Introduction to the Program
Leadership begins by volunteering time and effort, by offering to take on responsibilities in organizations. When others see your energy, and commitment to their cause, your personal investment in common goals, they elect you to office. Leadership may also be more behind the scenes, writing articles, doing research, or being novel and enterprising in some constructive way. Take the initiative to do or create something substantial or otherwise significant.
Broaden yourself. Fellowships are awarded to students abreast of current affairs, both national and international. You will be asked your opinions on political issues. The best preparation is to read quality newspapers and magazines such as The New York Times, especially the "Week in Review" section on Sundays, and The Economist or The Nation and The Progressive, especially the op-ed and editorial pages where commentaries, opinion and debate appears.
Professors. Get to know faculty to the point that they get to know you. Later, they may write your recommendations. Find a reason to visit them during open office hours. Strike up an intellectual conversation with probing questions. Establish academic relationships with them, even with those who do not teach you in class. Visit at least one new professor each semester, and revisit those with whom you establish a rapport. Faculty knowledge is a treasured resource. Research show that students who reach out to professors (beyond homework and grades) do best in college -- and win the top fellowships. It is a sign of your maturity that you can converse intelligently with a professor.
Articulate. Practice speaking about your beliefs and experiences, defending your opinions, sharing your ideas. Join forums for this such as the Debate Club and the Model United Nations.
Interviewing. Actively learn and practice interview skills and techniques. This must be a conscious endeavor. The CDO offers workshops, as does the Jacobson Center.
Genre. Application writing for fellowships is akin to the grant writing genre. It involves thinking strategically to maximize your value in every question on the application form with perfected presentation, plus marrying your personal statement to your project or academic proposal. The personal statement is an intellectual biography of what led you to the point of your proposal and gave you the background that reassures selectors about its potential for success. It also embraces your career goals so that your past, present, and future form a cohesive continuum.
Travel abroad if you can. Expand your horizons. Participate in interesting programs. Undertake projects. Initiate enterprises. Or stay on campus but DO RESEARCH.
Overseas study has become a vital part of education, and international fellowships are the high road to study abroad. To gain valuable international experience early in your career is becoming important for some careers. You can prepare for a job market where many activities have become globalized by acquiring the skills to thrive in the international arena. Studying overseas opens a window to a world of new experiences and sheds light on new options. International study brings fresh perspectives to political and economic issues, to interpersonal relationships, and to career choices.
Research and Internships such as Kahn Institute fellowships, collaborative research with professors, and Praxis internships through the CDO.