The call for applications for the Education and Social Justice Project Summer Research Fellowship 2019 opens on Friday, September 21, 2018 and closes on Friday, October 26, 2018. We highly encourage interested applicants to attend the presentations of the 2018 fellows at the Global Social Justice Summer Research Symposium on Friday, September 21 and to attend one of two information sessions: Friday, October 5 at 10:00am or Thursday, October 11 at 7:30pm, both at the Center for Social Justice in 130 Poulton Hall.

The Berkley Center for Religion, Peace & World Affairs and the Center for Social Justice Research, Teaching & Service (CSJ) administer the Education & Social Justice Summer Research Fellowship. In early 2010, the Berkley Center and the CSJ created the Education and Social Justice Project to engage students and build knowledge about the deep connections between global challenges of poverty and education. Only through better access to education will the world’s poor be able to seize opportunities in an increasingly global economy. While policy analysts have documented the widespread failure of governments to meet this imperative, we still know relatively little about successful local efforts led by religious communities to advance economic and social development through education.

Undergraduate student research fellows spend three weeks conducting interviews on best practices at the intersection of education and social justice. During the preceeding spring, fellows are supported in their submission of an IRB application, trained in interview techniques, and prepared for field-based research in their specific sites. Local hosts are Jesuit-led institutions doing innovative educational work in support of underresourced communities. During three weeks of fieldwork, fellows conduct between 12-20 interviews. They submit a 20-page report for peer and faculty review upon their return to campus, as well as excerpts of interviews. They present their research in a recorded public forum and their final reports are published in print and online. The research fellowship funds travel, lodging, meals, and includes a $1,500 stipend.

Competitive applicants are in strong academic standing and specifically interested in international education research. Adaptability and flexibility are important characteristics, as fellows are typically placed in contexts with simple accommodations. Serious applicants should visit the project webpage to read past fellows’ reports and watch their research presentations.

How to apply: Email application materials as attachment(s) to with the subject heading “ESJ Fellowship: Your First Name Last Name”. Each application document should be a DOC(X) or PDF and be called your name followed by the type of document (ex. resume, transcript, etc.). 

A complete application includes:

  1. applicant’s resume, including global experiences and language proficiency;
  2. applicant’s updated unofficial transcript (screenshot is acceptable);
  3. applicant’s personal statement of no more than 250 words. The statement should not be a research plan, but rather a description of the applicant's interest in the program and related skills and experience.
  4. contact information (email address and phone number) for two references, one of whom must be a Georgetown University professor. Please state your relationship to/how you know these references.

Finalist interviews will be held in November 2018; finalists and required to submit a writing sample and a scan of their passport. Applicants must be in good academic standing and enrolled and on campus in the Spring 2019. Applicants can not be studying abroad in Spring 2019 but they can be studying abroad during Fall 2019. The 2019 Education and Social Justice Summer Research fellows will be announced in early December 2018. No late applications can be accepted.

Serious applicants are highly encouraged to attend an information session at the CSJ (130 Poulton Hall). More details to come. Please contact CSJ's Director of Research and Evaluation, Dr. Jennifer Rosales with questions.

Past Fellows






Carolyn Vilter

Carolyn Vilter is pursuing a major in Political Economy. She is passionate about education, accessibility, and immigration policy, interests which arose in high school when she began volunteering as an English as a Second Language tutor in the suburbs of Philadelphia. At Georgetown, she is a member of H*yas for Choice and a Carroll Fellow; she has also served as a research assistant at the Center for Social Justice and a coordinator for the Kalmanovitz Initiative’s Immigration and Labor Project. During Spring 2016, Carolyn was an intern with the State Department in Tijuana, Mexico in the Political/Economic Section of the United States Consulate.

Jonathan Thrall

Jonathan Thrall is a pursuing a major in Culture and Politics and a certificate in Religion, Ethics and World Affairs. Born and raised in Paris, France by American parents, Jonathan is passionate about the concepts of Identity and has crafted his major concentration around the themes of power, narrative and national identity. A longtime French tutor and aspiring academic, Jonathan has grown to appreciate the role of education, broadly defined, in shaping perspective and self-awareness and its potential as an agent for social change or, alternatively, an instrument of political power. In addition to his native English and French, Jonathan is fluent in Italian and Arabic; during the Summer and Fall of 2015, he studied abroad in Morocco and Jordan. He is currently a research assistant to Professor Yvonne Haddad of the Prince Alwaleed bin Talal Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding.

Sarah Jannarone

Originally from South New Jersey, Sarah Jannarone is an American Studies major and an Education, Inquiry and Social Justice minor in the College. After taking a gap year with City Year, an AmeriCorps program that strives to end the dropout crisis in America’s inner cities, Sarah discovered her passion for social justice within education. Now involved with Learning Enterprises, a nonprofit organization that sends international volunteers to 13 different host countries in order to teach the English language, she became interested in international education specifically. She hopes to study International Education after graduation, with a focus on social justice.

Khaliyah Legette

Khaliyah Legette is pursuing a major in American Studies and minor in Education, Inquiry, and Justice. Originally from New Jersey, she discovered her passion for education while serving as a tutor to elementary and middle school students while in high school. Her passion for international education grew after serving as a Project Ambassador for One World Youth Project, through which she taught a global curriculum with partner schools in Turkey, Guyana, Kosovo, and Pakistan to sixth graders in a DC public school. During summer 2015, Khaliyah was in Cape Town, South Africa tutoring and mentoring students through a program called OneHeartSource. Khaliyah is currently the Education Chair for the Georgetown NAACP, and a Project Manager Fellow for One World Youth Project.

Mariam Diefallah

Originally from Egypt, Mariam Diefallah is currently living in Doha, Qatar and is studying at the branch campus of Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service. As a member of the class of 2017, Mariam is majoring in Culture and Politics and pursuing the Certificate of Media and Politics, a collaborative program between both GU-Q and Northwestern University. Mariam’s interest in the relationship between education and social justice started when she was a student at a government-owned, Arabic-speaking public school in one of the impoverished neighbourhoods in Giza, Egypt. After travelling to Sri Lanka as a participant of a community engagement program to study themes of education and conflict-resolution, her interest increased. She was motivated to intern during the summer of 2015 at Teach for Qatar.

Past Education and Social Justice Summer Research Fellows
Year Name Location
2010 Ryan Covington Nairobi, Kenya
2010 Brian Dillon Manila, Philippines
2010 Cindy Chuck Santiago, Chile
2011 Deven Comen Mumbai, India
2011 Conor Finnegan Johannesburg, South Africa
2012 Shea Houlihan Gulu, Uganda
2012 Charlotte Markson Montevideo, Uruguay
2012 Lisa Frank La Paz, Bolivia
2013 Sarah Baran Buenos Aires, Argentina
2013 Annie Dale Battamban, Cambodia
2013 Nicholas DiRago Lima, Peru
2013 Elisabeth Lembo Krakow, Poland
2014 Kendra Layton Dhaka, Bangladesh
2014 Adam Barton Brazil
2014 Elizabeth "Hopey" Fink Ougadougou, Burkina Faso
2014 Gianna Maita Managua, Nicaragua
2015 Sabrina Khan Dakar, Senegal
2015 Nico Lake Gautemala
2015 Dana Drecksel South Korea
2016 Carolyn Vilter