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Shinnyo Fellowship Program

» Shinnyo Fellowship Program

The Shinnyo Fellowship is a paid 10-month fellowship for post-undergraduate Chapman students.

The Center for Undergraduate Excellence has partnered with the Shinnyo-En Foundation to support post-undergraduate Chapman University students interested in peacebuilding and service. Shinnyo fellows receive financial stipends to develop leadership and reflective skills to implement the Foundations' philosophy of peacebuilding, and bring this to Chapman University and local community organizations.

The following are suggested community organizations to work with:

Fellows come from diverse disciplines and backgrounds and they are all deeply committed to their act of service for peace building. The four other universities and institutions that participate in the Shinnyo Fellowship are: U.C. Berkeley, Seattle University, George Mason University, and Redwood City 2020 in partnership with Stanford University’s Haas Center for Public Service and The John W. Gardner Center for Youth and Their Communities. 

Shinnyo Fellows by tree


Infinite Paths to Peace

The Shinnyo-en Foundation's Infinite Paths to Peace Initiative is meant to inspire people 

to explore and identify how their values, talents, and passions can be used in the pursuit of a more harmonious and peaceful world. At the heart of this mission is a commitment to service. Service is defined by the Foundation as a combination of external actions, and the internal motivations that drive them. For this reason, it is important to develop reflective skills that allow an alignment of heart, mind, and action. 

Shinnyo-en Foundation logo

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Deadlines and Important Dates

Shinnyo Fellowship Open Hours

  • Tuesday, March 10
    • 10am-4pm- CUE Office

Application Deadline

  • EXTENDED: Friday April 17
    • 4PM

Fellowship Dates:

  • August 2020 - May, 2021

Fellows Summer Orientation and Annual Retreat:

  • August 6-9, 2020


  • Bachelor's Degree
  • Chapman University graduate from the 2019-2020 academic year

Fellowship Overview

  • Immersion in a 10-month Fellowship working with a selected community partner for four days a week.
  • Work at the Center for Undergraduate Excellence for one day a week. 
  • Introduce, implement and/or institutionalize the Shinnyo-en Foundation's philosophy of peacebuilding through service on campus and in the local community.
  • Attending and presenting at a peace building/community service-related conference.
  • Completion of a Fellowship Prospectus at the beginning of the year, mid-term report in December and a Final report at the end of the year. 
  • Monthly reading and service journal resulting in a final project which demonstrates how the fellow has journeyed to discover their personal path to peace through immersive service. 

Funding Package

This is a limited term non-exempt staff position scheduled to work 40 hours per week for a duration of up to 10 months.

  • Salary: $35,000 (Based on 10 month assignment)
  • Benefits package including: Medical, Dental, Vision (Based on 10-month assignment)
  • Funding for conference travel (limited to one conference)
  • This program does not include college credit

Required Application Materials

  • Resume or CV
  • 2-3-page essay addressing the following questions:
    • What makes you a good candidate for the Shinnyo-en Fellowship?
    • Discuss your own personal path to peace. How does your path to peace relate to who you are? Explain how you think your path to peace relates to the Fellowship. How does this align with the Shinnyo-en Foundation Infinite Paths to Peace
    • What community organization would you like to partner with on your project?
      • Why would they be a good fit, both for making an impact and for your learning?
    • What is your understanding of service to the community? What past experiences (course, volunteering, advocacy, leadership, civic engagement, etc.) that demonstrate your commitment to service?
  • Letter of recommendation from a Chapman faculty member
  • Interview

Shinnyo Fellows

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'19 - '20 Alexis Sutterman

Alexis headshotAlexis Sutterman graduated with a bachelor's degree in Political Science. She has spent the past several years involved in efforts to carry out peace, justice, and liberation. As a research assistant at Chapman’s Earl Babbie Research Center, she worked closely with two professors on their research on development assistance in post-conflict societies in South Sudan and indigenous environmental movements in Colombia. In addition, Alexis has helped promote civic engagement on campus as a NextGen California fellow, Fund Her intern, president of Chapman University Young Democrats, and volunteer on several local campaigns. Alexis has also traveled to Israel/Palestine as a member of the Olive Tree Initiative organization to train in conflict analysis and resolution.

In the next year, Alexis plans to explore methods of pursuing climate justice and ecocentrism. Blending the frameworks of deep ecology philosophy and decolonial political theory, she seeks to learn how to connect (rather than divide) the various political, artistic, and spiritual environmental efforts together in full-force. This entails encouraging ecological consciousness in individuals, community groups, and larger institutions. She hopes this will allow humans to return back to the Earth and to each other.

'18 - '19 Atty McLellan

Headshot of Atty McLellanAtty McLellan is a recent graduate from Chapman University with a double major in Political Science and Peace Studies, and a minor in Spanish. In February of 2017, Atty learned of a homeless encampment settled along a dried up riverbed that local authorities were clearing out. She began going to the encampment before and after classes to help people move their belongings, hand out water, and work with other activists to ease people’s stress. Through this and opportunities given to her by Chapman’s Peace Studies department, she became involved in an extensive research project, attempting to analyze Orange County’s homeless crisis through multiple perspectives and group identities. She continues this research, and is grateful to be working on such a thorough project that allows her to not only question the methodology of activist groups and local government, but to also examine her own philosophy towards activism and nonprofit work.