Religious Freedom Education

The Religious Freedom Institute’s NextGen Initiative encompasses three programs designed to educate and equip a new generation of leaders to be informed, effective defenders of religious freedom for everyone, everywhere.

Emerging Leaders Program:
An intensive, transformational learning opportunity for high-school and college-level students with an interest in civic life and public service. ELP courses span one to two weeks and are led by world-class instructors who have been diplomats, advocates, and scholars working to advance religious freedom in the United States and across the world. 

Junior Fellows Program:
The Junior Fellows Program is a year-long opportunity for university and graduate students to work at RFI, deepen their understanding of religious freedom, develop research and communication skills, and participate in a network of peers and professionals studying religious freedom.

Program for Internships, Research Assistants, and Fellowships:
Join the Religious Freedom Institute and become a contributing member of one of our action teams. Assist in research and writing projects, contribute to online publications, design and host events. Take advantage of professional development opportunities in Washington, D.C. and receive guided instruction to deepen your understanding of religious freedom and the mechanisms for advancing it globally.

For more information on any of the Religious Freedom Education programs contact us at


Director of Religious Freedom Education

David Trimble is Director of Religious Freedom Education at the Religious Freedom Institute. He is also a Senior Fellow of the RFI Middle East and International Religious Freedom Policy Action Teams. He was formerly a principal at the leading D.C. firm of Van Scoyoc Associates. For many years, David has provided counsel to federal agencies, independent clients, and governments on such varied topics as international affairs, foreign policy, education, and religious liberty.  Throughout his career, Mr. Trimble has provided leadership in the field of education - launching seminal programs and driving new policies and innovation.  Read more….


RFI Intern:

Briann Bardsley is an intern at RFI working on the Middle East Action Team and the Center for Religious Freedom Education. She focuses primarily on women's rights and religious freedom in the Middle East, and previously worked with First Liberty Institute. A junior at Baylor University, she studies International Studies, Political Science, and is a member of the Baylor Interdisciplinary Core honors program. After graduation, she intends to pursue a career in religious liberty advocacy, politics, and international affairs, with the likelihood of attending law or graduate school.