Summer Fellowship

SREE, in collaboration with EdFunder’s LEAD Impact Group, is pleased to offer the SREE Summer Fellows Program again this year. The purpose of this program is to connect educational researchers with philanthropic organizations seeking research information without having the time or expertise to access it and, in doing so, advance the use of high-quality education research. SREE student members will have the opportunity to spend the summer working on a 'real world' research project answering a question that the philanthropic community is asking to help inform their work.

How to Apply


The fellowship is open to current SREE student members* who have completed at minimum one year (preferably two years) of graduate studies, and who have not been a previous SREE fellow. Individuals who complete(d) their graduate studies in 2024 are eligible to apply.

1. Review the current projects 

2. Submit an interest form 

3. After completing the interest form, please send a single pdf document containing the below information to [email protected]:

  • your CV;

  • writing sample;

  • one page statement indicating the project you are applying for, how you would approach working on the project, your relevant experience (lived experience may be included), and why you would like to be a Fellow;

  • brief statement, signed by your faculty advisor, indicating their willingness to serve as an informal advisor on this project during the summer. Please note that this is not a letter of recommendation, but rather a letter of intent to serve as a resource for you on the project. A SREE researcher will serve as your primary advisor.

2024 Fellowship Projects

Project #1: A Review of the Landscape and Evidence of Effectiveness of Collective Impact Approaches

Organization: Ascendium Education Group


Project #2: Exploring Dimensions of Quality in Postsecondary Education: A Review of Evidence to Inform Prison Higher Education

Organization: Ascendium Education Group


Project #3: Data Rich, Information Poor: Identifying Policies that Enable Robust SLDS to Inform Decision-Making

Organization: Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation


Project #4: Scaling Trust: Exploring Best Practices in Data Governance to Enhance Public Trust in and Use of Education Data

Organization: Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation


Project #5: How Fostering Student Belonging and Connection is Changing Postsecondary Education

Organization: Crimsonbridge Foundation


Project #6: Assessing the Role and Effectiveness of Rapid Cycle Evaluations in Education

Organization: EdFunders LEAD Impact Group

 Anticipated Timeline

April 17 - 30                              Fellowship Applications Accepted - APPLICATIONS CLOSED

Early May                                   Interviews 

2nd Week of May                     Finalists Notified 

June 3 – Sept 6                        Fellowship Research Period


Program Overview

SREE Summer Fellows will be tasked with conducting a literature review on a selected topic and creating a 1-2 page brief in plain language on that topic that can be used by foundations, practitioners, and other users in the community, as well as a more technical review for other researchers. As part of the application, the prospective Fellow should propose an aspect of the topic on which to focus his/her summer literature review. The Fellow will work virtually and under the supervision of a SREE-appointed advisor, along with the support of his/her own graduate student advisor.  

Fellows will commit to:

  • Spending 8-10 weeks (320-400 hours) on the project conducting research and writing up the findings.
  • Participating in three check-in calls with the funder and/or SREE (initial, midpoint, and 2 results presentations), and an additional call with your SREE advisor to rehearse the presentation.
  • Maintaining communication with your SREE advisor throughout the duration of the fellowship and sharing all drafts with your advisor prior to sending them to the funder.
  • Providing the client with a research plan at the beginning of the project.
  • Providing the client with a literature review (approximately 20 pages in length).
  • Writing an executive brief (1-2 pages) summarizing the main takeaways for a philanthropic audience.  
  • Presenting at EdFunders and SREE’s annual conference on the final research findings.
  • Participating in an online Science Communications Writing Workshop on July 25 from 2:00pm - 5:00pm ET.

SREE will select an advisor for the student that will:

  • Providing general supervision
  • Giving feedback and guidance on both the brief and technical report

In return, Fellows will receive:

  • $8000 in compensation, paid in two installments
  • Feedback from the funder
  • A SREE researcher to serve as the advisor
  • Potential opportunity to present findings at both the EdFunders 2024 meeting and the SREE 2024 Conference 
  • Brief featured on the SREE website

 Expected Outcomes

SREE and EdFunders intend for the Fellows program to have several meaningful outcomes. It will make research findings more accessible to users, will help find gaps and needs in educational research that funders need, will provide a valuable opportunity for SREE student members to use their training, and will allow those just starting in the field to make important connections that will help them in their career. The briefs will be jointly housed on SREE’s website as well as on the EdFunders website to reach divergent audiences.

Summer Fellowship Webinar and Previous Projects

A webinar was held on May 29, 2020 highlighting two of the 2019 fellows and projects as well as providing information on the 2020 fellowship. View the webinar slides and watch the presentation

Previous Fellowship Projects


The LEAD Impact Group:

The EdFunders Learning, Evaluation, and Data Impact Group’s mission is to support GFE members to use data, research and evaluation to improve philanthropic practice, policies and strategies. GFE envisions that the impact groups “will continue to support communities of members with a common interest who agree to work together toward a common goal.” One of the LEAD’s common goals is the Summer Fellowship Program. Current Steering Committee members include The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, The Helios Education Foundation, KnowledgeWorks, The Kresge Foundation, and Trellis Foundation. To learn more or to join the LEAD Impact Group, please find more information here.

* If the membership fee poses a financial hardship, please contact Jenn Kush at [email protected].