Pinkerton Fellowship Initiative

The Pinkerton Fellowship Initiative (PFI) was launched in 2012 in partnership with the Pinkerton Foundation. The fellowship offers John Jay College undergraduate students the opportunity to gain hands-on experience in the juvenile justice field. The Fellowship combines service and scholarship for John Jay College undergraduate students interested in careers in juvenile justice and direct service. Pinkerton Fellows engage in rigorous academic work and complete placements at leading nonprofit agencies committed to serving New York City’s justice-involved youth. Click here to learn more about current and past Pinkerton Fellows.

Community-Based Placements
Fellows complete intensive 12 to 15-month internships at community-based organizations that focus on youth justice. Fellows work full-time (35 hours per week) at their host sites during summers and John Jay’s January break, and part-time (14 hours per week) during the fall and spring semesters.

Academic Coursework
To complement their fieldwork experiences, Pinkerton Fellows also take a two-semester, 12-credit upper-level undergraduate course in sociology (UGR 390-91) taught by top John Jay faculty and prominent leaders in the New York justice community. The practicum exposes Fellows to various aspects of youth justice, including interventions for justice-involved youth and the policy context for youth-oriented direct service programs. 

Professional Development
The Institute hosts workshops and trainings for Fellows and host site staff members in addition to Youth Justice Symposia to enrich the field as a whole.


  • Stipend of up to $12,750, consisting of $3,500 for the first summer, $2,000 for each semester, $1,000 for the January break, and $4,250 for the second summer
  • Monthly MetroCards throughout the course of the fellowship
  • An opportunity grant of up to $1,000 to alleviate financial burdens that arise during the fellowship
  • One-on-one career coaching

Eligibility Criteria
Prospective Pinkerton Fellows must:

  • Be John Jay College juniors or seniors. (Candidates should apply as sophomores or juniors.)
  • Have a GPA of a 3.0 or higher
  • Demonstrate interest in youth justice and direct service