Undergraduate Fellows Program

A year-long student program on climate risk management, disaster resilience, and sustainability topics

This past year, the Wharton Risk Center has been piloting a student fellows program.  As the pilot closes, the Center is pleased to now formally launch an Undergraduate Fellows Program for the 2020-2021 academic year. The Center will admit 15 highly motivated undergraduates as the inaugural cohort. Becoming an Undergraduate Fellow is a one-year commitment with the potential to renew, based on a student’s continued interest and performance in the program.

The goal of the Undergraduate Fellows Program is to complement students’ academic experiences at Penn by providing education, career development, and practical engagement on climate risk management, disaster resilience, and sustainability topics that are relevant to private and public sector stakeholders. The program will build an interdisciplinary community of students interested in risk management and resilience. Student fellows will:

  • develop working knowledge of real-world challenges and solutions in climate risk management and public policy,
  • gain exposure to academic work on disaster risk management and risk finance,
  • become familiar with career options in climate risk management and sustainability fields, and
  • network with other students, faculty, and professionals.

Undergraduate Fellows are required to attend a lunchtime seminar every other week throughout the Fall 2020 semester.  Seminars will take place bi-weekly on Wednesdays from 12 until 1:15pm and are mandatory. In the Spring 2021 semester, students will produce a short-written product on an approved topic. This could take the form of an issue primer, a policy brief, or as a post for the Risk Center’s blog, Lab Notes.  This will require background research the student will undertake in the winter and spring. Students will continue to be given opportunities to check-in with their cohort during the spring semester and will do a short presentation on their chosen topic at the end of the academic year.

Additional information on the program is available here.  Applications for the 2020-2021 Undergraduate Fellows Program cohort are now closed.  The 2021-2022 call will open in Spring 2021.

Questions? Please email Helen Wiley at hewiley@wharton.upenn.edu.

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