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NEH Challenge Grant

National Endowment for the Humanities Challenge Grant

In December 2006, Messiah College was awarded a $200,000 Challenge Grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities to support our Center for Public Humanities. In order to receive the full $200,000, Messiah must raise $600,000 by 2011. The year the College received this prestigious award, only 22 applicants were funded (out of 122 who applied - 18%). Messiah was also the only liberal arts college in the country funded for a Humanities Center in 2006; the other recipients were large research universities or libraries.

The Messiah College Center for Public Humanities seeks to bring together educators, students, and community partners for the promotion and development of innovative and integrated modes of public humanities programming and dissemination of humanities scholarship. The Center facilitates programs in public humanities for the College and the regional community, including symposia, lectures, and educational workshops.

Donors who give to the Center for Public Humanities to help us reach our NEH Challenge Grant goal may take advantage of several naming opportunities that may honor a benefactor's family name and legacy while also advancing the mission of the Center. For instance, a donor may wish to name a distinguished lecture series that brings nationally renowned speakers who stir genuine regional public interest in the humanities. Past presenters at such lectures have included noted media critic and documentary filmmaker Dr. Jean Kilbourne and the Pulitzer-Prize-winning American historian David McCullough.

Gifts of $25,000 to $100,000 (payable over a period of 1-5 years) will endow a named lecture for the Center for Public Humanities, e.g., American Democracy Lecture, Fall Distinguished Lecture Series, or Spring Distinguished Lecture Series.

If you are interested in helping us reach our $600,000 goal by naming a lecture series or learning more about other naming opportunities in conjunction with the NEH Challenge Grant, please contact Jon Stuckey at 717-796-5065 or email