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Evan Cole (C’26) Awarded Dual Fellowships for Summer Research and Career Building

This summer, Evan Cole (C’26) will be balancing an independent research project and a competitive internship. 

The Institute for Responsible Citizenship recently announced that Cole had been accepted into the 2025 cohort of its Washington Program, which brings exceptional young men to the nation’s capital for two consecutive summers for an array of academic and professional opportunities. 

Cole, who is double majoring in government and economics with a minor in Black studies, has also been named a Laidlaw Scholar, which will allow him to pursue research related to capital investment in Black communities. 

“Choosing this program was a deliberate decision to prioritize my growth in settings that not only challenge but also expand my understanding of the world around me,” said Cole. “This opportunity allows me to engage with a talented group of thought leaders and change-makers, deepening my insights into how various fields intersect and influence societal progress. 

“It represents a pivotal step in my academic and professional journey, offering unparalleled opportunities to learn from and collaborate with like-minded peers. I’m hoping to develop a broader perspective and apply this expanded worldview in ways that drive meaningful change.”

Professional Development in Washington

This year, Cole is one of just 12 students, out of more than 1,000 applicants, to be selected for the Washington Program. He is the first Georgetown student to receive the honor. 

A family of three smiles and takes a selfie outside. The father wears professional attire and the daughter and son wear casual clothes.

Evan Cole (C ’26) with his father and sister on the Hilltop.

In his first summer with the program, Cole will complete an internship with Brown Advisory, an investment management and strategic advisory firm, this summer. 

“This summer at Brown Advisory, I’m looking forward to deepening my understanding of thoughtful investment strategies under the guidance of an esteemed Institute alumnus,” said Cole. “The internship aligns perfectly with my academic goals and is a crucial opportunity for me to contribute towards thoughtful investing. Additionally, the mentorship and guidance I have received from my mentor, Damien Dwin (C’97), a Georgetown alumni and the founder and CEO of Lafayette Square, have been instrumental in preparing me for this role.”

Founded in 2003, the Institute for Responsible Citizenship is dedicated to mentoring and supporting ““the nation’s best and brightest African American male college students.” The program includes high-level internships, seminars on economic and constitutional principles and networking opportunities, both within the cohort and with program alumni and leaders. 

“I created the Institute to provide some of the most talented African American male students the kind of support that many others in our society take for granted,” said William A. Keyes IV, the organization’s founder and president, in a press release. “We provide exposure to opportunities, valuable internship experiences and introductions to people who can support them in a variety of ways. We help them achieve extraordinary success for reasons that are bigger than themselves.”

Expanding the Classroom with Research

A Laidlaw Scholar, Cole will be conducting an independent research project alongside his internship responsibilities. 

Run by the Center for Research and Fellowships in partnership with the Laidlaw Foundation, the program empowers undergraduates to complete original research in their area of study over the summer with a stipend of up to $3,900.

In his research, which will be mentored by Caue Dobbin, Cole will be able to expand on what he’s learned in the classroom, blending together insights from economics, public policy and Black studies. 

“I want to uncover the systemic barriers that have historically limited investment in these communities and to highlight the substantial, often overlooked economic potential they hold,” said Cole. “I’m trying to explore and demonstrate why Black communities are not only worth investing in but are also vital to broader economic growth and social equity.”

When Cole arrived on the Hilltop, he had no idea that he’d pursue a minor in Black studies. All that changed when he took Zandria Felice Robinson  and Lamonda Horton-Stallings’ course Critical Southern Studies. 

A group of college students sit around a picnic table outside and share a meal.

Evan Cole (C’26) attending an event for the Black Student Alliance on Copley Lawn.

“That was the one that changed it for me,” remembered Cole. “I sat in that class and had several moments of introspection. I realized that this is what I enjoy doing: I love writing, I love literature and I love reading.”

As part of the course’s design, Robinson and Horton-Stallings arranged the semester so that it would serve both as an introduction to the interdisciplinary methods of Black studies and the most pressing questions of race and identity in the South. 

“That first year seminar was a real treat for us to lead and Evan was a significant part of that,’ said Robinson, an associate professor in the Department of Black Studies. “In a room filled with sharp, curious thinkers, seeing the literal light bulbs go off over his head as he made connections across course texts was such a deep reminder of why we do what we do.” 

“He brought a strong sense of place and community empowerment to the course, and his trajectory demonstrates how much the right combination of texts, with the right colleagues, at the right time, can unlock one’s purpose and open new pathways for impact.”

The interdisciplinary nature of the course, and of Black studies, lit a fire within Cole that he’s now pursuing, both in his minor and in his research as a Laidlaw Scholar.  

“We were reading Baldwin and we were watching Atlanta and it just showed me that there are so many different pathways in academia,” said Cole. 

Studying Atlanta, the award-winning show from multi-hyphenate creator Donald Glover, helped things click for Cole.  

“I always tell my friends, and this is so corny, but cura personalis is so real,” said Cole, connecting Glover’s disparate interests with Georgetown’s care for the whole person. “I came here with a one-track mind but I started to develop all of these different parts of myself.”

“Donald Glover is so many different things — writer, producer, singer. And now I want a taste of everything and I’m just putting my foot in all these things and just trying to see what sticks. I think, eventually, what I’m doing now will lead to finding that passion.”   

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