Atlas Corps Seeks Changemakers at CEU

November 14, 2017

“We believe in talented people crossing borders and exchanging ideas.”

Those were the words of Meredith Newmark, Program Director with the Atlas Corps Fellowship Program, which aims to connect people from around the globe on the basis of their drive for social change.

During the information session, Newmark addressed CEU students to encourage them to apply for the fellowship. She explained that the program matches successful applicants with host organisations within the US. Romeo Zelayandia Gonzalez (LEGS ’17), who participated in the program in the past, also shared his experience.

With over 200 host organisations, this competitive fellowship receives over 10,000 applications from around the world each year. The host organisations deal with a variety of social issues, including child protection, LGBT rights, violence against women and minorities, press freedom and so forth.

Students from varying fields with a drive to create social change within their country of origin are encouraged to apply. The fellowship provides gain hands-on experience for 12 to 18 months before returning to their home country.

The program is geared towards young professionals with two to ten years of work experience and a desire to enact social change. Though the current round of applications for 2018-19 fellowships concludes on December 19, students and early professionals, ages 22 – 35, can apply year-round for fellowships that begin every two to four months. The program is geared towards young professionals with two to ten years of work experience and a desire to enact social change.

Atlas Corps partners include large organizations such as Worldwatch Institute and Women for Women International as well as smaller, grassroots organizations.  Atlas Corps matches an applicant’s skill set and thematic interests with a specific organization. 65% of all Atlas Corps alumni say that they gained their current job in part due to the fellowship. 95% reported that they cultivated skills and know-how that are irreplaceable.

Newmark ended her talk by providing a few tips for would-be applicants; agents for change wanting to boost their career. She encouraged students not to be humble when applying, but rather to brag a little about their wonderful achievements.

Zelayandia Gonzales also spoke at the event. He described his experience in Washington D.C, both work-wise and personally. “There’s always an after-work activity, which can help you connect with people with similar interests and in similar fields.” He encouraged students to apply if they want to build a career that can create change, particularly in their own country, and to build a strong network that will help them through most of their career.

Atlas Corps is a competitive fellowship that connects fellows with full-time positions in functional areas including communications, advocacy and monitoring and evaluation. It also includes a training component, ‘Global Leadership Lab,’ with workshops facilitated by practitioners and experts. CEU and Atlas Corps have fostered a good relationship, as they are both international hubs for diversity promoting social change around the globe.

While a professional fellowship focused on social change is not the right stepping-stone for all CEU students, many of those who attended expressed appreciation for the information and encouragement they received thanks to the event. For further information about the program and application instructions, see career>next.

by Sahar Haq (SPP '19)