Hollyhock Humanities Fellowship

Hollyhock Humanities Fellowship

The Hollyhock Humanities Fellowship is a transformative, year-long professional learning experience for NY metro-area high school humanities teachers who want to keep learning and build excellence for their students.

First option
Program Description
Learning Experience
Eligibility and Selection
Important Dates

Hollyhock Humanities Fellowship Program

Nearly half of all teachers leave the classroom within five years. In schools that serve students from low income communities, the turnover is even higher—leaving our most vulnerable students with the least experienced teachers. One factor among many is that teachers feel unsupported in their professional growth and development.  The Hollyhock Humanities Fellowship addresses these complicated educational realities by re-invigorating and re-inspiring experienced high school teachers to continue to persist and thrive in the classroom by connecting them to their content and helping them grow in their pedagogy amongst a community of similarly motivated colleagues.

Program Overview

The Hollyhock Humanities Fellowship welcomes high school humanities teachers from across the New York metro area who are interested in nourishing their intellectual souls by developing their humanities content and pedagogy knowledge through equity-focused learning communities, exploring New York cultural institutions, and partnering with experts in the field. 

Please note: Our inaugural cohort (July 2022) will only include history and social studies teachers. English teachers may be eligible for future cohorts. 


Features of the Fellowship

  • A One Year Program of Professional Development:
  • Summer Seminar:  A two week seminar at the Relay Graduate School of Education in NYC.   The seminar includes humanities content instruction from experts in the field, workshops grounded in rigorous content pedagogy and visits to renowned cultural institutions. 
  • Intersessions:  Fellows come together for Saturday workshops in October, December, February and May.
  • Coaching: video-based coaching sessions throughout the school year with expert practitioners & peers
  • A $2,000 stipend for participation
  • 60-75 NY CTLE Continuing education hours

Program Description

During the summer, fellows participate in a two-week seminar of rigorous content and practice-based professional development. The seminar engages the fellows in five professional development areas focused on expanding the fellows’ content knowledge and pedagogical approach to teaching in order to benefit the students they teach. 


  • Deepening knowledge in humanities content and disciplinary work with university professors who are experts in the field.  
  • Engaging in rigorous, equity-focused, practice-based, content pedagogy 
  • Exploring what it means to be a culturally responsive and anti-racist classroom leader
  • Discovering New York's renowned cultural institutions through trips and special programs designed to align to humanities content.
  • Building community with other fellows across participating schools
Relay Hollyhock Humanities Fellow

Fellows will also participate in four Saturday intersessions in October, December, February and May to continue development work begun in the summer, visit cultural institutions and build leadership skills in coaching teachers and leading professional development sessions. 

Instructional coaching during the school year supports and extends the experience. As part of a networked professional community, fellows meet virtually each month with their expert instructional coaches and other fellows.  Fellows upload videos of their classroom teaching in order to improve instructional practice, share resources, and delve into issues of equity in their classroom.

The Hollyhock Humanities Fellowship Learning Experience

The Hollyhock Fellowship is a one-year experience consisting of three components: 

  • Summer Seminar at Relay GSE 
  • Four Saturday intersessions, and 
  • Virtual coaching during the school year.


Summer Seminar

July 18 - 22 & July 25-29, 2022

At the Hollyhock Summer Seminar, fellows participate in two weeks of engaging, professional development.   The seminar engages the fellows in both rich history content and history content pedagogy.  The content will be focused on American history on the theme “Liberty and Justice for All”: American Stories of Striving for Equity and Justice. 

The pedagogy courses will focus on:

  • Facilitating close reading and discourse
  • Developing historical thinking
  • Applying the 4 Question Method to unit design: 
    • What happened? (narrative) 
    • What were they thinking? (interpretation) 
    • Why then and there? (explanation) 
    • What do we think about that? (judgement) 
  • Integrating culturally responsive and anti-racist approaches as a classroom leader


Hollyhock Fellowship Learning Experience

Summer Seminar Activities

Cultural Institution Visits: Fellows will visit renowned museums and community cultural institutions to learn from their exhibits, get tours from curators and experts to deepen their content knowledge, analyze and interpret the arguments of the exhibits and explore ways to connect the cultural institution to their classrooms. 

Workshops: Fellows engage in rigorous, practice-based, content pedagogy workshops. Fellows will develop their own lessons and practice executing them and receive feedback from faculty and colleagues.

 Daily Discourse:  Fellows will engage in close readings on ideas and research in education and pedagogy and will then facilitate rigorous discussion amongst themselves on these thought-provoking topics.

Community Building, Mindfulness and Wellness:  Fellows will engage in daily community building, mindfulness and wellness activities for their own participation and to learn ones that they can bring back to their students. 

Learning Experiences During the School Year 

Hollyhock Learning ExperiencesIntersessions:  Fellows will participate in four Saturday intersessions in October, December, February and May. These intersessions will continue the development work begun in the summer with practice labs, video feedback and workshops around building leadership skills. in coaching teachers and leading professional development sessions.   Fellows will also continue to work with New York cultural institutions.

Year-Long Coaching: Instructional coaching supports fellows throughout the school year. As part of a networked professional community, fellows meet virtually each month with their expert instructional coaches and other fellows.  Fellows will upload videos of their classroom teaching in order to get feedback and to improve instructional practice.  They will share lesson materials, and delve into issues of equity in their classroom, while building a community with each other that enriches their experience in the education profession.

