John Lewis Fully Funded Young Leaders Fellowship 2024-2025

The JLYL program seeks highly motivated students interested in pursuing a career in organizing work. Ideal candidates are self-starters unafraid to challenge the status quo, envisioning themselves as human rights defenders with a commitment to making a positive impact. Priority is given to students from marginalized backgrounds who face systemic challenges hindering their path to becoming advocates for human rights.

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🕔 Ends: 2024-03-10

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Eligibility Criteria

  • Undergraduate student
  • Enrolled in a 2 or 4-year accredited program
  • Enrolled in a university located in the United States

Preference Is Given To

  • Students attending an HBCU, HSI, or HMSI
  • Students located in the southern and midwestern United States
  • Students from marginalized communities


As a JLYL fellow, participants are expected to:

  • Attend the 3-day JLYL retreat with organizing workshops
  • Engage in monthly 1-on-1 coaching sessions with RFK Human Rights staff
  • Attend all monthly cohort meetings on the 2nd Monday of each month
  • Complete a capstone presentation detailing their project at the fellowship’s conclusion
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  • $2,000 professional stipend (paid in two $1,000 installments over the fall and spring semesters)
  • Agency to focus on elevating social issues
  • $1,000 in funding for events and activities related to the capstone project
  • Access to resources from community organizers and activists
  • Paid-for retreat in summer 2024 (location TBD)

The Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights organization strictly prohibits discrimination based on various characteristics. This commitment aligns with federal, state, and local laws, ensuring a diverse and inclusive environment for all participants.


The application portal for the 2024-2025 fellowship year is now open. The key dates for the upcoming cohort are as follows:

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  • Application Opens: December 19, 2023
  • Application Closes: March 10, 2024, 11:59 pm EST
  • Fellows Notified: April 15, 2024
  • Weekend Fellowship Retreat: June 7 – June 9, 2024 (location TBD)
  • Fellowship Start Date: August 15, 2024
  • Capstone Proposal Due: September 15, 2024
  • Monthly Meetings: 2nd Monday of each month
  • Fellowship Ends: May 30, 2025
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How to Apply

Ready to take the first step toward becoming a John Lewis Young Leader?

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John Lewis Fully Funded Young Leaders Fellowship 2024-2025
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