Since its first international flight in 1927, Pan Am positioned itself as a world leader in American commercial aviation. Formed in 1959, World Wings International, Inc. (WWI) is an association of former Pan Am flight attendants that now dedicates itself to charitable activities. This collection includes the administrative records of the organization as well as scrapbooks, photographs, membership and annual meetings files, correspondence, and financial records.

The World Wings International, Inc. Research Grant is open to advanced graduate students, independent scholars, and faculty who would like to use the organizational records for research. Priority will be given to research proposals that will result in publication in any media. Up to $2,000 will be awarded annually to support scholarly research using the World Wings International, Inc. Records held by the University of Miami Libraries’ Special Collections.

Prospective researchers are encouraged to explore new areas of scholarship and inquiry within the World Wings International, Inc. Collection at the University of Miami. The collection is very rich and can support research in the areas of history, geography, business, sociology, gender studies, and more. We also encourage creative writers to use these materials to inspire short stories, poetry, novels, and even art work. The research should further the image of World Wings International, Inc., and encourage further study into the role former Pan Am flight attendants had in the history of aviation, philanthropy, feminism, and women’s business history.

Grant awardees will be required to give a presentation to faculty, students, staff, and interested community members either during the time of their stay or at a convenient later date.

Application Procedures

Applicants must submit a proposal of no more than two pages describing their research project and include a curriculum vitae or résumé. Electronic submission is preferred. A WWI Board Member will sit on the selection committee.

Application Deadline: Wednesday April 8, 2020

Please send inquiries and applications to:

World Wings International, Inc. Research Grant
c/o Jay Sylvestre, Special Collections Librarian
University of Miami Libraries
PO Box 248214
Coral Gables, FL 33124-0320

(note: applications will be reviewed after deadline, and recipient will be announced one month after deadline. The successful applicant will have one year to fulfill their grant requirement. Any applicant failing to make arrangements to come to the University of Miami within the year allotted will forfeit their award).

About World Wings International, Inc. and the University of Miami Libraries

World Wings International, Inc. is the philanthropic organization of former Pan Am flight attendants who seek to maintain the historic Pan Am tradition of global humanitarian assistance, safeguard Pan Am’s place in Aviation History, and promote friendship among its members through cultural and civic activities. For more information about the organization, visit

The Special Collections of the University of Miami Libraries preserves and provides access to research materials focusing on the history and culture of Florida, the Caribbean and Latin America. The department also curates the official records of the Pan American World Airways. For more information about the Special Collections of the University of Miami Libraries, visit

Past Winners

  • 2018: Matthew Hollow, “Learning the ‘Pan Am Smile’: The Politics and Gendering of Skills Training with Pan Am, 1945-1991”
  • 2016: Adelina Stefan, “Vacationing in the Cold War: Foreign Tourists to Socialist Romania and Francoist Spain in the 1960s-1970s”
  • 2015: Waleed Hazbun, “The Jet Set Frontier in the Middle East”