The Upper House Fellows program is designed to support the intellectual and spiritual formation of students and faculty at the University of Wisconsin-Madison who desire to connect their current academic pursuits with their faith and future vocational aspirations. As Upper House gives voice to, and seeks to advance the Christian intellectual tradition, our Fellows will gather every two weeks for meals and discussions over the course of the academic year. The purpose of these meetings (and corresponding curriculum) will be to actively engage the life of the mind, as a means of strengthening a Christian sense of being, and empowering transformative action for the life of the world. In sum, the Fellows program invites deep reflection on Christian formation and identity (historically, theologically, and philosophically) in relationship to current course work and independent scholarly projects. All of this emanates from Upper House’s commitment to the historic Christian faith, the church, and the support of broad vocational discernment/development in the academy and marketplace.


For the 2019-20 academic year, Upper House will solicit applications for eight junior fellowship positions, consisting of four graduate students and four undergraduate students, who will receive $1750, and $1250 stipends, respectively, gifted in two installments (i.e., one-half of stipend during fall 2019 and the remaining one-half during spring 2020). We will also invite two senior fellows from UW-Madison’s faculty and administration. Fellows will be expected to read approximately 50 pages per meeting and, except in case of emergency, be active participants at group meetings throughout the academic year. They will also be strongly encouraged to engage with various Upper House programming initiatives. Readings for the fall of 2019 will explore the historical framework of Christian thought. Spring 2020 will focus on the inheritance of Christian thought in the 20th and 21st century, with special attention to contemporary moral challenges, questions, and concerns, ranging from technology and bioethics to cultural identity and statehood.


Robert L. Kehoe III is a graduate of Wheaton College in Wheaton, Illinois where he studied political theory. After college, Robert was awarded a Kierkegaard Library young scholars fellowship at St. Olaf College. He then studied at Boston College, where he received his M.A. in philosophy, focusing on Ancient Greek and twentieth century German thought. As a public expression of his leadership at Upper House, he enjoys speaking on a range of cultural issues, is an editor at The Point Magazine, has been a guest on NPR’s On Point, and his writing has appeared in the LA Review of BooksBoston Review of BooksBooks & CultureFirst ThingsComment, and Commonweal. Robert is currently working on a book that will explore the relationship between philosophy and athletics, through the lens of Plato’s Republic. To read Robert’s complete bio, click here.


Upper House warmly invites students who seek to integrate their faith and scholarship to fill out the basic application below, which includes two short essays (no more than 500 words) answering the following questions:

  • What brought you to UW-Madison and why do you want to participate in the Upper House Fellows Program?
  • What educational, personal, and spiritual experiences have shaped you to this point, and how do you hope this program will inform your personal and vocational pursuits?

Additionally, students will be expected to submit a resume/cv and two letters of reference (preferably including one from a UW professor and one from a pastor or spiritual mentor), to Robert Kehoe, III (rkehoe@slbrownfoundation.org).

Application deadline on April 15, 2019.



About Upper House

An initiative of the Stephen and Laurel Brown Foundation, Upper House is a center for Christian study, gathering, and learning. We exist to curate experiences of Christian thinking, being, and doing through our physical space, the programs that we offer, and through our hospitality to others…for individual transformation and for the life of the world.


Truth matters, ideas are consequential. Building on a rich and living Christian intellectual tradition, at Upper House we host generous conversations as means to engage the hard questions of life, deepen conviction, delight in the world, and gain wisdom.


To flourish in the world, we must become fully formed selves. At Upper House this formation occurs when we adopt healthy spiritual practices, enter genuine community, and cultivate virtue. Christian identity is formed from the inside out.


At Upper House we believe that healthy intellectual and spiritual formation prepare us to contribute to the life of the world, its healing and transformation. Made in the image of God, each of us possess agency—the creativity to make and invent, the capacity to build and manage, the ability to serve and to lead.