Speakers in the Schools

The New York Council for the Humanities’ Speakers in the Schools program offers FREE top-notch lectures by a renowned and diverse group of scholars on a wide variety of humanities subjects to high school communities across New York State.

If your application is successful, the Council will cover all costs associated with the program, including the Speaker’s honorarium and travel expenses.

Commemorative Lectures

Explore the Council's list of lectures commemorating the anniversaries of:

How to apply to host a lecture

Select a Lecture/ Speaker
Browse lecture listings to find the right topic for your students, school community and curriculum.
Find a Lecture/Speaker >

Contact the Speaker to arrange a date and time
Directly contact the Speaker you have selected to establish a mutually agreed upon date and time for the lecture presentation.
Browse Speaker directory >

Apply to the Council
Once you have selected a lecture and confirmed a date and a time with the Speaker, submit the Speakers in the Schools application.
Apply >

Plan your event
As soon as you receive notice of Council approval, start planning your event, including pre- and post-lecture activities.
View Planning Tips >

Submit Follow-Up Evaluation
It is required to submit an online evaluation within three (3) weeks following your event.
Program Evaluation >

Need more information about Speakers in the Schools?
View answers to Frequently Asked Questions >


Speakers in the Schools is made possible by funding from the New York State Legislature.

The Council is proud to partner with the New York State Historical Association's New York State History Day to support the humanities and education in schools and cultural institutions statewide.

Map out a series in June on New York State History

In the Good Old Colony Days: Songs of Early America

Linda Russell
Balladeer Linda Russell presents a look at the 18th century America through ballads, broadsides, love songs, marches, drinking songs and dance tunes.

Of Time and the River: Songs of the Historic Hudson

Linda Russell
Linda Russell explores the history of the Hudson River Valley through folk ballads, Revolutionary War songs, Erie Canal ditties and dance tunes.

Celebrate the Fourth of July with an American History Topic

Understanding the Second Amendment

James L. Coll
In this non-partisan lecture, we will discuss the ongoing debate over whether the Second Amendment articulates an individual or collective right to own a gun.

Swept by Ocean Breezes: A History of Coney Island

John B. Manbeck
This slide lecture surveys the role of early Coney Island in creating a world-renowned amusement center with three major parks, hundreds of ancillary rides, a beach and a boardwalk. Coney Island augmented Brooklyn's growth with its many transit routes that drew millions to New York City's most populous borough.