The Society of Hellman Fellows

Supporting research for outstanding early-career faculty.

The Society of Hellman Fellows is an endowed program at all ten University of California campuses that provides research funding to promising assistant professors who show capacity for great distinction in their chosen fields. The program began in 1995 at UC Berkeley and UC San Diego and has since expanded organically to all UC institutions.

The fellowship program is made possible by a $125M gift from the Hellman Fellows Fund. Hellman Fellowships are open to early-career faculty in a broad range of academic disciplines across all fields, including the arts and humanities, social sciences and STEM. Fellowships can range from $10,000 to $65,000.

Since its founding in 1995, more than 1,900 promising early-career faculty have received Hellman Fellowships, with many recipients going on to become department chairs, award-winning researchers, and MacArthur “genius” grant recipients.

The impetus for the program came when Frances Hellman, a junior faculty member at UC San Diego, experienced first-hand the challenges that faculty can experience early in their careers, before their research can attract external support.

In 2020, after 25 years of funding the Program, the Hellman family generously established an endowment to allow the program to continue in perpetuity across UC’s 10 campuses.

“We will be forever grateful to the Hellman family for this enduring, impactful program,” UC President Napolitano said of the gift. “With dwindling federal funding and a critical need for UC research, especially during the coronavirus era, this generous gift could not come at a better time.”

Learn more about the Hellman Fellows Fund



Hellman Fellows by year: 

For information on past and current Hellman Fellows, contact: