Children’s Environmental Health and Healthy Housing Summer Fellowship

THIS FELLOWSHIP APPLICATION WINDOW IS NOW CLOSED. THANKS TO ALL WHO APPLIED. MEET THE 2022 FELLOWS.

The environments where we live, learn, work, and play have a profound impact on our health. This paid summer fellowship program will give BIPOC students with an interest in environmental health an opportunity to intern with the National Center for Healthy Housing and the Children’s Environmental Health Network, two national organizations leading the fight for healthier environments.

The person selected as this year’s fellow will be invited to choose from a range of projects and/or submit their own ideas for projects related to a broad array of children’s environmental health and healthy housing topics and may take a variety of different approaches to addressing public health challenges (e.g., research, policy, training, awareness building, communications, capacity building).

Fellows are asked to commit to 320 hours of work (spread over 8-15 weeks) and will be compensated $7,500 ($15 per hour plus a $2,700 fellowship stipend to be paid in two $1,350 installments).

As a fellow, you’ll have the opportunity to:

  • Contribute to or lead one or more projects related to healthy housing and children’s environmental health.
  • Network with executive directors from two national organizations. Nse Obot Witherspoon and Amanda Reddy are both established leaders in the field of environmental health and healthy housing, with extensive experience and connections they are eager to share with the next generation of leaders!
  • Receive mentorship from a BIPOC nonprofit leader. Nse Obot Witherspoon has over two decades of experience leading a national nonprofit and is regarded as the nation’s key spokesperson for children’s environmental health.
  • Gain valuable insight into the role of national nonprofits in the fields of environmental health and healthy housing and learn whether a future in nonprofit work is right for you.
  • Contribute to concrete deliverables that both organizations will put into action and that will serve as examples of your work that you can highlight on your résumé.
  • Present your work to other professionals.
  • Gain work experiences with two national organizations for the time investment of one fellowship.

Depending on your individual interests and skill sets, you may be invited to work on projects related to policy, research, communications, training, awareness building, or community capacity building). Examples of previous internship projects include:

  • Drafting policy statements.
  • Helping to organize a Hill Day.
  • Developing an advocacy toolkit, promotional campaign, and webpages.
  • Being a key member of a team convening other organizations to develop a national policy agenda on a specific topic area.
  • Helping to shape and launch a policy-focused e-newsletter.
  • Completing a literature review to brief the organization on the health effects of wildfire smoke and presenting findings with staff members at an environmental health conference.

About the Fellowship

NCHH and CEHN are both celebrating their 30th anniversaries in 2022. The organizations have a shared history, values, and mission and love to find innovative ways to collaborate and amplify each other’s work. As we reflect on what we’ve achieved together over the past 30 years, we’re also excited about setting the stage for what we can accomplish together over the next three decades. One of the ways we’re celebrating our shared history (and shared future!) together is by establishing the Children’s Environmental Health and Healthy Housing Summer Fellowship. As the 2022 inaugural fellow, you’ll be helping us to chart new territory and shape the future of this joint initiative!

This fellowship is reserved for BIPOC candidates because, as leading organizations in the field of environmental health, we recognize that there is a disconnect between the environmental justice research and advocacy to which we’re committed and the lack of racial diversity in who gets funding and resources to perform that work. We also acknowledge the racism our BIPOC colleagues face daily even within the well-meaning space of nonprofits that seek to address racial disparities. We need to do better, and this fellowship is just one of many steps we’re taking to deepen our commitment to anti-racism within our organizations and our field. We are excited about the opportunity to equip, empower, and collaborate with the next generation of environmental health and healthy housing leaders.

About NCHH and CEHN

The National Center for Healthy Housing (NCHH) is a leading national nonprofit dedicated to securing healthy homes for all. Since 1992, NCHH has served as a highly regarded and credible change agent, successfully integrating healthy housing advocacy, research, and capacity building under one roof to reduce health disparities nationwide. www.nchh.org

The Children’s Environmental Health Network is a national multidisciplinary organization whose mission is to protect the developing child from environmental health hazards and promote a healthier environment. Today, CEHN is the voice of children’s environmental health in the nation’s capital, one that is uniquely informed by a strong basis in pediatric and environmental health science. www.cehn.org

How to Apply for the Fellowship

You can access a copy of the application questions here. Applications must be submitted online here.

While the online platform technically allows applicants to complete the process in more than one session, work can be lost if you use a different device, change browsers, or delete cookies between sessions. To ensure that work is not lost, applicants are strongly advised to develop their responses offline in a separate document and then complete and submit the application in a single session.

Eligibility

This opportunity is only open to those who identify as a Black, Indigenous, or Person of Color (BIPOC). If you do not identify as BIPOC, you should not continue with the application, but you may be interested in pursuing other internship opportunities with CEHN or NCHH. See https://nchh.org/who-we-are/employment-opportunities/internships/ and https://cehn.org/join-us/careers-and-internships/. Applicants for the fellowship do not need to be current students—we welcome interested candidates at any point in the careers.

Timeline

The application window is now open. Key dates for the application process and fellowship are noted below. Please see the “Fellowship Structure” section below for additional details about proposed start/end dates.

  • March 23, 2022: All applications must be received no later than 11:59 p.m. ET.
  • April 15, 2022: All applicants are notified of the fellowship selection.
  • June 15, 2022: Anticipated fellowship start date (flexible).
  • August 31, 2022. Anticipated fellowship end date (flexible). 

Fellowship Structure

Time Commitment and Start/End Dates
Fellows will need to commit 320 hours of work between May 15 and August 31, 2022. Fellows may opt to work full-time (40 hours per week) for eight weeks or choose to work an alternate schedule that spreads the hours out over additional weeks. Requests to take a break or reduced schedule for a couple of weeks to accommodate a vacation, GRE testing, or any other need will also be accommodated as possible. Actual start/end dates and schedules will be discussed and agreed upon during the selection process, but we do ask that you plan to spend a minimum of eight weeks with the organizations over the summer.

