Summer Fellowships in Housing & Community Development (for HKS Students)

The Joint Center for Housing Studies offers summer fellowships in Housing and Community Development to Kennedy School students. The fellowship, which will pay up to $7,000 for a 10-week, full-time position, gives students the opportunity to bring their skills to – and to learn from people at – non-profit and public entities in the United States that are working on issues related to housing and community development.

Students currently enrolled in a Harvard Kennedy School program who will be returning to school in the fall are eligible to apply for funding that will help support their work as a fellow, intern, or volunteer with organizations and entities. Students are responsible for arranging a 10-week full time internship, for proposing that placement in their application, and providing documentation indicating the entity is prepared to host the student. Joint Center staff are available to meet before you apply to discuss possible placements and projects. The internship could be in such entities as:

  • A city, state, or federal agency or office
  • The office of a mayor or another elected official
  • A legislative committee
  • A municipal or regional planning agency
  • A municipal or regional housing or redevelopment authority
  • A local community development corporation or other local non-profit
  • A national or regional advocacy organization
  • A national or regional non-profit financial intermediary 


Our 2018 Fellows were:

  • Erick Diaz, an MPP student, who is working at the Massachusetts Housing Investment Corporation (MHIC), on financial modeling and sensitivity analyses of funding plans for affordable housing projects.
  • Iueh Soh, an MPP student, who is working at the Mayor's Office of New Urban Mechanics in Boston on projects related to community development and housing in the Chinatown neighborhood.
  • Camilla Taufic, an MPP student, who is doing research for Andoma, part of the French housing authority in Paris, on programs that can better support refugees.

The 2017 HKS Housing & Community Development Summer Fellows are:

  • Daniel Black (Master in Public Policy) worked on the EveryHome Initiative, a community revitalization effort in Providence, Rhode Island, aimed at bringing blighted and abandoned properties back into use.
  • Peter Drivas (Master in Public Policy) interned with the Office of NYC Deputy Mayor for Housing and Economic Development Alicia Glen. Deputy Mayor Glen's team is tasked with overseeing City policymaking and operations on areas ranging from affordability, to the built environment, to small business services and workforce development. The majority of his work focused on facets of the de Blasio administration's historic commitment to affordable housing. Peter produced memos and slide decks on topics including employer assisted housing, modular construction, neighborhood rezonings, and ferry service.
  • Kyle Ofori (Master in Public Policy/Master in Urban Planning) worked with the Fitz Forward Revitalization team in Detroit as a liaison between the Fitzgerald community and a real estate development team leading a neighborhood revitalization project in the city. As part of his work with Century Forward, Kyle took part in a wide range of activities. The company was small which allowed the employees to share the responsibility for all aspects of the jobs, from managing properties to preparing a major project with the City of Detroit. During the fellowship, he did everything from delivering keys to a contractor to writing an article for Vice Impact. He watched and participated in discussions on a huge range of topics: financial literacy, renter displacement, public-private partnerships, and the Wonder Woman movie.

How to Apply

NOTE: Applications are due on Wednesday, March 27, 2019 at noon.

Students can apply via the HKS Common Application for Fellowships, which is managed by HKS's Office of Career Advancement. 

The application should include:

  • A short personal statement summarizing your interest in housing and community development and how the placement relates to your studies 
  • Your resume
  • Where you expect to work for the summer and what you expect to work on 
  • The name and contact information of the person (or people) who will supervise you
  • A specific funding request indicating whether you are seeking full or partial funding from the fellowship 
  • The names and contact information for two references

The fellowship’s stipend will be paid in three installments: an initial payment in mid-May, a payment in mid-July, and a final payment that will be made when you provide us a copy of a final briefing memo, report or presentation you made to people in the hosting organization.

For more information about the fellowship or to discuss possible placements and projects in greater detail, please contact James Chaknis, the Joint Center's Communications and Outreach Coordinator, at