Applications are open for the U.S. Department of States Professional Fellows for Governance and Society – spring 2020. The program brings young professionals from India, Pakistan, and Nepal to the U.S. to exchange ideas, strategies, and best practices in legislative process and policymaking.
Through this two-way exchange for emerging leaders, participants will exchange ideas and best practices, while also improving leadership skills and developing sustainable and enduring linkages with professional counterparts. Participants will be matched with a U.S. organization or government office for a professional fellowship in order to increase their understanding of the U.S. legislative process. They will also engage in civic life through enrichment activities such as meeting with key stakeholders, dialogues, and site visits and participate in the Professional Fellows Congress with other 200+ Fellows from 48 countries.
The following are themes and topics related to legislation and governance that may be included in the program: good governance (e.g. transparency and anti-corruption); legislative processes; the role of women, minorities, and marginalized populations in civil society and the political process; decentralization; youth engagement; development and strengthening of NGOs and civil society; post-conflict transitions; and non-violent civic participation.
The program includes the following components:
- Participant selection and pre-departure orientation in India, Pakistan, or Nepal;
- A one-month U.S. experiential program for participants from India, Pakistan, and Nepal that includes fellowships, interactive seminars, site visits, synthesis discussions, and designing follow-on projects (multiple cohorts)
- In-country seminars and support of follow-on activities for participants from India, Pakistan, and Nepal, including workshops and consultations by American experts (multiple cohorts)
- The U.S. program begins with an orientation in Washington, DC that focuses on the structure of the US government, the legislative process, and the role of civil society. Following is a four-week fellowship in several US cities, which includes professional fellowships, seminars, homestays, and civic engagement. Participants then return to Washington, DC for the concluding Professional Fellows’ Congress, which includes workshops, meetings with US government officials, and a program debrief.
- Accommodations will include double-person hotel rooms and homestays with American families and peers. A small stipend will be provided during the participants’ time in the United States to cover basic living expenses. The cost of international and domestic travel, program-related ground transportation, cultural activities, and all the other programmatic and logistical arrangements will be covered.
- Health coverage is provided through the Accident and Sickness Program for Exchanges (ASPE). ASPE is a self-funded, limited health care benefit plan designed to pay covered medical expenses for eligible exchange participants. Covered medical expenses are subject to limitation and pre-existing conditions are not covered. This plan is not an insurance policy. Therefore, if the participant should have any serious medical care, he/she should seek additional health insurance on their own behalf.
- Participants will be required to apply for a J-1 visa for work and study-based exchange programs. The visa process will be conducted by local U.S. Embassies and Consulates in conjunction with local partners and World Learning. The visa will cover the program travel dates only. In accordance with this visa’s two-year residency requirement (212(e)) participants are required to return to their home country for at least two years at the end of your exchange visitor program.
- Candidates from India, Pakistan, and Nepal of professionals ages 25-40.
- Candidates with excellent interpersonal and communication skills, proven leadership abilities, the ability to work in a cross-cultural setting and a commitment to the program and follow-on activities.
- Written and oral English proficiency is required as the participants will need to converse about complex political and global issues with U.S. peers and experts.
- Preference will be given to applicants with relevant professional achievements who have not previously visited the United States.
- All candidates should be able and willing to host American counterparts, for up to a week, and design, arrange, and coordinate, under World Learning and its partners’ supervision, a local professional and cultural program for the American participants.
Eligible Regions: Nepal, India, and Pakistan
Deadline: November 08, 2019