Graduates work for a public interest organization in California or D.C. and are matched with a mentor.
City of San José, Parks, Recreation and Neighborhood Services
Partnership for Public Service
Ravenswood Family Health Center
Redwood City 2020
Redwood City 2020/John Gardner Center
San José Mayor’s Office
The Representation Project
Graduates from Stanford and UC Berkeley work in a government or nonprofit organization of their choice, matched with a mentor to guide their professional growth and development.
Placement: Detroit Mayor’s Office of Workforce Development/Detroit Employment Solutions Corporation (Detroit, MI)
Mentor: Nicole Stallings, Deputy Director of Workforce Development
Nicole Jackson hails from Richmond, Virginia and is the daughter of a single-parent social worker. Growing up close to Washington, D.C. and seeing her mom’s work with homeless and formerly incarcerated populations have inspired Nicole to advocate for inclusive policymaking and policy solutions to help families thrive.
At Stanford, Nicole has studied issues of health and education equity through the lens of urban studies, and she’s currently a coterm in the Community Health and Prevention Research program at the Stanford School of Medicine.
Her passion for supporting working- and middle-class families has motivated Nicole to work on health care policy implementation. Nicole interned in the Obama Administration with the Domestic Policy Council and with the Office of Health Reform at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. She also served as a fellow at the Oak Ridge Institute for Science Education in the Office of U.S. Surgeon General Vivek Murthy. In these roles, Nicole coordinated with senior officials across agencies to support outreach and engagement efforts for Open Enrollment, the Affordable Care Act, and My Brother’s Keeper. As a student in Stanford in New York’s first cohort, she interned with New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio’s health policy team.
Nicole has served as co-chair of the Black Student Union’s Community Service Committee, an intern for the Food Sustainability Program through Stanford Residential & Dining Enterprises (R&DE), and Reunion Homecoming Weekend team leader. In addition, Nicole volunteers with Tutoring for Community, an on-campus organization that mentors children of dining hall staff.
Nicole received the Haas Center’s Urban Summer Fellowship, the Urban Studies Department’s Urban Summer Fellowship, and was named a 2016 Truman Scholar Finalist.
She hopes to use the Gardner Fellowship as an opportunity to work with policy professionals tasked with shaping workforce development and economic mobility initiatives at the local level.
Placement: Senate HELP Committee (Washington, D.C.)
Mentor: Andi Fristedt, Deputy Director of Health Policy
Originally from Los Angeles, Brian Kaplun is passionate about improving the health of marginalized and underserved communities, and he hopes to dedicate his life to tackling healthcare inequities. Although he was interested in being a physician starting from a young age, Brian became dedicated to public health after witnessing health disparities firsthand as a volunteer at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles and through his own family’s stories of their healthcare experiences in Soviet Russia.
At Stanford, Brian has worked at the student-run Arbor Free Clinic since freshman year, first as a health insurance counselor and community outreach coordinator, and this past year as one of the clinic managers. He has also served as a peer counselor and co-director of the Sexual Health Peer Resource Center; co-founder and workshop facilitator for the We Continue: Suicide Prevention Education Program; teaching assistant for courses including Tropical Medicine, Human Behavioral Biology, and Foundations of Bioethics ; a member of the Administrative Panel for Human Subjects Protection in Medical Research; and as a research assistant for the Stanford Center for Health Policy.
Off campus, Brian interned with the Human Rights Campaign’s Health and Aging Program, where he worked on the Healthcare Equality Index, an information and advocacy tool focusing on LGBTQ+-inclusive hospital policies; at Pangaea Global AIDS, where he studied the HIV treatment and prevention policy landscape for marginalized communities in Zimbabwe; and at Kaiser Family Foundation, where he conducted analyses of the Affordable Care Act insurance exchanges and wrote issue briefs about the HIV epidemic in the United States.
Brian has been recognized with a number of awards and honors, including membership in the Haas Center’s Public Service Honor Society, the Haas Center’s Huffington Pride and Sandhill Fellowships, the Point Foundation and Markowski Leach Scholarships, and admission to the FlexMed early acceptance program at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai.
For his Gardner Fellowship, Brian seeks to gain more insight about the programs and policies that affect healthcare delivery and outcomes, and to better understand how these initiatives are implemented and evaluated.
Placement: Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry (Washington, D.C.)
Mentor: Joseph Shultz, Staff Director
Riya Mehta grew up in Overland Park, Kansas, 20 minutes away from commercial corn and wheat farms. As a volunteer at her local food bank, she saw firsthand that hunger pains are often sharpest in rural communities. At Stanford, she has focused on understanding the root causes of hunger, along with various strategies to alleviate it.
As an intern at the United Nations World Food Programme, Riya learned about the organization’s efforts to deliver nutritious foods to populations on the brink of starvation in some of the most politically unstable and drought-stricken corners of the world. Through her volunteer work at the Stanford Educational Farm, Riya has gained insight into specific land management practices that can help build resilient and productive farming systems. At the same time, both her community-based fieldwork in Hawai’i and her policy-driven legal research at the Landesa Rural Development Institute have shown her that achieving food security depends on social, political, and economic factors determined outside the perimeters of a farmer’s plot. These experiences have instilled in her a desire to help create and implement more equitable agricultural laws and policies.
