The Robert D. Orr endowed fellowship

The Robert D. Orr Endowed Fellowship supports a Theological Studies (THS) PhD student at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School (TEDS), who is committed to exploring the implications of biblical and theological perspectives for engaging medicine and technology.

It is not expected that Orr Fellowship recipients will direct any of their doctoral studies or dissertation toward the study of bioethics; rather, this fellowship provides an opportunity to supplement the recipient’s doctoral experience with an additional sub-specialization. The Fellowship will greatly broaden the student’s academic experience, pressing forward an interdisciplinary foundation, providing both editorial and writing experience, and functioning similar to a post-doctoral fellowship.

The Orr Fellowship awards unrestricted fellowships up to $5,000 per year, along with a concurrent part-time Managing Editor/Research Analyst staff appointment with The Center for Bioethics & Human Dignity (pay of up to $6,500 per year, depending on the number of hours worked; total award & compensation package of up to $11,500* per year).

Strong candidates for the fellowship include talented incoming and returning full-time TEDS PhD students who have shown remarkable academic performance, and who also demonstrate strong research potential and an interest in the implications of biblical and theological perspectives for engaging issues at the intersection of medicine, science, technology, and our common humanity. Successful Orr Fellowship recipients may apply for an annual one-year renewal of their Fellowship and may serve as an Orr Fellow for a total of up to four years based upon exceptional service.

Orr Fellowship recipients are expected to assist The Center for Bioethics & Human Dignity (CBHD), a leading Christian bioethics research center, for 10 hours per week, serving as Managing Editor for our peer-reviewed, online publications and performing scholarly tasks for the Center. The Orr Fellowship is awarded jointly with the Managing Editor/Research Analyst appointment, and the expectations and awards cannot be separated or individually accepted. Note that the Orr Fellowship cannot be combined with the TEDS Department Fellowship, Program Scholarship, Waybright Scholarship, or Hansen Fellowship.

The position is currently open and we are accepting applications for the 2024-2025 fellowship year.

*The total financial package ($11,500) is composed of a $2,500 fellowship, $2,500 Trinity matching scholarship, and up to $6,500 CBHD stipend (depending on the number of hours worked). Thus, the student will receive the funds partially as a scholarship and partially via payroll throughout the year. This also means the student’s year in the PhD program, along with any other TEDS scholarships he/she receives, will affect the total financial package accordingly:

- Coursework level (Years 1-2) without full-tuition scholarship:  Up to $11,500 per year.        
- Finished coursework (Years 3-4) without full-tuition scholarship: Up to $9,000 per year.        
- Coursework level (Years 1-2) with full-tuition scholarship: Up to $9,000 per year. 
- Finished coursework (Years 3-4) with full-tuition scholarship: Up to $9,000 per year.

Photo of current Orr Fellow

Sai Krishna (Joshua)
Gomatam, MCA, MDiv

Robert D. Orr Fellow

Sai Krishna (Joshua) Gomatam was born and raised in a Hindu family. After experiencing an existential crisis at the age of sixteen—which was initiated by a quote on human need by the French mathematician and philosopher Blaise Pascal—he was attracted to Christianity.

Since then, he has been an ardent witness to the Christian faith, eventually pursuing theological education at Denver Seminary. He also worked as an Associate Pastor and lecturer at Hyderabad Institute of Theology and Apologetics. He is involved in training pastors and church leaders in India through the Right Theology Forum and has served widely among the Indian diaspora community in the U.S., Canada, Australia, and Africa.

Sai Krishna holds a BS in Computer Science and a Master of Computer Applications degree from India, along with an MDiv in Biblical Studies from Denver Seminary, Colorado. He is currently pursuing a doctoral degree in Old Testament, with an emphasis on Ancient Near Eastern languages and archaeology. He is focusing his research on ethics related to gender/sexuality and marriage as portrayed in the book of Numbers and is interested in bringing this comparative study into dialogue with 21st century conceptions of gender/sexuality and marriage.

He is married to Mruduveni, who tutors Science at Adlai Stevenson High School, Illinois. They are blessed with two daughters, Shiloah and Zoe. Sai Krishna loves sports. His favorite sports to watch and play are cricket and tennis.

Critieria & Requirements

In addition, Orr Fellowship recipients are required to: