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About the Sharon Davie Fellowship

Under the direction of founding Director Sharon Davie, the Women’s Center opened its doors to the University community in the fall of 1989. After earning her PhD in English at UVA in 1975 and teaching for three years at Kenyon College, Sharon returned to UVA in 1978. In 1980, she became the first director of the Women’s Studies program, whose creation was supported by a Ford Foundation grant for curriculum transformation. When thousands of students, faculty, and staff petitioned for a Women’s Center in 1987, Sharon was charged with establishing it. After dedicating 25 years to the Women’s Center, she retired in the spring of 2015.

The Maxine Platzer Lynn Women’s Center has established this fellowship to honor Sharon Davie’s tremendous contributions to the University of Virginia. This award recognizes the path that Sharon’s career took here at UVA, while also providing tangible support to students seeking to determine their own future direction.

Each year, the Women’s Center will provide a one-time stipend of $2500 to a doctoral student to support an activity intended to enhance their professional development, with a special focus on supporting explorations into diverse career paths, including positions outside the professoriate but inside the university and positions outside academia. Priority will be given to applicants who are interested in non-traditional academic careers both within and beyond the academy, supporting the AAU’s efforts to make diverse Ph.D. career pathways visible, valued, and viable.



Applicants for the 2024 Sharon Davie Fellowship must be current PhD students at UVA who intend to be enrolled full time for 2024-2025.

Application Instructions

To apply for the 2024 Sharon Davie Fellowship, submit the following by Monday, May 13:

  • letter of interest that addresses how will the award help you pursue your broader career objectives
  • current CV
  • responses to these fields on the submission form: name, department, email, phone, year in program, and name and contact info for DGS and/or academic advisor

Provide all items listed via this submission form by the above deadline.


The selected awardee will be notified in late May. This is a nonservice award that will be paid as a stipend at the beginning of June; awardee is responsible for any applicable taxes. The Women’s Center requests a 1-2 page report on the awardee’s experience at the conclusion of the funded activities (or an update by May 2024) and a brief note to Director Emerita Sharon Davie.


Please contact Carol Gilbert with questions.


Past Recipients of the Davie Fellowship

2022          Liz Larson

2023          Eniola Afolayan