Riya has been recognized with a number of university leadership roles and honors. She served as the only undergraduate student on the Stanford School of Earth, Energy, & Environmental Sciences Dean Search Committee, and she currently represents the Earth Systems program on the Stanford Earth Undergraduate Council. She also has held various leadership positions in Stanford in Government, including director of the Public Policy Forum and director of Strategic Planning. Riya is a member of the Public Service Honors Society and an honors thesis candidate in the Center on Democracy, Development, and the Rule of Law.
Through her Gardner Fellowship, Riya hopes to immerse herself in projects that take a long-term and multidisciplinary approach to achieving food security.
Graduates work with a preselected global organization advancing good governance, development, and the rule of law. (Administered by Stanford's Center on Democracy, Development and the Rule of Law.)
Placement: Save the Children International, Lebanon Country Office (Beirut, Lebanon)
Mentor: Allison Zelkowitz, Lebanon Country Director
Hometown: Dorado, Puerto Rico
Service interests: Human rights protection; transitional justice; access to legal aid; immigration and asylum relief
Stanford experience: Minor in human rights, capstone (in progress): "Criminal Liability for Atrocity Crimes: An Analysis of Puerto Rico's Crimes Against Humanity Legislation"; co-president of Stanford Music + Mentorship; translation and interpretation volunteer with the Stanford Immigrants' Rights Clinic and the Immigration Pro Bono Project; independent fundraising for Hurricane María relief; teaching volunteer for Stanford Splash (taught high schoolers courses on international justice and asylum)
Other service experience: Human Rights Fellow with the WSD Handa Center for Human Rights and International Justice; Public Interest Law Fellow with the Haas Center for Public Service
Fellowship goals: To work with victims of human rights abuses—particularly refugees from the Middle East North Africa (MENA) region—to learn about and address their needs; to explore how legal aid, policy work, and/or humanitarian action can best be targeted in defense of refugees and other vulnerable populations
Graduates work in a mentored position at a host foundation and learn about the role of philanthropy in society.
Placement: International Women’s Health Coalition (New York City, NY)
Mentor: Françoise Girard, President
Hometown: Oakland, CA
Service interests: Prevention of gender-based violence; improvement of women’s access to reproductive healthcare and family planning services; advancement of women’s economic opportunities in low-resource settings; security and human rights in conflict and post-conflict settings
Stanford experience: 2018 Deans’ Award for Academic Achievement; teaching assistant for Theories and Practices of Civil Society, Philanthropy, and the Nonprofit Sector; Cardinal Quarter peer advisor at the Haas Center; co-chair of the Senior Class Gift Committee; undergraduate representative on the Stanford Board of Trustees Development Committee; Stanford Women’s Coalition director of internal operations; member of the WSD HANDA Center for Human Rights and International Justice Student Advisory Board, HELP4Kids, and Women and Youth Supporting Each Other; Stanford in Oxford; Stanford Overseas Seminar in Madagascar
Other service experience: Research assistant at TeachAIDS; Sand Hill Fellow on the Skoll Foundation’s Portfolio and Investments Team
Fellowship goals: To better understand the interplay between women’s health, gender inequality, and sustainable development; to learn about systems-change approaches to promoting human rights in challenging settings and ecosystems; and to explore effective philanthropic strategies for empowering women as agents of change within their communities
Placement: Laura and John Arnold Foundation (New York City, NY)
Mentor: Jeremy Travis, Executive Vice President of Criminal Justice
Hometown: Zion, Il
Service interests: Civil rights law, collateral consequences of incarceration, and the role of criminal justice reform in disrupting the cycles of intergenerational poverty
Stanford experience: All-staff coordinator for the Bridge Peer Counseling Center; Stanford in Washington; teaching assistant and peer advisor for the Public Policy Department; research intern with the Stanford Criminal Justice Center
Other service experience: Stanford in Government Fellow with the California Department of Finance, research intern for Impact Justice and RTI International, and policy intern for the Imani Ghana Centre for Policy and Education
Fellowship goals: To survey the landscape of criminal justice reform and learn about philanthropy’s unique role in effecting social change; to gain the tools and connections necessary to address the root causes of inequality and injustice in my future work
Placement: Chan Zuckerberg Initiative (Palo Alto, CA)
Mentor: Brooke Stafford-Brizard, Director of Education
Hometown: Santa Fe, NM
Service interests: To create a more equitable education system; to improve access to educational opportunities for minority and low-income students
Stanford experience: President of the Stanford Pre-Education Society; Haas Center for Public Service National Advisory Board member; teaching fellow with East Palo Alto Stanford Academy; Public Service Honor Society member; outreach director for Undergraduate Fellowships; community-based researcher with East Palo Alto Academy; volunteer Spanish-English interpreter
Other service experience: Urban Summer Fellow with the New York City Coalition for Educational Justice; Campus Compact national Newman Civic Fellow; Education Achievement Fellow with the Community Foundation of Boulder, CO; teaching fellow with the Breakthrough Collaborative in Santa Fe, NM
Fellowship goals: To gain a macro-level understanding of the systematic nature of educational disparities; to learn how funding decisions are made in order to have the greatest positive impact; to understand how organizational collaborations across the field of education can create a more equitable system
For more information about post-undergraduate fellowship opportunities, please contact Juaquín Sims at the Haas Center.