Over the past 30 years, the American Political Science Association’s Ralph Bunche Summer Institute (RBSI) has inspired over 500 undergraduate students to pursue academic careers in political science by providing graduate-level coursework in research methodology, and racial and ethnic politics. Established in 1986 and originally called the APSA Summer Institute for Blacks in Political Science, the RBSI was a jointly sponsored program run by Southern University and Louisiana State University. Between 1988-1989, the program was renamed for Ralph J. Bunche, the first African American to earn a PhD in political science. Today, more than 100 RBSI Scholars have earned PhDs in political science with countless others pursuing advanced degrees.
APSA Bunche Fund Reaches $2.5 Million Goal
Fall 2021 - The American Political Science Association (APSA) is very pleased to announce that we have reached the Ralph J. Bunche Fund development goal of $2.5 Million. We wish to offer a special thank you to those who contributed to the Bunche Generation to Generation Fund since its establishment in 2013, namely the RBSI Class Leaders and Alumni, DFP Alumni, APSA members, political science departments, Friends of the APSA Diversity and Inclusion Programs, and APSA (In 2016, the APSA Council approved a generous foundational contribution to the Fund), among other sources. To date over 500 donors have made 936 contributions to the Fund. The Fund will help support the future of the RBSI Program at Duke, as well as future Bunche programming. APSA’s priority is to fully fund the Ralph Bunche Summer Institute not only for this year or next year but for generations of students to come. Bunche Alumni have and will continue to contribute a diverse collection of innovative ideas and approaches to the political science professoriate, as well as other academic and professional fields. Read more about the RBSI Advisory Committee's recommendations for the future of the RBSI program and related new programming in the RBSI Advisory Committee Final Report.
The RBSI program is named in honor of Dr. Ralph J. Bunche , Nobel Peace Prize recipient, former APSA president, educator, civil and human rights leader, diplomat, and the first African American to receive a PhD in political science. The RBSI provides important graduate training for undergraduates from historically underrepresented and marginalized racial and ethnic groups diverse backgrounds who are interested in pursuing academic careers in political science. Participants also learn new methodological and research skills while gaining access to resources and a broadened network of scholars. As noted by one of the alumni, “The RBSI prepared me for a career as a scholar, entrepreneur, and leader beyond my wildest dreams.” Read more about the RBSI Program.
The RBSI Program is jointly sponsored by support from Duke University, the National Science Foundation and APSA. Nearly $250,000 is required to cover the costs associated with RBSI each year. The costs include full summer session tuition, health insurance, transportation, on-campus room and board, books and instructional materials for 15-20 students annually. Students also receive a food allowance and a weekly stipend.
Visit the Ralph Bunche Fund website.