Eligibility for the Atlas Corps Fellowship
Atlas Corps Fellowship (USA)
Atlas Corps is an overseas fellowship for the world's best nonprofit leaders. Our mission is to address critical social issues by developing leaders, strengthening organizations, and promoting innovation through an overseas fellowship of skilled nonprofit professionals. The Atlas Corps Fellowship typically lasts 12-18 months. (For those serving in the United States, opportunities start in January, May, September.) Fellows serve full-time at Host Organizations, develop leadership skills, and learn nonprofit best practices through the Atlas Corps Global Leadership Lab professional development series and networking opportunities with other Fellows who are skilled nonprofit professionals from around the world. This prestigious fellowship includes health insurance, enrollment in Atlas Corps Global Leadership Lab, flight and visa costs, and a living stipend to cover basic expenses (food, local transportation, and shared housing).
For more explanation of these requirements, check out our Frequently Asked Questions page.
We consider applications on a rolling basis. You are encouraged to apply as soon as possible to be considered for Host Organization placements, which begin in January, May, or September. The application is a multi-step process.
Atlas Corps receives hundreds of applications each month, so each of the steps listed above may take approximately 1-3 months. Most applications are reviewed within two major vetting periods each year. Occasionally Atlas Corps may “fast-track” applications for special opportunities, but in most cases, the vetting process will take several months overall. You may apply at any time and be considered, but we encourage you to spend some time on your application, including having it be reviewed by a peer, and then submit it as early as possible and not wait for any deadlines, so that we can start reviewing your eligibility and background. See below for the approximate calendar, which is subject to change.
If you submit Part 1 of the application by December 19, 2016*:
* Thanks to special funding from the U.S. Government, we’ve extended the priority deadline to January 15, 2017 for candidates from Russia, Albania, and the Middle East and North Africa region. Candidates from these countries may be reviewed on a shorter timeline.
If you submit Part 1 of the application between December 20, 2016 and June 19, 2017:
We encourage applicants to check their email frequently for updates; otherwise they risk missing critical information or deadlines. If you are accepted to the Fellowship, there may be a quick turnaround time between your acceptance and the beginning of the Fellowship. Start dates are not flexible, and assuming your visa is approved, you must begin your Fellowship with the class to which you are accepted.
When you apply for the Atlas Corps Fellowship, you’re not applying for a specific Host Organization or a specific start date; you’re applying for the opportunity to be considered by Atlas Corps and potential Host Organizations for placements starting in January, May, or September. Semi-Finalist applications are kept on file and considered for multiple classes unless the candidate withdraws their application. In some cases, strong candidates may be selected for the Fellowship in as little as 3-4 months after they first submitted Part 1 of their application, while in other cases, strong candidates may be considered for multiple classes before matching with a Host Organization placement.
Final decisions about each class of Fellows are made approximately 4-8 weeks before the class begins. For example, the January class decisions are typically made in November; May class decisions are typically made in March; September class decisions are typically made in July. You may re-apply to our program, but you should only apply once a year, unless there is a dramatic change in your application, such as completing graduate school, winning an award, etc. If you ever decide to withdraw your application from consideration, please email email@example.com.
In addition to the classic Atlas Corps Fellowship, a series of unique initiatives complement our global exchange model. In partnership with the Tahrir Institute for Middle East Policy (TIMEP), we are currently accepting applications for the Atlas Corps-TIMEP Bassem Sabry Fellowship, for professionals with a background in journalism, international relations, political science, or other relevant fields, who are interested in undertaking research on the Middle East or North Africa. Read more about the selection process for this initiative here.
This special initiative has separate eligibility requirements, but does NOT require a separate application. Applicants interested in these initiatives should simply apply for our U.S. Fellowship.
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