ISPS Director’s Fellows

Students meet with faculty in the ISPS library

Undergraduate Domestic Policy Group

The Institution for Social and Policy Studies (ISPS) is Yale’s leading interdisciplinary research institution focused on the intersection of politics, policy, and social science. Through the Director’s Fellowship, the Domestic Policy Group provides Yale College students with sophisticated policy training and work experiences to bridge the gap between theory and practice in U.S. domestic policymaking.

Director’s Fellows are selected from among the most promising Yale College students with a demonstrated interest in government, policy, and political work in the United States. The fellowship takes place over the course of one calendar year, and consists of a mixture of skills development, research, work experience, and integration with ISPS’s ongoing engagement with the policy world.

Director’s Fellows graduate prepared to contribute to the policy discussions at the local, state, and federal level in the United States, whether through continued academic research and writing, policy development and advocacy, or supporting the work of U.S. policymakers directly.

The Program

Applications are open to Yale College students interested in academic research on domestic policy in the United States. The program runs the calendar year from January to December. Prospective fellows apply during the fall of their sophomore or junior year, and successful fellowship recipients will graduate from the during the fall semester of the following year. 

During biweekly policy seminars, Director’s Fellows will meet with ISPS researchers, government officials, and other leading policy experts. Director’s Fellows are required to locate, secure, and complete a policy internship over the summer. In their second semester, Director’s Fellows will complete a series of deliverables, including culminating a policy brief and presentation. 

Throughout the course of the fellowship, Undergraduate Policy Fellows receive sophisticated policy skills training from ISPS faculty and affiliates, integrate into ISPS research activities, and test their development through real world application and feedback, with a strong emphasis on writing for publicly engaged policy practice.  Politicians, top policy experts, and thought leaders in journalism will regularly attend meetings with Fellows, providing real-world perspective and advice on the practice of policy, research, and public engagement.

Please check back Fall 2024 for information on applying for next year’s cohort.

If you have any questions, please contact Kira Wishart (

>>> Back to main Fellowships page