Small Museum Association

Small Museums Working Together

SMA Conference Scholarships


Applications

The deadline to submit a scholarship application for 2017 has passed. The SMA Conference Committee will determine the winners of the scholarships and notify them by December 31, 2016.


Scholarship Types

Lisa Mason-Chaney Scholarship

Lisa Mason-Chaney, a former president of the Small Museum Association, embodied the spirit of SMA by demonstrating exactly how much could be done by the smallest of us. As a museum professional, her knowledge of and dedication to professional standards and best practices was unparalleled. She showed by example that to be small meant to be dynamic, vital, engaging, and relevant to the community. The scholarship awarded in her honor supports funding for a Conference attendee who also reflects the same traits.  

Lesley van der Lee Scholarships

The Small Museum Association’s Lesley van der Lee Scholarships offer funding for up to ten SMA Conference attendees. Lesley van der Lee is an important part of the history of the SMA, as she was often responsible for planning the SMA Conference during its formative years. Lesley designed legislation that provided for the Maryland Historical and Cultural Museum Assistance Program and taught up-and-coming museum professionals in the Museum Studies program at the George Washington University. The scholarship named in her honor covers the cost of conference registration, hotel room, meals and a one-year membership in the SMA.

Anyone affiliated with a museum, library, historical society, or related graduate study program (e.g. Museum Studies, Public History, Library and Information Studies, Historic Preservation) is eligible for the Lisa Mason-Chaney and Lesley van der Lee Scholarships. This includes full-time or part-time employees, board members, students, interns, and volunteers. Past conference attendees are encouraged to apply but previous scholarship winners are not eligible.


Museum Organization Scholarships

The Small Museum Association is partnering with several other museum organizations to offer additional scholarships to this year’s conference:
  • Historic House Consortium of Washington, D.C. (HHMC) – One scholarship is available to cover both registration and lodging for a staff member (paid or unpaid) at an HHMC member site; no additional action needed to be considered for this scholarship.
  • Maryland Museums Association (MMA) – Two scholarships are available to cover both registration and lodging. Open to staff members at MMA member sites and graduate students attending a program in Maryland or Washington, DC; no additional action needed to be considered for these scholarships.     
  • Prince George’s County History Consortium - One scholarship is available to cover both registration and lodging. To qualify, applicant must be a volunteer or staff member in a Prince George’s County museum, or a County resident enrolled in an undergraduate or graduate course of Museum Studies; no additional action needed to be considered for this scholarship.
  • The U.S. Federation of Friends of Museums (USFFM) – One scholarship is available to cover both registration and lodging for a museum staff member or volunteer from the Washington, D.C. area “who has shown a serious and substantive interest in contributing to the success of a museum;” no additional action needed to be considered for this scholarship.

Awards

The Small Museum Association (SMA) recognizes two museum professionals each year at its conference by selecting them for awards. The two awards available are:

  • The Hunter-Burley Award, which recognizes an individual’s outstanding contributions to the advancement of public access and professional growth for an individual institution
  • The Small Museum Association Award, which celebrates an individual’s outstanding contributions to the advancement of funding for, professional growth within, and/or the accessibility of information to the small museum community on a regional or state level.

Nominating a colleague for either of these awards is an excellent opportunity to publicly acknowledge their hard work at one museum or in the small museum field. 
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