Shaping leaders in service to the global good, the James T. Laney School of Graduate Studies at Emory University prepares a diverse, inclusive student body for success through scholarship, research, teaching, and programming.

Two researchers work in a lab.

As society faces constant and escalating challenges, the Laney Graduate School leads the charge in training future leaders across more than 40 disciplines, including the humanities; social, biomedical, and natural sciences; public health; nursing; and business. Students work with faculty researchers and scholars to uncover solutions to complex problems and improve the human condition. They enter the professional world equipped with deep knowledge and experience in their fields and a desire to be leaders in academia, business, health care, industry, and government.

We are trying to develop a chatbot that actually will bring people closer together.

— Jinho Choi, Assistant Professor, Department of Computer Science, Institute of Quantitative Theory and Methods, and Program of Linguistics


Campaign Priority

Broaden Career Opportunities

What good is a graduate degree—to students, their communities, or the world—without understanding how to do the most good with it? That’s the thinking behind the Graduate Institute for Professional Development and Career Planning. A named endowment would allow this institute to develop new ways to prepare students for a competitive, ever-changing job market and open their eyes to a wider range of career paths.

Funding this endowment through 2O36 would support additional training and workshops around ethics, pedagogy, grant writing, and diverse career exploration. It would connect students with research and training opportunities through partnerships with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the High Museum of Art, Fortune 500 companies, and other organizations. It will also enable students to develop professional skills that enhance their abilities to thrive in academic and nonacademic careers.

Campaign Priority

Remove Barriers

Since launching its pilot program from 2016-2018, Communities of Practice has brought together doctoral and master’s students, faculty, and practitioners from across the humanities and social sciences. Together, they break down the boundaries between the university and the world, combining utilitarian approaches to international development—which stress efficiency, rationality, and personal gain—and those that recognize the importance of culture and meaning in understanding behavior.

Endowing the Communities of Practice program through 2O36 allows Emory to expand and diversify our student population by engaging Atlanta’s diverse international communities. Providing much-needed tuition support and alleviating program-related expenses will make Emory the top choice for students from across the United States and around the world, allowing them to graduate with little or no debt as they enter service-related careers in global sustainable development.


Kimberly Jacob Arriola 01PH

Dean, Laney Graduate School, Emory University
Vice Provost for Graduate Affairs, Emory University
Charles Howard Candler Professor of Behavioral, Social, and Health Education Sciences, Rollins School of Public Health
A video quote of Kimberly Jacob Arriola 01PH
Campaign Priority

In 2O36, Connections Are Vital

Emory graduate students are harnessing the power of artificial intelligence and natural language processing to, for example, treat depression, loneliness, and symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease. In developing a chatbot for Amazon Alexa that makes logical inferences, rather than functioning as a search engine, Emory graduate students were able to teach bots to ask questions that lead people to seek much-needed human companionship and treatment. Without the mentorship of faculty researchers and connections to organizations outside of Emory, this kind of groundbreaking work wouldn’t be possible.

2O36 will generate support for the Laney Fund for Professional Gateway Fellowships, which offer graduate students supplemental income during professional internships. These real-world experiences are a gateway into new industries, positions, and uses for their degrees. By helping students form deep connections within organizations in Atlanta and around the world, we give them a competitive edge.


Andra Gillespie

Associate Professor, Political Science
Director, James Weldon Johnson Institute at Emory University
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