Skip to content
  • News

2023 Thoreau Country Conservation Alliance Graduate Student Fellowship

Sponsored by The Thoreau Society

The Thoreau Society is pleased to announce the fifth annual Thoreau Country Conservation Alliance (TCCA) Graduate Student Fellowship. The fellowship is named in honor of the TCCA, which was formed in the 1980s with leadership from Thoreau Society members. TCCA advocated for the protection of Walden Woods from development. The TCCA Graduate Student Fellowship is endowed by two gifts, one in memory of J. Walter Brain, a founding member of TCCA, and a second one in memory of Annette Paradise, who had an abiding love of Walden Pond. The establishment of the fellowship coincided with the acquisition of the J. Walter Brain papers, which detail Mr. Brain’s many decades of advocacy for Walden Woods and his intimate explorations of Walden Woods’ natural and social history.

The 2023 TCCA Graduate Fellow will receive an award of $1,000 to support research and scholarship. We welcome applications from those whose work will contribute to Thoreau scholarship or whose work draws on Thoreau’s biography and writings to contribute to related fields (Thoreau’s circle, Transcendentalism, civil disobedience and social justice, environmentalism and conservation, etc.). Proposals can be for dissertations, thesis work, or other projects.

Current Thoreau Society Board members and Thoreau Society fellowship recipients from the previous five years are not eligible to apply. Applicants who anticipate receiving their PhD during the fellowship year should apply instead for the Marjorie Harding Memorial Fellowship.

In the past, the Thoreau Society Fellowships Committee has given preference to proposals that target materials held at the Thoreau Institute Library in Lincoln, Massachusetts, including the Thoreau Country Conservation Alliance Archives and The Thoreau Society collections, as well as materials held in Concord- and Boston-area archives that are not otherwise accessible. For the 2023 awards cycle, the committee will continue to welcome but will not prioritize applications that propose travel to Concord and Boston archives. We will therefore also welcome applications for funding that enables any of the following:

  • Dedicated time for writing at home, based on previously-conducted research;
  • Accessing electronic resources or local archives;
  • Caregiving while researching and writing;
  • Relief from summer and/or adjunct teaching;
  • Paying for reproductions or permission fees;
  • Or other activities necessary to making progress on a project.

Applicants should email the following to Thoreau Society Fellowships Committee Chair James Finley (

  1. Proposal of no more than one thousand words. Please describe the project and its significance, situating the work within relevant scholarship; detail the work you wish to undertake with the fellowship’s support; and outline your plan for sharing the results of your work. If the fellowship award will be used for travel, please specify the resources you wish to consult at the Thoreau Institute Library or at other archives of the greater Boston area.
  2. Projected budget. Please describe how you plan to utilize the award in support of your project.
  3. Current curriculum vitae or resume.
  4. A (short) letter of recommendation from a faculty member familiar with your work and proposed project (emailed separately to

Applications are due by Friday, March 31, 2023. The Fellowships Committee will contact the awardee by the end of April. The award will be publicly acknowledged in July during the Thoreau Society Annual Gathering (either virtually or in person).

For the 2023 awards cycle, the Thoreau Society plans to offer complimentary registration at the Annual Gathering to all graduate students who submit completed applications for the TCCA Graduate Student Fellowship.

Please contact the Fellowships Committee Chair with questions.

Get news from the Thoreau Society and learn about ways you can help preserve Thoreau Country as part of our common heritage and as the embodiment of Thoreau’s landmark contributions to social, political, and environmental thought.

The Thoreau Society®, Inc.
341 Virginia Road, Concord, MA 01742
P: (978) 369-5310
F: (978) 369-5382

Educating people about the life, works, and legacy of Henry David Thoreau, challenging all to live a deliberate, considered life—since 1941.


Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this article do not necessarily represent those of the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Back To Top