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Pathways for Change Projects, co-sponsored by DukeEngage and the Kenan Institute for Ethics, are for students interested in spending a summer working in the fields of human and civil rights. This summer pathways opportunities are available in the areas of sustainable urban development in Seattle, education in Charlotte, and women’s empowerment in New York City.

As part of the Pathways Project:

  • Students will receive a $5,000 stipend
  • Students will collaborate with community partners serving as their hosts
  • Students have access to local alumni mentoring opportunities
  • Students receive a Durham-based faculty advisor
  • Students blog about their summer experiences

The application deadline for all Pathways Projects is January 14, 2020 at 12pm (noon) EST.

four students sit on a sidewalk in Washington Square Park that has scrolled in chalk,

New York

May 25 – July 25

Up to 4 placements

Working in organizations that primarily serve women and girls, students will consider the practice of current-­day policy, develop valuable context for the public policy challenges facing their generation, and reflect on the ethics of sustaining political commitments for reproductive health, criminal justice reform and women’s rights more generally.

Possible placements include: Lower Eastside Girls ClubLegal MomentumChoices Women’s Medical CenterSanctuary for Families

Sun shining through trees


June 21 – August 16

Up to 6 placements

Students will partner with nonprofit organizations to address sustainability challenges facing Seattle, a city rapidly expanding into a unique environment it seeks to preserve. Students will volunteer with a variety of organizations focused on environmental, economic, and social sustainability.

Possible placements include: OneAmerica, Solid Ground, Disability Rights Washington, Washington Environmental Council, Year Up Puget Sound, Treehouse

Group of students in tiger face-paint in a classroom.


May 26 – August 1

Up to 4 placements

Students will work with organizations advocating for North Carolina children and families through education, policy, and programs through placements focused on child welfare-focused policy research, youth mentoring, teaching, and family self-sufficiency.

Possible placements include: Council for Children’s Rights, Freedom Schools Partners, Big Brothers, Big Sisters of Greater Charlotte, Mecklenburg County Community Support Services