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Open to US citizens and non US citizens
Deadline: 02/27/2024 (Tentative)

We’re accepting applications to the Fellows program in two rounds. Students who wish to apply for the first round may submit their application up through Sunday, January 30. Students applying in the second round have through Sunday, February 27. Current first year students are eligible to apply to the program. Selected Fellows participate in the program for three years, from their sophomore through senior year. Students can apply here.

At its best, higher education prepares students for living productive and fulfilling personal, professional, and civic lives. One of the most important roles of a university is to encourage open dialogue, the free exchange of ideas, and civil and robust expression of divergent views, on campus and around the world. This mission has never been more important than it is today, when social, cultural, economic and political divides—and the inability to talk across them in constructive ways—strain the very fabric of civil society and democracy.

SNF Paideia Fellows are a select group of undergraduate students committed to developing the knowledge, skills, and values needed for effective, ethical, and civil dialogue in a diverse world. Fellows develop a small, close-knit, and academically diverse scholarly community over the course of their three years (sophomore – senior year) in the program. Far from being insular, the scholarly community formed by the fellows is constantly looking to connect and converse with other entities at Penn and beyond, pursuing integration where there is fragmentation.

Through academic courses, co-curricular events, and hands-on learning experiences, SNF Paideia Fellows will:

  • Examine the theory and practice of dialogue across differences and apply a dialogue lens to issues of citizenship, community service, and individual and community wellness;
  • Integrate their public roles as citizens into their academic, personal, and professional lives in healthy, sustainable, and fulfilling ways;
  • Participate in curricular and co-curricular opportunities (directly through the SNF Paideia Program as well as the many other relevant organizations and programs at Penn) designed to equip students with the tools necessary for effectively contributing to the local, national and global communities of which they are a part.


SNF Paideia Fellows will:

  • Participate in a sophomore year and junior year seminar designed to build skills and community among the Fellows. These half credit seminars provide Fellows with the opportunity to explore their own personal, professional, and civic identities in conversation with relevant academic research.
  • Take three Paideia designated courses focusing on relevant aspects of dialogue across differences, public service, and personal and social wellness. These courses may fulfill additional requirements in a student’s major or school.
  • Complete a Senior Capstone project that integrates a Fellow’s major with civic dialogue, service, and/or wellness. This would include participation in Senior Capstone Workshops, held in the spring of junior year and fall of senior year, and designed to help develop and execute their unique SNF Paideia Capstone Project.
  • In addition, SNF Paideia Fellows will have the opportunity to:
    • Help plan and attend co-curricular events related to issues of dialogue, wellness, service, and citizenship, and designed exclusively for SNF Paideia Fellows.
    • Serve as student facilitators at SNF Paideia-sponsored campus events, and as mentors to future classes of SNF Paideia Fellows.
    • Cultivate a broad network among students, faculty members, and staff at Penn who share a commitment to the themes of the SNF Paideia Program.
    • Complete a summer internship related to issues of public dialogue, service, and/or wellness.

Paideia designated courses will be noted on a student’s transcript, and those who successfully complete the Paideia Fellows Program will receive an SNF Paideia Program Certificate.


SNF Paideia Fellows can apply for up to $4,000 a year to cover costs associated with their academic and service work that relate to the mission of the SNF Paideia Program. This could include class and capstone related research and travel; service, civic dialogue, and/or wellness related projects; and/or stipends. In addition, stipend and housing support is available for summer internships (typically the summer after junior year).


Research Offering Type

Grant, Internship



Undergraduate School

College, Engineering, Nursing, Wharton



Contact Information

Contact Leah Anderson,, the Executive Director of the SNF Paideia Program, with questions.