Center for Ethics and Culture and Notre Dame Law School Announce New Fellowship

Author: Center for Ethics and Culture

The Notre Dame Center for Ethics and Culture and Notre Dame Law School are pleased to announce the Polking Family Fellowship, a newly established program to recruit and provide funding for top law school candidates who have a demonstrated passion for the Catholic mission of the Law School and who share Notre Dame’s commitment to the inalienable dignity of every human life from conception to natural death.

The Polking Fellowship aims to cultivate the next generation of leaders who understand that law and public policy are essential elements in building a sustainable culture of life. Recipients will receive a three-year scholarship along with the opportunity to work closely with the Center for Ethics and Culture, whose mission is to share the richness of the Catholic moral and intellectual tradition at Notre Dame and to project Notre Dame’s voice into elite academia and the global public square in the name of human dignity and the common good. Polking Fellows will participate in the life and work of the Center. They will be invited to attend and participate in special Center events, work with its visiting fellows, interact with speakers and guests of the Center (which has in the past included U.S. Attorneys General and Supreme Court Justices), conduct scholarly research, and receive special career mentoring and summer internship opportunities in the public and private sectors.

“We are thrilled and honored to offer this exciting new fellowship,” said O. Carter Snead, William P. and Hazel B. White Director of the Notre Dame Center for Ethics and Culture and professor of law. “Thanks to the generosity of the Polking family, the CEC and the Law School have the unique opportunity to recruit the nation’s top students who are passionate about building a culture of life while promoting Notre Dame’s distinctive goal ‘to provide a forum where … the various lines of Catholic thought may intersect with all forms of knowledge.’”

The fellowship was made possible through a generous endowment made by Paul and Joan Polking. Polking ’59 B.S., ’66 J.D., is a retired executive vice president and general counsel for the Bank of America Corporation. He is also a member of the Law School Advisory Council.

“We are so grateful to the Polkings, whose lives have modeled a steadfast commitment to the protection of human dignity,” said Dean Nell Jessup Newton. “This gift is a wonderful testament to the goals shared by the Law School and the Center.”

For more information or instructions on how to apply, please go to