Since the start of 2019 through October 2020, the Program for Research on Religion and Urban Civil Society (PRRUCS) supported 186 fellows with 264 fellowships through diverse fellowship programs. These programs, which are listed and described below, include individual research and service projects as well as cohort programs in collaboration with the Collegium Institute such as Medical Humanities; Legal Humanities; Philosophy of Finance; and Theology & Scholarship.
PRRUCS-Perry Research & Service Fellowships: 39 fellows
Working with a PRRUCS senior scholar or faculty affiliate, each of these fellows undertake a concrete research and/or service-learning project that assist the fellow to identify, develop, and apply their distinctive talents, skills, and ambitions.
PRRUCS Interfaith Service-Learning Fellowships: 14 fellows
To what extent does religion contribute to civic service? Fellows engaged in these service-learning fellowships study texts related to service in a variety of religious traditions, meet and learn from local leaders of faith-based non-profit institutions that address social needs, work together on common service projects with staff and volunteers for a faith-based institution, and reflect together in a seminar-like setting on the relationship between what they studied and what they experienced during the service project.
Medical Humanities Fellowship: 82 fellows
What are the core values of medical practice, and have they changed over time? What is wellness in a holistic sense? How can a profession focused on health help us to deal with death? And how can art and storytelling impact the patient experience? The Medical Humanities Fellowship, directed by Dr. Margaret Hogan, considered these questions and more in a series of luncheons, each led jointly by a clinician and a scholar of the humanities. By the end of the semester, Fellows formulated a personal philosophy of clinical practice reflecting an approach to medicine which is human-centered rather than problem-centered. This fellowship program runs on a semester basis.
Philosophy of Finance Fellowship: 63 fellows
The Philosophy of Finance Fellowship draws together undergraduate and graduate students to explore the work of seminal social thinkers in order to address the fundamental questions raised by the practice of finance.
Legal Humanities Fellowship: 22 fellows
The Legal Humanities Fellowship program, which debuted in Spring Semester 2020, accepted a small cohort of fellows to participate in six sessions that explored the relationship between law and the good life. Each session was co-facilitated by academics and professionals in law, history, and philosophy. By the end of the semester, fellows produced a statement of academic findings and vocational discernment.
This Graduate Student Fellows program draws together graduate and professional students across the schools of the University of Pennsylvania to bring their respective academic disciplines and research into dialogue with the theological tradition. It features monthly colloquia, reading groups on specialized topics (e.g. Critical Theory & Theology, Tradition and Liberation Theology, etc.), and support for graduate student research and conferences. The theme of the monthly colloquia changes each academic year.
How to Apply
- PRRUCS-Perry Research and Service Fellowships (Paid)Check Back Soon for an Announcement of the Summer 2021 Fellowship Application Process.Click here to see a sample of previous fellowship instructions
Spring 2021 Opportunity with Nutritional Development Services (NDS):
Position to be filled by March 10. Click here for more information and to apply.
Meet the 2020 PRRUCS-Perry Research & Service Fellows
Carolyn Chow C’20 assisted Dr. Margaret Hogan, on the Medical Humanities Fellowship program. Carolyn helped research, develop, propose, and implement a curriculum for the Medical Humanities initiative this Spring Semester, and then promote it among Penn students and within the health-care community. Carolyn also worked with Dr. Hogan to co-edit her forthcoming book on medical ethics.
Lisa Eshleman C’22 assisted Dr. Daniel Cheely on a Science and Humanities Across Cultures project, working with Dr. Hogan to implement the Fall 2020 Medical Humanities Series and conduct a podcast that explored a new book about the Ars Moriendi / Art of Dying in contemporary medical practice.
Christopher Fite, PhD Candidate, assisted Dr. Cheely and PRRUCS Programming Affiliate, Ms. Jessica Sweeney, to augment an exciting new project in the field of Digital Humanities, entitled Genealogies of Modernity. Chris assisted this project, which “seeks to motivate and organize a critical, cross-disciplinary inquiry into influential narratives of the origins of ‘modernity’ in the humanities,” Over the course of the semester, Chris produced three original essays for the GenMod blog that explored various topics such as Francis Bacon and the origins of Modern Science.
