Programming Fellowship

Athena Film Festival Programming Fellowship

Applications are now closed, but will reopen in summer 2025! 

The Athena Film Festival Programming Fellowship was created in 2022 as an opportunity to develop the next generation of film festival programmers. This is a learning and career development Fellowship opportunity for individuals passionate about festival programming and women’s leadership. 

Through this Fellowship, you will deepen your understanding of how to review and consider film festival submissions. Working together with the Athena Film Festival Post-Baccalaureate Fellow and Programmers, you will develop a multi-faceted Festival program that speaks to Athena’s mission of showcasing diverse, powerful stories of women’s leadership, with a focus on the short film line-up for the 15th annual Athena Film Festival, held from March 6 to March 9, 2025.

Fellows will benefit from the opportunity to connect with Athena’s Artistic Director, Melissa Silverstein, and other individuals in the industry to deepen their knowledge of the industry landscape.

The Athena Film Festival will select two programming fellows for the 2024-25 season. Applications will be open from May 8 to June 12, 2024 (5 PM EST). 

The Fellowship dates are July 2024 to March 2025. There is a $1,500 stipend available.

Fellowship Requirements:

  • Screen 8-10 hours of films weekly (shorts over the summer and features in the fall) and develop a written evaluation for each film based on Festival criteria.
  • Participate in weekly programming review meetings with the Post-Baccalaureate Fellow and Programmers.
  • Assist in researching films for consideration. 
  • Participate in monthly learning/networking opportunities with industry professionals and learn more about the festival industry.
  • Write and edit program capsules for film guides, website, and other promotional materials. 
  • Attend the 2025 Athena Film Festival (March 6 – March 9, 2025) to connect with filmmakers, introduce films, and moderate Q&As with attending filmmakers. (travel stipend may be provided).

Eligibility Criteria

  • Commitment to women’s leadership and deep appreciation for the Athena Ethos.
  • Knowledge of and an appreciation for independent film.
  • This hybrid fellowship takes place predominantly in a virtual setting, with one or two team gatherings at Athena’s offices in New York City. Fellows must have the ability to join meetings virtually and travel to NYC for the in-person gatherings (a travel stipend may be provided). 
  • Availability to participate in the entire program pursuant to requirements listed below.
  • Some prior experience with film review and critique. Programming experience is a bonus.

The Athena Film Festival encourages applications from people of all races, religions, national origins, sexual orientations, gender identities, gender expressions, and ages, as well as veterans and individuals with disabilities. We strongly encourage you to apply if you are from a marginalized or underrepresented group, particularly in the film industry.

Please reach out to with any questions. 

*Barnard students and alumnae are encouraged to apply

Our 2023-24 Fellows in action!

Jessica Vance (left) hosting a Q&A for the documentary Periodical with one of it’s featured subjects, Madeleine Morales BC ’22. 














Emma Warner (right) hosting a Q&A after a screening of her shorts block, ARTivism, with featured director Nitzan Mager (center) and actor LA head (left).