Visiting Scholars Program


Since 1956, the Phi Beta Kappa Visiting Scholar Program has been offering undergraduates the opportunity to spend time with some of America's most distinguished scholars. The purpose of the program is to contribute to the intellectual life of the campus by making possible an exchange of ideas between the Visiting Scholars and the resident faculty and students. History of the Visiting Scholar Program


The Visiting Scholars travel to more than 100 colleges and universities each year, spending two days on each campus and taking full part in the academic life of the institution. They meet informally with students and faculty members, participate in classroom discussions and seminars, and give a public lecture open to the academic community and the general public.


Over the last 60 years, 648 Visiting Scholars have made 5,288 visits to Phi Beta Kappa sheltering institutions.


Fall 2017 Visiting Scholar, Dr. Price V. Fishback, renowned UA Professor of Economics, dining at The Edison in Tallahassee with Dr. Shawn Kantor, Friend of Dr. Fishback and FSU Professor of Economics, Dr. Annelise Leysieffer, and Mr. Andrew Lindsay (PBK Chapter President and Student counter-part, respectively).


This dinner took place immediately following Dr. Fishback's public-lecture in the Great Hall of the Honor's, Scholar's and Fellow's House at 5:30 PM on Monday 10/23/2017.



Read testimonials  from the Visiting Scholars and the chapters about their experiences with the program. 


The Visiting Scholar panels for 2017-2018 and 2016-2017 are listed below.


Application Process

Participation is limited to the 286 campuses that shelter chapters of Phi Beta Kappa . Priority is given to those institutions not located in major metropolitan centers or that do not have extensive resources on which to draw for similar programs.

Please review the procedural information and best practices for campus scheduling  before requesting a Visiting Scholar. If you are interested in bringing one of the scholars to your campus, you will need to get in touch with the secretary or president of the local Phi Beta Kappa chapter so that your preference can be considered by the chapter when applying for a visitor. Invitations should not be sent directly to the Visiting Scholars. Applications for the 2018-2019 program will open in March 2018. 

Questions about the program and the application process should be addressed to the Director of the Visiting Scholar Program, or you may call (202) 745-3231.

To see videos of past Visiting Scholar lectures, please click here.



(Click on the Scholar's name for a biographical sketch and schedule of visits.)

Victor S. Batista

Professor of Chemistry, Yale University

Judith Carney

Professor of Geography, University of California, Los Angeles

George Dyson

Historian of Technology, Bellingham, Washington

Price V. Fishback

Thomas R. Brown Professor of Economics, University of Arizona

David L. Haberman

Professor of Religious Studies, Indiana University

Bonnie Honig

Nancy Duke Lewis Professor in Political Science and Modern Culture and Media, Brown University

Thomas W. Laqueur

Fawcett Distinguished Professor of History, University of California, Berkeley

Lydia H. Liu

Wun Tsun Tam Professor in the Humanities, Columbia University 2016-2017 ɸßК-Frank M. Updike Memorial Scholar

Mary Miller

Sterling Professor of the History of Art, Yale University

Osamu James Nakagawa

Ruth N. Halls Distinguished Professor of Photography, Indiana University

Ayanna Thompson

Professor of English, George Washington University

Amy Cheng Vollmer

Isaac H. Clothier, Jr. Professor of Biology, Swarthmore College

Stephen Walt

Belfer Professor of International Affairs, Harvard University

Paige West

Claire Tow Professor of Anthropology, Barnard College/Columbia University

James C. Zachos

Professor of Earth and Planetary Sciences, University of California, Santa Cruz


(Click on the Scholar's name for a biographical sketch, schedule of visits, and lecture titles.)

Rolena Adorno

Sterling Professor of Spanish, Yale University 2016-2017 ɸßК-Frank M. Updike Memorial Scholar

William Bialek

John Archibald Wheeler/Battelle Professor in Physics, Princeton University

Bart D. Ehrman

James A. Gray Distinguished Professor of Religious Studies, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Barbara J. Grosz

Higgins Professor of Natural Sciences, Harvard University

Jennifer L. Hochschild

Henry LaBarre Jayne Professor of Government and Professor of African and African American Studies, Harvard University

Philip Kitcher

John Dewey Professor of Philosophy, Columbia University

Marsha I. Lester

Edmund J. Kahn Distinguished Professor in Chemistry, University of Pennsylvania

Nora Naranjo Morse

Sculptor, Poet, Espanola, New Mexico

Daniel T. Rodgers

Henry Charles Lea Professor of History, Emeritus, Princeton University

Jeremy A. Sabloff

Christopher H. Browne Distinguished Professor of Anthropology, Emeritus, University of Pennsylvania

David F. Weiman

Alena Wels Hirschorn ’58 Professor of Economics, Barnard Collegey

Laura Wexler

Professor of American Studies and Professor of Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies, Yale University

John Fabian Witt

Allen H. Duffy Class of 1960 Professor of Law, Yale University

Patricia Wright

Distinguished Service Professor of Anthropology, Stony Brook University

Shuhai Xiao

Professor of Geobiology, Virginia Tech

Love of learning is the guide of life.


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