*Please note: We are now accepting applications for the Diversity Scholarship Program on a rolling basis until we reach capacity.

The Diversity Scholarship Program introduces new preservation leaders to the historic preservation community at the annual PastForward conference, hosted each year by the National Trust for Historic Preservation. The primary objective of this program is to support conference participation reflecting the diverse nature of America.

The Diversity Scholarship Program honors diversity by providing scholarship opportunities to historically underrepresented groups in the historic preservation profession and in its leadership positions, including ethnicity, race, gender and gender identification, sexual orientation, and socioeconomic background. Those who identify with one or more of these groups are eligible for the Diversity Scholarship. Diverse preservation professionals, students, and/or volunteers are all encouraged to apply.

All diversity scholars and the first 50 mentors will receive complimentary registration for PastForward Online, November 3rd - 5th, 2021. Selected scholars and mentors will receive information about their acceptance, mentor/scholar-cohort pairings, and how to register for the conference on a rolling basis.  


This year’s conference theme is Lead the Change. Historic preservationists are change-makers dedicated to strengthening communities, yet we are all grappling with significant, overlapping challenges, from pandemic shutdowns and economic shock to racial injustice and a changing climate. Today, the preservation movement’s work has never been more important and more vital. However, meaningful changes are needed in many aspects of our practices and policies, from how it is determined which historic places are preserved and interpreted, to how we can evolve our practices to ensure the full American story is being told. Read more about the theme and sub-themes of Promoting Equity and Justice Through Historic Preservation, Sharpening Essential Practices of Preservation, and Adapting to a Changing Climate at this year’s conference.

The complexity and scale of these challenges require all preservationists to become even more innovative, nimble, and collaborative, bringing together our diverse perspectives and values to create positive change. We must each discover our own role in leading the change. Read more about the idea of a National Impact Agenda which will be discussed at the conference. The PastForward 2021: Online Conference will take place virtually from November 2nd – 5th, 2021.

Please visit the conference webpage to learn more about the conference schedule, guest speakers, and important news.

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