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Community Development Fellowships

Fist Bump TNI

The Thriving Neighbors Initiative (TNI) Community Development Fellowship is a paraprofessional community-based learning experience, which allows undergraduate students to obtain professional work experience while pursuing defined learning goals and objectives. Social justice-oriented engagement with the community to enhance vocational discernment is the cornerstone of the program. The year-long opportunity offers an in-depth exploration of community partners and services which will be hosted at community partner agencies within the Greater Washington Neighborhood, home to the Thriving Neighbors Initiative. TNI is an initiative promoting engaged scholarship, teaching, and sustainable development facilitated by SCU’s Ignatian Center for Jesuit Education. The initial focus of the TNI is on the five, predominantly Latino neighborhoods that make up the Greater Washington community in San Jose.

The program provides juniors and seniors with a rich and deep experience in the local community. Fellows are matched with a community partner for a full academic year, spending an average of six to eight hours per week in the community. The fellowship is designed to meet the needs of community partners but also to help fellows delve into individual passions and areas of interest. As liaisons, fellows serve as a resource for other SCU students doing community development work in the context of the Arrupe Weekly Engagement Program while learning more about a profession in the public and non-profit sectors.

  • Must be a current sophomore or junior in good academic standing (2.5 GPA or better)
  • Must have previous experience working/learning with the community, preferably through the Ignatian Center
  • Must be able to commit six to 10 hours per week for a full academic year (includes travel time to/from site)

Community Engagement

  • Engage in the community for six to ten hours per week throughout the academic year (September to June) at host agency site
  • Identify host organization opportunities that align with Thriving Neighbors goals
  • In conversation with your host organization, propose and produce a final project to be presented at year-end celebration
  • Serve as liaison between the Ignatian Center and the host organization

Student Leadership

  • Co-facilitate quarterly orientations and lead student reflections for Arrupe Weekly Engagement.
  • Serve as a resource and mentor for SCU students who participate at the host organization in Arrupe Weekly Engagement
  • Participate in bi-weekly fellowship meetings and quarterly site supervisor meetings
  • Attend two student leader retreats (fall and spring)
  • Assist with ignatian Center events, as appropriate

Interns receive a modest stipend.

2018-2019 Community Development Fellows

Santa Maria Urban Ministry

CORAL at Washington Elementary

Samantha Bailey '20image

Samantha Bailey '20

Psychology, Child Studies

Violet Daane '19image

Violet Daane '19


Sacred Heart Community Service

CET Sobrato Vocational Training Center

Areli Hernandez '19image

Areli Hernandez '19

Political Science, Spanish, Ethnic Studies

Sacred Heart Community Service


Jon Tuttle '21image

Jon Tuttle '21

Political Science, Spanish

Past Fellows

Katie Reohr '18 Sacred Heart Community Service
Makinzi Myers '18 Estrella Family Services
Maria Muñoz-Yepez '19 Cristo Rey San Jose Jesuit High School

Application Schedule

Stay tuned for applications! Questions? Contact us.