Community-Based Learning and Research (CBLR) Fellowship

In the 2020-21 academic year the Swearer Center will launch a new undergraduate fellows program to support Community-Based Learning and Research (CBLR) designated courses. The program is currently recruiting students and faculty to participate in the pilot year of this program. CBLR Fellows will support the planning and implementation of particular engaged courses. Fellows will serve as important peer mentors for students enrolled in the course to which they’re assigned, as well as liaisons between instructors, community partners, students, and Swearer Center staff. Students, faculty, and community partners involved in the pilot stage will also play a major role in evaluating and refining the program model.


CBLR fellows will receive a $1000 stipend for each semester. This leadership experience will ideally relate to their academic interests, support their sustained engagement with community partners or issues they care about, and further their skills in communication, partnership development, organizing and problem-solving. Fellows’ responsibilities will vary somewhat from course to course but will require approximately 5 hours per week and primarily include:

  • Providing peer mentoring to students around community engagement components of the course (e.g., doing mid-semester check-ins, holding office hours, sharing other relevant resources with students).
  • Communicating with the instructor, students, and community partner(s) about goals, logistics, and any issues that arise related to students’ community engagement.
  • Assisting in planning and/or facilitating critical reflection activities about community engagement with students.
  • ​Supporting longer-term engagement with community partners (e.g., advising students interested in engaging beyond the scope of the course, informing faculty and Swearer staff about partners’ priorities moving forward).

Each fellow will be responsible for no more than 20 students, so more than one fellow may be matched with instructors of larger courses.


For the pilot year, we expect to select up to 10 CBLR fellows. Any Brown University undergraduate with relevant experiences and interests may apply. While we strongly encourage students to serve as a CBLR fellow in both fall 2020 and spring 2021. Students able to commit for only one semester in academic year 2020-21 will be considered as well.


Short applications will be accepted on a rolling basis until noon on March 9, 2020. For more information, see the full call for applications and apply through UFunds.


Julie Plaut, Director of Faculty Engagement and Research at the Swearer Center, and Assistant Dean of the College: [email protected]