Emerging Global Leaders Initiative – Atlas Corps Fellowship

Deadline: November 1, 2015 for the May 2016 Fellowship

The U.S. Department of State is pleased to announce a special opportunity for emerging civil society leaders to participate in a 6-18 month professional fellowship in the United States. All Fellows will be placed at a leading social change organization in the United States.   Individuals in the nonprofit/NGO sectors with two or more years of experience, a college degree and English proficiency are encouraged to apply. Atlas Corps has supported over 350 emerging leaders from over 72 different countries and seeks candidates to apply as soon as possible for their next class of Fellows. To apply and to find out more information, click here.

Fellowship Goals

The goals of the EGLI-Atlas Corps Fellowship are to:

  • Provide leadership development training for rising civil society leaders;
  • Develop the skills of nonprofit professionals, especially women, youth and leaders working on social issues that are priorities for the U.S. Government;
  • To share best practices of nonprofit management; and
  • To build ties between civil society leaders in the United States and countries around the world.

Program Components

Fellows will serve full-time for 9 to 18 months at leading organizations throughout the United States to share skills and learn new perspectives on best practices in nonprofit leadership, including social entrepreneurship, social media, monitoring and evaluation, and development. Previous host organizations have included American Red Cross, Ashoka, CARE, Grameen Foundation, Habitat for Humanity, Malala Fund,Peace Corps, Save the Children, Special Olympics, Susan G.Komen, UN Foundation, UNICEF USA, World Wildlife Fund, and many more.  Fellows will also participate in 200 hours of Global Leadership Lab-in person and virtual training on the key principles of nonprofit management.  At the conclusion of the program, Fellows will enroll in the Atlas Corps Alumni network, ECA’s Exchanges Connect network, and numerous other networks to foster continued exchange of talents and best practices after they return home.


Competition for the Emerging Global Leaders Initiative – Atlas Corps Fellowship is merit-based and open to civil society leaders and professionals, age 35 years or younger at the time of application, who meet the following criteria:

  • 2 or more years of relevant experience in the nonprofit/NGO/social sector
  • Bachelor’s degree or equivalent
  • English proficiency (oral, writing, reading)
  • Commitment to return to your home country after the 9-18 month fellowship
  • Passionate about the social causes they support, have a record of success, and demonstrate the potential for great and long-term impact in the social section of their country.

May Fellowship 2016 Time Line

  • November 1, 2015: Priority deadline for the May Fellowship. Applications are taken year round, but earlier applications tend to be more successful.
  • November 1 – February 28: Applications reviewed and interviews conducted
  • March 1-31: Most final decisions made by this month
  • May: Fellows arrive for orientation and begin service at Host Organizations

Application Process

  1. Online Application: All applications need to be submitted online. We will not accept applications via email or mail. You will need to create a login and you can save your responses so you can return to the application at any time. The application consists of background information, personal biography, essays, and letters of recommendation.Note: In order to sponsor candidates to come to the United States for one year as a Fellow, we require detailed information about each applicant. The U.S. Government requires much of the information we are asking for in the application. Your responses also facilitate your Host Organization placement. Please answer each question honestly and accurately. It is critical to be honest and complete in your application. If you are found to be dishonest in the application, you will NOT be accepted as a Fellow and you will be sent home if you have been accepted.
  2. Letters of Recommendation: Atlas Corps requires two (up to three) letters of recommendation from individuals who know you in a professional capacity and can write about your skills and experiences as well as your potential for success as an Atlas Corps Fellow. You will need to send your request for a letter of recommendation directly through the application system. Your recommender will receive an email that asks for a recommendation. More detailed instructions can be found in the online application form. Recommendation letters should be submitted within two weeks after submitting your application.
  3. Review Process: Applications will be reviewed by a selection committee including Atlas Corps staff and nonprofit sector, government, and business leaders from multiple countries. English writing tests and phone interviews will be conducted with semi-finalists. Host Organizations will conduct Skype video interviews with selected finalists. Host Organizations will make their final recommendations to Atlas Corps, and Atlas Corps will notify the selected candidates.
  4. Visa Process: After being selected, candidates will go to the U.S. Embassy in their respective countries to apply for a J-1 visa. Atlas Corps will provide support in obtaining this visa.

Questions? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions page. If your question isn’t answered there, please email apply@atlascorps.org