Giving to Brown

New Undergraduates Inducted into the Society of Royce Fellows

Charles Royce ’61, P’92, P’94, P’08, surrounded by the newest batch of Royce Fellows.


A select cohort of undergraduates was inducted into the Society of Royce Fellows at Brown University President Christina H. Paxson's home on April 10, 2013. These research fellowships, given through the generosity of Charles (Chuck) Royce ’61, P’92, P’94, P’08, enable students to carry out independent research projects of their own design, regularly engage with their peers, and share their new-found knowledge with the wider world.

Speaking during the ceremony, President Paxson said, "The more I learn about the fellowship program, the more I think it is distinctively right for Brown.” The fellowships help students transition to scholars, she said, and even though scholarship is not without risk, the learning experience is valuable no matter where it leads. She concluded by thanking Mr. Royce for supporting the University in so many ways over the years.

Mr. Royce took the President’s remarks one step further, stating that the fellowships help Brown’s undergraduates advance from student to scholar to scholarship to be shared in the world. He hoped that the projects they had chosen would challenge their assumptions and assured them that the sharing process itself would better help them understand the world beyond themselves: “I am thrilled to be a part of this.”

Dean of the College Katherine Bergeron, Director of Royce Fellowship Kerrissa Heffernan, and 2012 Royce Fellow Julia Ellis-Kahana ’13 also spoke at the ceremony.

The twenty-five new fellows, the sixteenth such group, have chosen to tackle such disparate topics as:

  • Nerves, Nurse and Nurture: An Integrative Study of Nervous System Development in Siphonophores (making the biology of these marine invertebrates accessible to all through animated videos)
  • Tell Satu Qala Archaeological Excavation (analyzing glazed brickwork in ongoing excavations in Iraqi Kurdistan)
  • What Constitutes a Good End-of-Life for Korean-Canadian Elders in Toronto, Canada? (studying South Korean immigrant elders and their families)
  • Fighting for Peace: Using Sport as Intervention in a Brazilian Favela (investigating how community-based sports affect the pathway to crime for children in Brazil's urban slums)

Each scholar will be supported in his/her work by a faculty sponsor in the chosen area of expertise. In addition, six to eight faculty members participate as faculty fellows, offering the Royce Fellows support and guidance, hosting events, and facilitating discussion. And the program, in addition to providing up to $4,000 in funding that will enable the undergraduates to carry out their projects in locations across the United States and around the world, also confers lifetime membership in the Society of Royce Fellows.

“This is a wonderful experience,” said faculty sponsor Jan Tullis. “Brown students are already doing pretty incredible cutting-edge research. The Society of Royce Fellows helps students learn how to communicate without jargon and, equally importantly, how to listen. Chuck Royce has done so many wonderful things for Brown.”