Skip Navigation
  • Home
  • The Steven M. Polan Fellowship in Constitutional Law and History

The Brennan Center will launch a prestigious nonresident fellowship program to enhance public understanding and appreciation of the U.S. Constitution.

The Steven M. Polan Fellowship in Constitutional Law and History will provide a platform for outstanding individuals – including legal practitioners, advocates, scholars, and other experts in constitutional law and history – to spur urgently needed debate over the proper understanding of our national charter at a crucial moment.

The Polan Fellows will be a pillar of the Brennan Center’s response to the U.S. Supreme Court’s turn toward originalism, a deeply flawed method of constitutional interpretation that threatens to roll back centuries of hard-won progress on reproductive rights, gun safety, racial and environmental justice, and more.

Importantly, the Fellows will also develop and hone new approaches that seek to reclaim our Constitution as an enduring plan of government, rooted in the aspirations of the Framers: “to form a more perfect Union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty.”

Proposals for the inaugural cohort of Polan Fellows are due March 15, 2024.
Click here to learn more and apply.

Note: Due to the part-time nature of this fellowship, this is a great opportunity for a full-time professional to do impactful project work. Currently matriculated students are not eligible.

The Fellowship is named in memory of Steven Marc Polan (1951–2023), a 1976 graduate of NYU School of Law and lifelong champion of democratic values. After many years of public service in New York City and State governments, Steve became a partner at Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLP, with a practice devoted to developing and improving public infrastructure. This project, initiated by Steve during his lifetime, is made possible through the generous support of his family.