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Open to US citizens and non US citizens
Deadline: 02/09/2025 (Tentative)

General Information

The Undergraduate Perry World House Student Fellows Program is a unique, experiential learning opportunity—and Perry World House’s flagship undergraduate engagement initiative. 

Each year, 25-30 Fellows are competitively selected from Penn’s four schools (The College of Arts & Sciences, Engineering, Nursing and Wharton). The students’ range of talents and interests lends a natural diversity to the group, yet they have two important things in common: their keen interest in global affairs, and their commitment to collectively addressing a pressing policy challenge for a full academic year.

A focal point of the program is a year-long policy project. As part of the fellowship program, the student fellows break into smaller teams to collaborate on a policy-relevant research project on a particular global issue they identify under faculty supervision.

In addition, regularly scheduled seminars give the Fellows the chance to explore and analyze a range of other global issues throughout the year. An important element of the Fellowship is field learning—in Washington, D.C. and New York—where a robust agenda of meetings is arranged with key policymakers and other leaders in the global policy arena.   

Throughout their year as Fellows, the students become an increasingly integral part of Perry World House, benefiting from both informal interactions with faculty, staff and graduate students, and more formal, individualized research and career mentoring. The year culminates with a conference where students present their research findings to their Perry World House peers and colleagues. Students that complete the program are better prepared to be global citizens and ambassadors for Penn, and ready to embark on careers in international affairs. Additionally, Perry World House offerssummer awards for student fellows in the form of grants to offset the costs of summer internships. 

Eligibility Guidelines

Rising Penn sophomores, juniors, and seniors are eligible to apply. This competitive program is intended for undergraduate students from any school or department who have demonstrated a serious interest in exploring global affairs in depth during their time at Penn.

Fellows are expected to be full, in-person participants in all elements of the Fellowship experience and will spend around 4-5 hours per week involved in the program, on average. This time would include meetings with faculty/visitors, project meetings, research, and other activities at Perry World House. Becoming a Student Fellow is a one-year commitment with potential to renew based on your performance in the program and continued interest.

Application Details

The application is divided into two stages: a written application and an in-person interview. A completed application must include: 1) a CV/resume; 2) an unofficial transcript; 3) the name and email address of one faculty member who is willing to serve as a reference for your application (we will contact them, if necessary); and 4) answers to a series of short questions, uploaded in one document as a personal statement.

Interested students can apply using the online application.

Funding Type


Research Offering Type

Internship, Research Assistant



Undergraduate School

College, Engineering, LPS, Nursing, Wharton



Contact Information

The program is run by Melissa M. Lee, Klein Family Presidential Assistant Professor in the Department of Political Science, and Amy E. Gadsden, Associate Vice Provost for Global Initiatives.