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.

Design a series for National American Indian Heritage Month in November

The Wild, Wild East: New York's Drama of Westward Expansion

Robert Spiegelman
America's first "Wild West" was New York's frontier. This multimedia lecture illuminates the fateful crossroads where settler dreams meet native lifeways, at the heart of Westward Expansion.

Cooling Mother Earth: New York's Footprint in Nature, Then and Now

Robert Spiegelman
A tour-de-force in words and images, "Cooling Mother Earth" connects the extraordinary twin legacies of New York's Indians and great forgotten Naturalists, to take us back to our roots and better confront our environmental future.

Explore lectures in Religion, Ethics, and Philosophy this holiday season

New Perspectives on Renaissance Art and the Rise of Humanism

Philip Gould
The rise of Humanism is most readily traceable in European paintings from the 15th to 17th centuries. The place of the artist is central to this critical development.

The New York Volunteer: Songs and Stories of the Civil War

Linda Russell
This program looks at New York in the Civil War as revealed in songs augmented with excerpts from letters and diaries.