Ethics Internships & Fellowships

Mayo Clinic

As a result of generous gifts from Jim Vann '50 and Lee Stanton Vann, two Vann Fellowships for biomedical ethics research are available to Davidson College students at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., for 10 weeks during the summer. Fellows are selected through a competitive application process. The work of Vann Fellows is supervised by physician and research mentors within the Biomedical Ethics Program at the Mayo Clinic. The fellowship award is $5,000 (minus taxes), from which students are responsible for paying their own travel, housing and meals. Applications for the summer fellowships are due in the second week of January.

Examples of research topics that might be explored during the fellowship include:

  • Ethical issues in life-sustaining treatments and end-of-life care
  • Research ethics
  • Ethical issues in regenerative medicine and transplantation
  • Alllocation of health care resources
  • Professionalism in medicine and science
  • Ethical issues in genomics and individualized medicine
  • Science and society
  • Research related to clinical ethics consultation

At the conclusion of the summer fellowship term, fellows must report on the work they performed, their findings or insights, and their evaluation of the experience. This may entail a presentation to a committee at the Mayo Clinic as well as one or two presentations at Davidson College in the fall. Contact Prof. David Perry, director of the Vann Center, for more information about applying.

Human Rights Watch

Two ethics internships at Human Rights Watch (HRW) in New York City and/or Washington, D.C. are available to Davidson students for nine weeks during the summer, supervised by Zama Coursen-Neff '93, executive director of HRW's Children's Rights Division. The work may include press monitoring, desk research, drafting short background documents and correspondence, and other projects as they arise. Topics may include child labor; attacks on schools, teachers, and students during armed conflict; access to education; or other issues. HRW internships often offer direct exposure to the workings of an international human rights organization, interaction with other U.S. and international organizations, and opportunities to attend lectures, trainings, and special events relating to human rights. Applications are due in early February.

Each internship comes with a $5,000 stipend provided by the Vann Center for Ethics. The interns will receive information from HRW about housing options, but are responsible for arranging their own housing, travel and meals. At the end of the internship term, the interns must submit to HRW and the Vann Center a 5-page report summarizing and evaluating the work they performed. Contact Prof. David Perry, director of the Vann Center, for more information about applying.

Donchian Research Fellowship in Ethics

Davidson students in the classes of 2016, 2017 and 2018 are invited to apply for a $5,000 scholarship to support research this summer as a Donchian Research Fellow in Ethics (PDF). The scholarship will be provided by the Vann Center for Ethics, funded by a grant from the Richard Davoud Donchian Foundation. A stipend of $1,000 will also be awarded to a member of the Davidson faculty serving as mentor to the student with the winning application. This summer research project is meant to occupy your attention for 8-10 weeks. Applicants may be disqualified if they accept another fellowship, internship or job that will unduly conflict with this project. You and your faculty mentor must communicate at least once a week during your research and writing period.  Applications are due mid-March. Contact Prof. David Perry, director of the Vann Center, for more information about applying.