Louis Galarowicz C’21, assisted Dr. Benjamin Brady and Dr. Cheely on a Humanities and Civic Engagement Fellowship, helping to develop the curriculum for a Food For Thought Module entitled, “What Good are the Social Sciences”, assembling the curriculum for the fall module of the Legal Humanities fellowship, and developing podcasts that explored the themes contained in both programs.
Taylor Hertzler L’21
Taylor Hertzler L’21 assisted Dr. Michael Breidenbach with the development of the Legal Humanities Fellowship program. This Fellowship took the form of a seminar series in which scholars and professionals in law, history, and philosophy facilitated discussions based on the fundamental questions that arise in the practice of law. The Spring 2020 semester focused on questions of religious liberty. Taylor also assisted with the coordination of an event entitled “Dual Allegiances: Christian, Jewish, and Muslim Perspectives,” in which a panel of top scholars from three major religious traditions discussed perspectives on religious and civil identity in America.
Andrew Lowrance C’22 assisted Dr. Janice Chik with work related to the Magi Project, developing a new course for Spring 2020 called “What is Life? A Philosophical and Scientific Investigation of Nature” that is being co-taught with Dr. Peter Dodson. Andrew also gained valuable experience as an editorial assistant working with Dr. Daniel Cheely and top scholars to hone their contributions to a forthcoming volume of PRRUCS Papers.
Mackey Lee Penny
Mackey Lee Penny C’21 assisted Dr. Daniel Cheely in the History of the Book in the Early Modern World project to conduct academic research on the publication history and cultural uses of printed Catholic Bibles in the Reformation era, and developed a research project related to the inter-religious use of devotional books.
Akash Pulluru C’20 assisted Dr. Mike Kane in developing the Philosophy of Finance Fellowship Program. He also assisted Dr. Kane with compiling and preparing to publish the results of the inaugural Philosophy of Finance Conference in October 2019, as well as related research and produced a final literature review of the work of Nicholas Nasseem Taleb, one of the most eminent public intellectuals in the philosophy of finance.
Sophie Qi C’23 assisted Ms. Jessica Sweeney in exploring the topic of The Art of Dying. This took the form of journalistic reflections, along with researching the history of this topic, from the medieval period to present day, and exploring its relationship to other fields, particularly poetry, literature, and statistics.
Princess Rahman C’22 assisted Dr. Melissa Wilde, Professor of Sociology, with research and writing about American religious groups’ views of the holocaust just before and after it occurred.
Nayeli Riano C’17 assisted Dr. Daniel Cheely and PRRUCS Programming Affiliate, Ms. Jessica Sweeney, to develop an exciting new project in the field of Digital Humanities, entitled Genealogies of Modernity. She assisted this project, which “seeks to motivate and organize a critical, cross-disciplinary inquiry into influential narratives of the origins of ‘modernity’ in the humanities,” with experimental web-design and social media strategies as well as with conducting research and writing on an original essay of her own on Modernism in the literature of T.S. Eliot.
Miriam Shah C’23 assisted Ms. Jessica Sweeney in exploring the relationship between art, philosophy and theology as part of the Ars Vivendi Arts Initiative. This took the form of selecting and discussing thematic concepts such as the responsibility of the artist, truth & reality, vision & inspiration, and exploring texts and works of art, written and visual, within these themes to develop a curriculum for a future fellowship program. Additionally, Miriam had the opportunity to work with editors and staff of Dappled Things magazine to learn about the ins and outs of running a literary journal, assisting with the submissions process, brainstorming topics she might explore in writing and assisting with social media.
Ayana Shirai C’23 investigated and wrote about a timely topic provoked by one of our seminars and special events. Specifically, she planned to attend and write about the Annual Anscombe Lecture by Roger Teichmann, the Anscombe Archive Exhibition, and the Women in the History of Philosophy Conference Sessions. When these events were postponed indefinitely due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Ayana worked under the guidance of Dr. Janice Chik to pursue independent research related to the work of Elizabeth Anscombe.
Andrew Sontag C’23 assisted Dr. Janice Chik on the design of a significant public event that would explore themes ancillary to her spring course, Phil 010: What is Life? He researched and identified speakers in the disciplines of science and philosophy who could discuss, from different positions, the mechanics and metaphysics of mind and the mystery of consciousness. He also conducted research to design and set up a companion workshop for high school students.