SEEK Fellowship: MSU Broad Art Museum

Project: Resistance Training: Arts, Sports, and Civil Rights

Public Outreach/Research and Exhibition Fellowship

Research Area Expertise Sought: (including but not limited to) the history of sports, the civil rights movement, sports law, Title IX legislation, gender studies, critical race theory, the history of racial segregation and integration in the US, among others.

This is a co-curricular research fellowship opportunity open to doctoral students in good standing at Michigan State University

Dates: Winter/Spring 2023
Work Hours: 8hrs/week, Flexible
Work Environment:
Virtual and In-Person
Credits Bearing:
Fellowship Stipend:
TBD, Depending on Scope of Work

About the Fellowship

The MSU Broad Art Museum is seeking graduate fellows to assist in the research and organization of the upcoming exhibition Resistance Training: Arts, Sports, and Civil Rights (August 19, 2023–February 18, 2024). As the title suggests, the exhibition will examine the intersection the arts, sports, and the civil rights movement, and the relationship between the arts and sports as platforms for the ongoing expression of social justice related issues. The exhibition will be a group exhibition featuring a range of artists working across different media. The history of athletics and the arts at MSU will also be an important backdrop for the exhibition, grounding the conversation with a local perspective.

The fellow will work closely with museum curators and staff across the organization, bringing a different perspective and approach to these issues to contribute to the design and implementation of the exhibition and its related programming. The fellow will gain experience in museum operations, curation, and will have access to the different departments, participating in the execution of a major museum exhibition. The fellowship is designed for each participant to propose and develop original research, scholarship, and public outreach efforts, expanding the voice and strategies integral to the exhibition’s mode of address.

Exhibition description:

The civil rights movement of the 1950s and 1960s in the United States brought about long overdue, sweeping social change. As people of color and their many allies took to the streets to assert their civil rights, their movement found its ways into all areas of American life. Notably, college and university campuses became important sites for this struggle. Beyond the classrooms and union halls, though, it was often the sports field, the courts, arenas, and athletic facilities through which significant societal change was enacted. The relationship between arts, sports, and the ongoing movement for civil rights has a long history, one that continues to be written today. Many historical and contemporary artists have found great inspiration in the stories of athletes who stood their ground and used their elevated platforms to vocalize the need for wider social awareness and change. This exhibition shares many of those stories as they inspire the work of artists who in turn solidify the significance of these acts as part of our cultural heritage and identity.

Fellowship description: 

The graduate fellows will work closely with the exhibition curators and other museum staff to create interactive and interpretative content in support of the exhibition and its overall programming; depending on the candidate’s interests and previous experience, this may include:

  • researching artworks;
  • producing multimodal interpretative materials (such as video interviews, visual essays, brochure content, etc.);
  • designing and implementing a public program;
  • developing public outreach strategies that reach diverse audiences on and off campus.

We are seeking fellows with research focuses and expertise in (but not limited to) the history of sports, the civil rights movement, Title IX legislation, gender studies, critical race theory, the history of racial segregation and integration in the US, among other related fields of knowledge. In consultation with the exhibition curators and other museum staff, fellows will have the opportunity to contribute to and implement a number of projects project to create multimodal access points to the exhibition and the many topics and issues embedded therein. This work will primarily be conducted independently, but there will be regular virtual team meetings to share research and exhibition/project updates, with additional in-person and museum visits as appropriate.

How to Apply:

These fellowships will begin March 1, 2023, and continue through the spring semester at MSU. Interested applicants should submit the following materials to Senior Curator and Director of Curatorial Affairs Steven L. Bridges ( and Curatorial Administrative and Research Assistant Thais Wenstrom ( by 11:59PM on Friday, February 17, 2023. Late submissions will not be reviewed.  Applications should consist of the following components:

  • One page statement describing applicant’s interest in project, area of expertise/study, and potential contribution
  • CV/resume, including reference contact information
  • A short (no longer than one page) writing sample

Any questions about the fellowship can be directed to Senior Curator and Director of Curatorial Affairs Steven L. Bridges (