Create with Us
Become a Partner
The Fung Fellowship is a unique program at UC Berkeley that brings together undergraduates from across campus to address public health and conservation challenges through innovative technology solutions. Partnerships with professionals, community members, and organizations are the cornerstone of our program and critical for both student learning and impact.
The program hosts two courses each semester. During each course our students work in teams on real-world projects sourced from industry and community organizations. This is a great opportunity for organizations to gain fresh customer, design, and product insights as a fellowship team works on a topic of interest to your organization. Upon completion student teams will deliver a final report and presentation.
Type of Projects
The project should be framed as a challenge that can be meaningfully addressed 1 semester (~12 weeks).
- Early September: Fellows receive an overview of each project.
- Mid-September: Partner organizations present projects in-person to fellows.
- End of September: Fellow and partner project matches finalized.
- Early December: Final fellowship project showcase. Open to the public.
The second year of our program our students work in teams on real-world projects sourced from industry and community organizations that run from September 2020 to May 2021. The project should be framed as a challenge that can be meaningfully addressed in 2 semesters (~32 weeks).
- Early September: Students receive an overview of each project.
- Mid September: Partner organizations present projects in-person to students.
- End of September: Student and partner project matches finalized.
- Early December: Interim deliverables shared with partner organizations.
- Early May: Final student project showcase. Open to the public.
We accept project proposals on an ongoing basis. If your organization would like to propose a project, please review the project requirements and criteria in the project guidelines document.
Frequently Asked Questions
Our fellows select projects they would like to work on so we cannot guarantee that your project will be matched to a student team. However, we are happy to help you craft and deliver a strong and engaging proposal and presentation.
- Meet and form relationships with UC Berkeley’s top undergraduates trained in design innovations, health, conservation, and technology representing diversity of knowledge, experience, and disciplines.
- Receive widespread brand recognition on the UC Berkeley campus as well as throughout the community, through event marketing materials, fellowship pitch events, and fellowship website. Participate in events showcasing your engagement with the Fellowship program.
- Connect with fellowship faculty and staff on topics of interest to your organization and leverage their expertise and experience in this field.
- A Project Proposal: Ideal projects are strategic in nature, open-ended, and allow the students to apply knowledge they are learning in the classroom: e.g., digital innovation, health equity, living in harmony with wildlife, and human-centered design. The project should be framed as a challenge that can be meaningfully addressed in 1 or 2 semesters based on the course selected above. For example, “students are needed to help improve remote education in a small African village during the pandemic,” is more open ended and thus better than “we need some students to create some online animations for a remote education program in a small African village during the pandemic.”
- One Dedicated Project Advisor: Each organization is required to provide a company advisor/liaison for each project team. During the semester the project advisor should provide ~1 hour of support per week for each team. Similarly, each student team will provide a point of contact to streamline communication over the course of the project. Partner specific commitments will be established and agreed upon among students, staff, and company advisor(s) at the beginning of each project.
- Resources Relevant to the Project: Time and resources should be allocated by the organization to the student team for support and will vary depending on the needs of the project, company, and students. Any resources or data to support the project should be provided to the student team in addition to access to other stakeholders or customer groups if appropriate.
- Understanding of Confidentiality & IP: At the company’s request, students may sign a Non Disclosure Agreement (NDA). We do request a reasonable amount of openness with some aspects of the project to support cross-learning from our fellows. Intellectual Property (IP) ownership will be based on the requirements of the organization and nature of the project.
Some example projects are included below.
- BrainWalk: Neuro Test Tech Toolkit for Non-specialized Clinics
Partner Organization: The Bove Lab at UCSF
BrainWalk is working to improve the classic “Neuro Test” that physicians use to detect the onset of neurodegenerative disorders by integrating state-of-the-art technology, including virtual reality, eye tracking, voice recognition, body motion tracking, and machine learning algorithms, into the clinic. The end product will be a toolkit that can be used by nurses and generalists at non-neurology clinics to detect early signs of these disorders.
- BreakTime!: Active VR to Enhance Student Motivation and Attention
Partner Organization: Blue Goji
BreakTime! aims to leverage virtual reality fitness technology to improve student behavior, motivation, and academic ability in the classroom. Through working directly with schools, we aim to co-create a successful, viable model academic institutions to run active game break programs.
- ReRoot Wellness: A Platform for Connecting With Native Alaskan Healers
Partner Organization: Alaska Health Department
ReRoot Wellness aims to create an integrative platform to connect Alaska’s Child Wellness Services to Native Practitioners & Healers through Technology. An additional goal of this project is to bring awareness to non-Natives about Native health and wellness practices and ways to acknowledge and be allies/accomplices to Indigenous communities.
More details about project engagement is outlined in our Project Proposal Criteria, Process, and Guidelines for Partner Organizations.
“I was impressed with the multidisciplinary approach the fellows bring to key issues impacting health and their willingness to bring their diversity and creativity to solve challenging programs in healthcare delivery facing at risk populations such as seniors, children with chronic disease, and veterans.”
– Richard Roth, Chief Strategic Innovation Officer, Dignity Health
Other Ways to Get Involved:
- Pitch an idea for our design challenges where students tackle current, real-world public health or conservation issues.
- Be a customer connector and link student teams with customer groups.
- Mentor a student team and provide your expertise and guidance.
- Be a guest speaker in the classroom either in-person or virtually to share your expertise.
- Provide an internship opportunity for one or more of our fellows.
- Stay updated through our Fung Institute Monthly Newsletter.
While we have established several models to engage with the community, we are always open to new ideas for building collaboration and connection.