Work Location
Fellows will be able to work entirely remotely, entirely in-person, or use a combination of remote and in-person work. Note that in-person work will be hosted at CEHN’s headquarters in Washington, DC, and that staff from both organizations continue to work remotely all or a significant portion of their time due to COVID-19. As a result, in-person work may mean working in an office with very few other staff members present. There is a question on the application for candidates to state their work preferences. This question will not be scored but will help the organizations with planning for the summer fellowship.

Projects
Fellows will be invited to collaborate with staff from both organizations on designing a project or set of projects. If you have an idea of a project you’d like to propose, you may share that at any point during the application process. Fellows may be assigned to work on a single project that advances the work of both organizations or on separate projects for each organization. Fellows are not required to provide project ideas. Both organizations have plenty of ideas to share and will work with you on designing a meaningful fellowship experience.

Compensation
Fellows will be paid $15/hour and a fellowship stipend of $2,700. The fellowship stipend will be made in two installments of $1,350 at the beginning and midpoint of the fellowship. Please note that we will not require any documentation for the stipend. The stipend is meant to reduce financial barriers to applying to this internship and to acknowledge the expertise and effort you’ll be putting into your fellowship and does not have any limitations on what it can be used for (e.g., it is not limited to supporting living costs). We anticipate that each fellow will work 320 hours ($4,800) to be paid every other week throughout the fellowship. Total compensation (hourly wages plus stipend for 320 hours) is anticipated at $7,500.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Is this a paid opportunity?
Yes. The fellowship will be paid $15/hour with an additional $2,700 stipend to assist with living or other costs (no documentation will be required – this stipend is meant to reduce financial barriers to applying to this fellowship, but the fellowship stipend does not have any limitations on what it may be used for). The $2,700 fellowship stipend will be paid in two $1,350 installments at the beginning and midpoint of the fellowship, and the hourly wages will be paid every other week. The total compensation (fellowship stipend plus hourly wages for 320 hours of work) available is $7,500.

Do I have to be a currently enrolled student, or is there a minimum education level requirement?
No. We welcome applicants with all educational backgrounds.

Do I have to attend the fellowship in person?
No. There will be an option to complete the fellowship remotely or through a combination in-person/remote schedule. Note that there is a question on the application for candidates to state their preference and that in-person work will be hosted at CEHN headquarters in Washington, DC.

Do I have to have previous experience in environmental or public health?
No. The goal of this program is to offer a unique learning experience to those interested in the field. We know that people come to environmental health through a variety of backgrounds, interests, and experiences, and we are more interested in your passion for the topic than any specific prerequisite.

Can I preview the application questions?
You can access a copy of the application questions here. Applications must be submitted online here. Applicants are strongly advised to develop their responses offline in a separate document and then complete and submit the application in a single session to ensure that work is not lost while submitting answers through the online application.

Do I have to propose a project?
No, not at all. Fellows will be invited to collaborate with staff from both organizations on designing a project or set of projects. Fellows are not required to provide project ideas. Both organizations have plenty of ideas to share and will work with you on designing a meaningful fellowship experience. Fellows should be prepared to work on a project or set of projects that is meaningful and relevant for both organizations. Projects will be available in the following areas: policy, research, communications, and training.

Can I propose a project idea?
Yes, absolutely! We’re as excited to learn from you as you are to learn from us. We welcome your ideas and how they might enhance and expand how we think about children’s environmental health and healthy housing. Fellows will be invited to collaborate with staff from both organizations on designing a project or set of projects. If you have an idea of a project you’d like to propose, you may share that at any point during the application process. Fellows may be assigned to work on a single project that advances the work of both organizations or on separate projects for each organization. Fellows should be prepared to work on a project or set of projects that is meaningful and relevant for both organizations.

Why is this fellowship available to BIPOC candidates only?
As noted above, this opportunity is only open to those who identify as a Black, Indigenous, or Person of Color (BIPOC). As leading organizations in the field of environmental health, we recognize that there is a disconnect between the environmental justice research and advocacy we’re committed to and the lack of racial diversity in who gets funding and resources to do that work. We also acknowledge the racism our BIPOC colleagues face daily even within the well-meaning space of nonprofits that seek to address racial disparities. We need to do better and this fellowship is just one of many steps we are taking to deepen our commitment to anti-racism within our organizations and our field.

If you do not identify as BIPOC, you should not continue with the application, but you may wish to pursue another internship opportunity with CEHN or NCHH. See https://nchh.org/who-we-are/employment-opportunities/internships/ and https://cehn.org/join-us/careers-and-internships/.

Who can I contact with questions or if I’m having trouble with the application?
For questions about the fellowship, please contact Sarah Goodwin (sgoodwin@nchh.org) or Kristie Trousdale (kristiet@cehn.org). For assistance with the online application, please contact Sarah Goodwin (sgoodwin@nchh.org).

How can I get notified about updates to these FAQs?
Email Sarah Goodwin (sgoodwin@nchh.org), and she will add you to a list to be notified of any updates to this page.

Do I have to complete the application all at once or can I save my progress and come back to finish it later?
While the online platform technically allows applicants to complete the process in more than one session, work can be lost if you switch to a different device, change browsers, or delete cookies between sessions. Applicants are strongly advised to develop their responses offline in a separate document and then to complete and submit the application in a single session to ensure that work is not lost. You can access a copy of the application questions here. Applications must be submitted online here.

Will this opportunity repeat in 2023?
Yes! We plan to make this an annual program.