Humanities Alliance

The CUNY Humanities Alliance (HA), supported by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, explores how humanities inquiry and engagement can facilitate justice and equity in higher education. Through mentorship and supportive peer- and near-peer networks for undergraduate students, graduate students, faculty, and staff, the program helps participants better understand the systems and structures that create conditions of learning in the university, and become more able to act within them to make humanistic inquiry more inclusive and empowering for the students CUNY serves.

In partnership with four community colleges, three cohorts of advanced doctoral students are learning or will learn strategies for teaching, collaboration, leadership, educational development, and instructional design in CUNY’s community colleges. Working closely with faculty, staff, and administrators at partner institutions, graduate fellows fill academic support roles for specific projects that connect to a range of humanities classrooms. With training and support from core HA staff and campus partners, fellows help plan, scope, scaffold, and support innovative opportunities for teaching and learning in the humanities.

In addition, undergraduate students in the CUNY Peer Leaders (CPL) program explore humanities education and career pathways. The program blends elements from both the Futures Initiative Undergraduate Leadership Program and the LaGuardia Mellon Humanities Scholars. Thirty to forty Peer Leaders engage in activities each year to build trust and community, learn skills related to professional development and digital literacy, create a meaningful writing or creative project, broaden their awareness of social justice issues and their connections to their lives, deepen their engagement with the humanities, and hone their leadership and peer mentorship skills.

The CUNY Humanities Alliance is overseen by the Teaching and Learning Center and the Futures Initiative.