Fellowship in Global Health & Development

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About The Fellowship

Gates Foundation logoThe Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (Gates Foundation) established a program with the Hertz Foundation known as the “Hertz Fellowships in Global Health and Development”.  This special fellowship provides not only the core Hertz Fellowship support (tuition & stipend for up to five years of doctoral study), but also provides recipients with an exciting internship opportunity—two successive summers in the Gates Foundation’s global health or global development programs.

This fellowship program began in the summer of 2017 and the Hertz leadership is very proud that Hertz Fellows, Rebecca Carlson and Alex Ferris, both bioengineers, were chosen as the first recipients. In the summer of 2018, the program expanded, with six new fellows starting their internships at the Gates Foundation. Initially open only to new Hertz Fellowship awardees, the program is now open to all Hertz Fellows as long as they will return to graduate school AFTER the last summer of their internship at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Though it is highly preferable successful candidates make a commitment to the internship for two successive summers, those interested in one summer will be considered. Internships will begin the summer immediately following selection. Applications from In-School Fellows can be submitted between December and March. All inquiries and interest in the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation internship program should be directed to the Robbee Baker Kosak, Hertz Foundation President:   rkosak@hertzfoundation.org

For more from our President, check out her blog post introducing the program, or the press release announcing the 2018 cohort of fellows.

About the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Internship:

  • Each candidate will have the opportunity to participate in the Gates Foundation internship program for two summers, based on performance and other factors, as determined by the Gates Foundation.
  • Internships are a minimum of 11 weeks per summer and generally no longer than 12 weeks. 
  • Interns will be placed in Global Health or Global Development programs (or their equivalent) as determined at the sole discretion of the Gates Foundation.
  • Interns will be compensated directly for salary during the internship period. The Gates Foundation will also cover internship-related travel and subsidize cost of corporate housing during the internship. 
  • Interns must be 18 years of age or older. 
  • Any compensation received for the internship at the Gates Foundation is IN ADDITION to the support the Fellow receives through their Hertz Fellowship.

Selection of Hertz Fellows for the Global Health and Development Fellowship:

  • Hertz Fellows who are within the first three years of their doctoral program or Hertz applicants who have reached the Finalist stage of the Hertz Fellowship selection process have the opportunity to express interest in the Gates Foundation internship. Those expressing interest will talk with a Hertz representative who will then prescreen potential candidates.  Recommendations will then be presented to the representatives of the Gates Foundation for final review and selection.
  • Following the selection of Hertz Fellowships awardees each year, the Hertz Foundation will select the most promising new and In-School Fellows interested in the Gates Foundation internship program to participate in interviews with representatives from the BMGF.
  • Final decisions regarding the offers of an internship are made at the sole discretion of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation personnel.  Notifications will be made by the Gates Foundation staff within four weeks following the intern candidate interviews


What To Expect

The Hertz Fellowships in Global Health and Development provides another avenue for the Hertz Foundation to continue its singular mission to identify and support the next generation of scientific leaders and innovators in the United States. In addition to receiving all the benefits of the Hertz Fellowship, recipients will serve as interns with the global health and global development teams at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation for two summers. The goal of this program is two-fold: To provide these top students in science, engineering and math with hands-on opportunities to learn about global health issues more deeply via work with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s teams and to inspire Fellows to contribute to these global challenges in ways that can have lasting impact.

Apply today!

Meet The First Global Health and Development Fellowship Recipients

In 2018, for the second summer of the Global Health and Development Fellowship, seven Hertz Fellows are interning at the Gates Foundation, including six Fellows participating in their first summer of the program. The goals of the interns’ projects range widely – from Alex Ferris and Judy Savitskaya continuing the project Ferris worked on last summer modelling plant-microbe interactions, to Alex Siegenfeld and Maxim Rabinovich working to understand and reduce the spread of malaria in Nigeria. Sarah Hooper, in the first year of her Hertz Fellowship, is working to improve malaria diagnosis; Reuben Saunders is focusing on maternal and childhood nutrition; and Ravi Sheth is focusing on gut health and disease and childhood mortality.


For more details, read the press release.

Rebecca Carlson

Rebecca Carlson will pursue her PhD in bioengineering at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in the fall. As an undergrad studying chemica ... more >>>

Alex Ferris

Alex Ferris is a bioengineering PhD student at Stanford University. Their broad interest is using synthetic biology to design and model genetic c ... more >>>

Sarah Hooper

Sarah Hooper is driven to improve health outcomes through technological innovation. She helped create multiple new medical devices during her under ... more >>>

Maxim Rabinovich
Born in Ukraine, Maxim Rabinovich earned his AB in Mathematics (with Highest Honors) from Princeton University. There he developed new techniques for ... more >>>
Reuben Saunders

Reuben Saunders is a student at the University of California, San Francisco. He is broadly interested in understanding how molecules, whose behavio ... more >>>

Judith Savitskaya

A computational biology graduate from Carnegie Mellon, Judy’s work to engineer microbes involves computers as much as test tubes. She is expl ... more >>>

Ravi Sheth

Ravi Sheth is a PhD student at Columbia University Department of Systems Biology in Harris Wang's lab. He is working on developing new techniques t ... more >>>

Alex Siegenfeld

Born in New York City and raised in Connecticut, Alex Siegenfeld developed early interests in chemistry, physics, and math. As an undergraduate a ... more >>>

Hertz Legacy in Global Health and Development

This is just the beginning of the Hertz Foundation opening the gates to improve global health and development. Check back in with us as we highlight more amazing Fellows and achievements in global health and development!

Fellows Working in Global Health and Development
The Hertz Foundation has a 60-year history of supporting brilliant minds in their quest to make breakthrough discoveries and change the world. Now is the right time for us to launch this new Fellowship because we firmly believe that technology and innovation can make positive impacts on global health and development. So do these Hertz Fellows.

Anna Bershteyn, PhD
Anna Bershteyn is senior research manager at Intellectual Venture’s Institute for Disease Modeling, where she is currently developing mathematic ... more >>>
Ruby Lai

Ruby Lai is a graduate student in the Department of Physics at Stanford University, where she is working with her advisor Benjamin Lev to impleme ... more >>>

Erez Lieberman-Aiden

Erez studied in applied mathematics at Harvard and as a student at the Harvard–MIT Division of Health Science and Technology. His work integr ... more >>>

Philip (Eckhoff) Welkhoff, PhD
Philip (Eckhoff) Welkhoff is the Hertz Senior Fellowship Interviewer and an officer of the board, as well as the malaria program director at the ... more >>>
Katherine Xue
Katherine Xue is broadly interested in evolutionary biology and has worked on research projects in biochemistry, microbiology, and molecular genetics. ... more >>>

Find out how you can become a Fellow!
Contact: Robbee Kosak Email or call 925.373.1642