website for the latest information.


Application deadline: June 15, 2022

Date posted: May 19, 2022