Eligibility and Criteria for Selection

Highly qualified applicants will have:

  • Between 3-10+ years of teaching experience in high school history/ social studies for 2022. There may also be cohorts of English teachers with History/SS for 2023.
  • A high school teaching position (9-12) at a NY metro-area school where >50% of students qualify for free and reduced lunch (district, charter, and private schools are welcome).
  • A belief in personal responsibility to work for equitable outcomes for all students
  • Commitment to professional growth with an openness to feedback and a willingness to engage in live practice and be videotaped while teaching.
  • Investment in collaboration with the fellowship cohort
  • Ability to attend the entire summer seminar and Saturday intersessions in-person. 

Learn more about the application and eligibility requirements

Important Dates

Application Due: 

  • Feb. 4, 2022

Summer Seminar: 

  • July 18-22 & July 25-29, 2022
  • Intersession Dates ’22-23
    • Saturday, Oct. 15, 2022, 
    • Saturday, Dec. 10, 2022,
    • Saturday,  Feb. 27, 2023
    • Saturday, May 20, 2023

Informational Webinars will be held on Nov. 30, Dec. 15, Jan. 12.

Sign up to attend

How do I contact Relay about the Hollyhock Humanities Fellowship?

To request more information, please email us at professionaleducation@relay.edu and put “Hollyhock Humanities Fellowship” in the subject line.

When are the Hollyhock Humanities Fellowship applications available?

Applications open this year on November 1, 2021, and close on February 4, 2022. Applicants who apply will be notified of their application status by mid-March.

Should I apply if I am not sure I can make a commitment to participate in all activities in summer and across the year?

We prefer that teachers only apply if they can fully commit to attending the entire two-week summer seminar July 18-22 and July 25-29, 2022 and the four Saturday intersessions on Oct. 15, 2022, Dec. 10, 2022, Feb. 27, 2023,  May 20, 2023.  The application process is competitive, and we have many more applications than spots, so if you are unsure of your commitment, please wait to apply until you are ready to engage for the entire year-long program of the fellowship.

What is the difference between the Stanford Hollyhock Fellowship and the Relay Hollyhock Humanities Fellowship?

The Hollyhock Humanities Fellowship is a special program hosted by the Relay Graduate School of Education for experienced humanities teachers in the New York Metro area.  It is designed to focus on developing just high school history/social studies teachers in 2022 and then may be adding both English and Social Studies teachers in 2023.  The Hollyhock Fellowship is a one-year program.  The Stanford Hollyhock program is a national two-year program hosted by Stanford University’s Center to Support Excellence in Teaching for school-based teams of teachers in English, History, Math and Science.  Both programs are possible because of the generous support of the Hollyhock Foundation.

Why is the eligibility only for teachers who have taught between 3-10+ years in history/social studies?

Experienced teachers need support and opportunities for growth to help them thrive in the classroom. We want to work with teachers who are still seeking to grow and improve for their students and to help them become much-needed teacher leaders in their schools.

For the 2022-23 school year, we only offer fellowships to high school teachers who teach in history/social studies. In 2023 we may offer the fellowship to English teachers as well.

What is a typical day like at the Hollyhock Summer Seminar?

The Institute typically runs from 9:00 am until 4:30 pm Monday through Friday with additional opportunities for socializing and community-building activities on the weekday evenings.  Fellows will attend classes at the Relay Graduate School of Education Campus on 25 Broadway in lower Manhattan. We will have professional development sessions where we deep-dive into content, participate in daily intellectual discourse on relevant topics and work on practice-based pedagogy.  Daily coffee, beverages, snacks and lunch will be provided each day.  There will also be afternoon trips to NY’s renowned cultural institutions on certain days of the week.     Our hope is that all these experiences will build a community of teaching professionals that lasts long after the two-week summer institute ends.

What are the dates for the Summer Seminar and the Saturday Intersessions?

In 2022, the Hollyhock Summer Seminar will be held on Monday, July 18th to Friday, July 22nd and Monday, July 25th  to Friday, July 29th. Classes will run from 9:00 AM to 4:30 PM.   There are no classes on the weekends.   The Saturday Intersessions will take place on Oct. 15, 2022, Dec. 10, 2022, Feb. 27, 2023,  May 20, 2023. They will run from 10:00 AM to 3:00 PM.  Our current plan is for all classes to be in-person at Relay Graduate School of Education’s campus, 25 Broadway, NY, NY 10011.

What kinds of things do I need to do to prepare for the summer institute if I am accepted?

Fellows are invited to write a short biography about themselves and their school for our website. Additionally, we ask that fellows bring teaching materials that they will work with next year as we will be doing some curriculum design work.  We will also ask all fellows to submit a video of them classroom teaching from the current school year. There will also be shared books and readings to complete and links to tasks prior to arrival in July for the Summer Seminar. Each year the preparation varies.

How do the continuing education units (CTE’s) I earn at Relay Hollyhock get documented?

Relay will email each Hollyhock Fellow a transcript with a record of the CTE’s earned after each summer and each school year. Fellows can use this transcript as verification of their professional learning hours from Hollyhock. Please note that these are not graduate credits as fellows are not enrolled at Relay as graduate students. Hollyhock fellows will also need to keep track of their own CTE documentation throughout the fellowship.

May I apply if I am a SPED or ESL teacher?

If you are a SPED or ESL educator who teaches history/social studies in 2022 and/or possibly English in 2023, then you may apply. At this time, we do not offer separate sessions for SPED or ESL teachers.

Ready to Apply?

Explore the application requirements for the Hollyhock Humanities Fellowship and begin your application today.


Contact us to inquire about the Hollyhock Humanities Fellowship.