The Tolan Fellowship supports one or more graduating Fordham Law School students annually who design proposals for work at an international human rights organization they have chosen. Established in 2007, the Fellowship is awarded to individuals with a demonstrated commitment to pursuing a career in international human rights law, and will enable them to gain practical work experience, while providing a modest salary for one year. The Fellowship is named in honor of James E. Tolan ’62, a long-time supporter of the human rights program at Fordham Law School.
The Tolan Fellowship was not awarded for the 2023-2024 year. Information about availability of a 2024-2025 Tolan Fellowship will be available in fall 2023.
Graduating Class of 2024 J.D. students from Fordham Law School are eligible for the Tolan Fellowship. Note that the Selection Committee is not required to award any fellowships in the absence of sufficiently qualified applicants.
The Tolan Fellowship provides a one-year stipend of $40,000. The funding is provided by the Leitner Center for International Law and Justice at Fordham to the host organization, which will pay the Fellow. Fellows must make a commitment to work at their sponsoring organization full time for one full calendar year beginning in September 2024.
Application Requirements and Instructions
The Tolan Fellowship is a project fellowship in which the candidate must propose a project of their own creation that they will undertake at a host organization. Candidates should contact potential hosts and explore the possibility of a placement well before the Fellowship deadline. Applicants are invited to design projects that draw on their legal education and experience at Fordham Law School and may address human rights, development, and justice issues anywhere in the world. Because of funding opportunities available elsewhere for domestic public interest fellowship placements, project proposals based outside of the United States may be the most competitive. Applicants are strongly encourage to contact Leitner Center Executive Director Elisabeth Wickeri (firstname.lastname@example.org) with questions or as they plan their proposals.
Information about Tolan Fellowship availability and deadlines will be available in fall 2022.
Applicants should submit the materials below in a single, complete pdf application packet to LeitnerCenter@law.fordham.edu with the email subject “Leitner Center Tolan Fellowship”:
The Tolan Fellowship Selection Committee will consider the applicant’s relevant human rights experience and academic performance, the value and potential impact of the proposed project, the capacity of the proposed organization to host the applicant and the relevance of the project for the career plans of the applicant.
The Selection Committee is not required to award any fellowships in the absence of sufficiently qualified applicants.
Interviews may be required for finalists.