Library to Host First Hilltop Fellowship Recipients

Paolo Luca Bernardini and Darby Ratliff

The Booth Family Center for Special Collections and Georgetown’s Catholic Studies Program have announced recipients of the first pair of Hilltop Short-Term Research Fellowships, which funds short-term research in Lauinger's Special Collections on Catholic Studies topics.

“Not only does the fellowship program help humanities scholars advance their own research projects, but the outcomes will highlight the significance of our library's collections, and the presence of the visiting researchers on campus will enhance the scholarly conversation within our own university community,” said Rev. David Collins, S.J., Haub Director of Catholic Studies at Georgetown. “Coming from across the nation and the world and working on questions of great contemporary concern, the first two Hilltop fellows beautifully exemplify our hopes for the program.”

Darby Ratliff, a doctoral candidate in American Studies at St. Louis University, will be using the John Gilmary Shea Collections (and others) to research connections between nineteenth-century Catholic school development in urban immigrant communities and on Native reservations.

Paolo Luca Bernardini, a member of faculty at the University of Insubria/Italy, researches "Christian environmentalism," and his current project focuses on mid-twentieth-century economist Barbara Ward. Ward was a longtime columnist at The Economist, early advocate of "sustainable development," and the founder of the International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED). A large portion of her papers is held in Booth.

The Fellowships provide access to the Booth Family Center for Special Collections for four weeks and a $3,000 stipend to support significant scholarly projects on a topic related to Catholicism or any discipline that makes up Catholic Studies, including theology and philosophy, history and literature, the arts, and natural and social sciences.

The application period for 2024 Hilltop Fellowships is anticipated to open September 1.