Become a Policy Fellow

The Dyer Fellowship is sponsored by the Edgar Dyer Institute for Leadership and Public Policy and is available to any Coastal Carolina undergraduate student who is interested in public problems and public solutions.

Jump to: Overview | Student Benefits | Application Guidelines  | Dyer Fellows Reference Guide


Public problems sometimes demand public solutions, and CCU students need to have the skills to untangle, diagnose and solve such problems when they have real and long-lasting impacts on our communities, our state and our nation. Public policy is nothing more than the study of public problems, and unfortunately, problems of great magnitude impact not only the study of American government, but other disciplines such as marine science, education, poverty, criminal justice, sustainability, and business management. The Dyer Fellowship brings together a diverse group of Coastal Carolina University students to participate in an experiential exercise in public policy. Most importantly, the fellowship equips students with tools to be active learners and critical thinkers. For more information on the institute’s other areas of operation, please visit Our Initiatives and Work page.

Students who are awarded admission into the Dyer Fellowship program will be enrolled in POLI 397-Q, a zero-credit course that facilitates the fellowship events and deliverables. Students may take this course for credit if needed; please reach out to Jacqueline Kurlowski ( for more information on the for-credit course option of the fellowship.

Student Benefits

  • $2,000 research stipend
  • Access to a dedicated academic mentor in the student’s home department for guidance
  • All-expense paid trips to Washington, D.C. and Columbia, S.C.
  • Participant in workshop series throughout the fellowship term
  • Presenter at the Dyer Research Symposium
  • Dissemination of research on CCU website
  • Opportunity to present research to CCU alumni and donors
Workshops and Travel

During the course of the Dyer Fellowship, students will:

  • visit our nation’s capital to learn about federal oversite and policy process (Washington, D.C.);
  • visit our state capital to learn about state oversite and the policy process (Columbia, S.C.);
  • attend a series of workshop on how to craft a survey, policy brief and press release (CCU campus).

At the end of the semester, Fellows will have completed the following items:

  • Fully formed research paper on a policy topic of the student’s choice
  • Fully formed data collection tool (polling/survey)
  • Fully formed policy brief
  • Fully formed press release

Application Guidelines

Eligibility: Any full-time undergraduate CCU student is eligible to apply for admission to the Dyer Fellowship
Deadline: The online application is available on Sept. 15 through Oct. 1
Application details: Students may submit one application. Students are asked to identify a faculty member in their home department to serve as their fellowship mentor. A note about choosing a faculty mentor: Students should identify a faculty mentor in their home department with whom they have a strong academic connection and student-teacher relationship. Faculty mentors will guide the student through the application process and, once admitted as a Fellow, meet with the student weekly for the duration of the fellowship. Faculty mentors should have appropriate expertise in the student’s subject area of interest, (i.e. marine science, education, American government, poverty studies, terrorism, criminal justice, sustainability, etc.). Faculty mentors will guide the student fellow through the academic and research-based elements of the fellowship set forth by the Dyer Institute. Faculty fellowship mentoring should mirror an independent study and thereby ensure the student follows the guidelines set forth by the Dyer Institute. Workshops and experiential elements of the fellowship will be organized and directed by the Dyer Institute. 
Faculty details: Proposed faculty mentors are encouraged to assist and direct the student during the application process. Proposed faculty mentors have the option of submitting a letter of recommendation to Jacqueline Kurlowski ( by the application deadline. Please note: A faculty member may only sponsor one student fellowship application per application cycle. 
Application questions: Do you want to get a headstart on your application materials? Review the following application questions and begin working with your faculty mentor. The questions appear exactly as they do on the submission form: 

  • Student name
  • Email
  • Year of study
  • College
  • Proposed faculty mentor
  • Previous semester’s GPA (will be confirmed by the University Registrar):
  • Describe your policy analysis topic. Your response should relate to an element of public policy at the federal, state, regional, local, sub-local or community-level. A good approach identifies a public problem that demands a public solution/intervention, notes existing policy actors and key issues related to the topic, and references your (the student’s) conceptual solution(s) (750 words or less).
  • Why does this topic interest you? Please note your personal interest in and background knowledge of this topic. If applicable, reference relevant CCU course work that might have piqued your interest in the topic (250 words or less).
  • Optional: A letter of recommendation from your proposed fellowship faculty mentor stating your merit for acceptance into the Dyer Fellowship program may be included with this application. This letter should be emailed from your proposed faculty mentor to Jacqueline Kurlowski ( by the application deadline. Please note, a faculty member may only sponsor one student fellowship application per application cycle.  
  • Yes/No: Do you plan on asking your proposed faculty mentor to submit a letter of recommendation? 
  • You must agree to the following statement: I attest that the information contained herein is true and accurate. I promise on my honor to conduct research that is ethical in nature and that my work will be my own and not belong to other authors, students or sources.
  • You must agree to the following statement: I understand and agree to the terms of the Policy Fellowship Program, which includes my responsibility to meet the deliverables and deadlines of the program. My attendance and active participation in fellowship events and workshops are mandatory. Failure to comply with these terms will result in the revocation of my stipend and will compromise my status as a Dyer Fellow.