Established in 1934 by Isabelle Stone (ΦΒΚ, Wellesley College) in honor of her mother, Mary Isabel Sibley, this fellowship was designed to reward women pursuing graduate work in one of two fields of study, French or Greek, with the experience of researching and living abroad. Elected to Phi Beta Kappa in 1905, Dr. Stone received her Ph.D. in 1908 from Cornell University and was then awarded the Alice Freeman Palmer Fellowship and spent the next year in Europe, principally in Greece, where she continued her study of Greek history and language.
Through the Mary Isabel Sibley Fellowship, Dr. Stone intended to pass on the opportunity for pleasure, wisdom and scholarship that she found during her time in Greece to future generations.
The Mary Isabel Sibley Fellowship is awarded annually, alternating in the fields of Greek and French. The award may be used for the study of Greek culture (e.g. language, literature, history, archaeology), or the study of French language or literature. It carries a stipend of $20,000 and is not restricted to members of Phi Beta Kappa or to U.S. citizens. The stipend is typically paid in two installments, the first on July 1 of the award year, and the second on January 1 of the following year.