31 Social Sector Fellowships That Are An Experience Of A Lifetime

In the recent years, fellowships have emerged as a tremendous experiential learning experience and an excellent starting point for those who contemplate venturing into the social impact space. During the course, you receive hands-on experience in the field, understand cultural competency and leadership skills and even gain international experience, in some cases. Moreover, a fellowship will help you learn new skills and stand out in a way that can help in your career change. There are several, diverse social sector fellowships in India that provide a thrilling experience of working in the impact sector; this list will help you decide which one is best suited for you, based on your skills, aspirations and passion.

1. Teach for India fellowship

The Teach for India fellowship is a two-year full-time opportunity for graduates and professionals to work as teachers in low-income schools. It helps you to engage with children and make a difference in their lives while acquiring leadership skills. Teach for India fellowship has four application rounds every year. Eligibility criteria is an undergraduate degree (or a bachelor’s degree equivalent). Visit their website for more information. The last date for applying is 25th March 2018.

2.Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) CSR Fellow Program

The CII CSR FELLOW PROGRAMME is for professionals working in companies and their foundations. It aims to provide a combination of experiential learning and theoretical knowledge. Participants go through immersion and learning mission in a real rural setup, alongside receiving the technical knowledge on CSR imparted through customised modules. Fellows witness an un-learning and re-learning process which acts as an input to make participants more competent for better implementation and impact of their projects. Read more about CII fellowship here.

3. Azim Premji Foundation Fellowship program

The Azim Premji foundation fellowship focuses on education. It is a two-year full-time program where students get to engage in rural government schools in India. It aims to strengthen the understanding of education and development issues in our country and includes rigorous fieldwork. For details, visit the website.

4. Ravi Sankaran Fellowships

The Ravi Sankaran fellowship is a biodiversity conservation initiative by the Inlaks Shivdasani Foundation. The course aims to train students in the learning about conservation and to integrate them into a broader community working towards the same. Indian nationals, with an undergraduate degree and below 30 years of age can apply. Visit their website for more details on this social sector fellowship. Deadline is April 15, 2018.

5. Prime Minister’s Rural Fellowship

The Prime Minister’s Rural Fellowship (PMRD) was started by the Ministry of Rural Development to reduce poverty and improve the lives of the rural population of our country. PMRD is a two-year fellowship where fellows work with district magistrates of remote areas to fix the infrastructure, governance and policy deficits. One year in public service as a full-time employee of the state rural livelihood mission is mandatory after the completion of the fellowship. The website has more details on the same.

6. Gandhi Fellowship

The Gandhi fellowship is a two-year rural residential program. The fellows get involved with primary school headmasters to implement change in their schools. The fellows work with five schools over the course of the fellowship. It is an excellent opportunity to improve leadership skills and work towards the improvement of the society. To apply, visit the website here.

7. William J Clinton Fellowship

The William J Clinton fellowship connects a few skilled professionals with leading NGOs and social enterprises in India. Over the course of ten months of service and fieldwork, fellows learn about the development sector especially topics such as education, livelihoods, public health and more. The William J Foundation is a great learning experience for both social sector leaders and the fellows. More information is available on their website. 

8. The Youth for India Fellowship Program, SBI

The State Bank of India supports the Youth for India Fellowship Program. The fellows reside in villages and train in different fields. The program is for 13 months, and graduates between the age of 21-32 can apply. You can read more about YIFP social sector fellowship here. 

9. Legislative Assistants to Members of Parliament (LAMP) fellowship

The LAMP fellowship gives young children a chance to work with MPs and participate in the policy-making process. The selected fellows work full time for eleven months with a particular MP with whom they are assigned to work. The fellowship starts right before the beginning of the monsoon session until the end of the budget session. Read more about LAMP fellowship here. 

10. Young India Fellowship ,

Young India Fellowship is a year-long post-graduate course that selects 100 young boys and girls from around India. The fellowship helps acquire leadership skills and focuses on diverse topics. The fellowship is open for Indian citizens between the age of 20-28 years. For more information, visit their website is here.

11. Rajiv Gandhi National Fellowship for SC/ST Candidates:

The Rajiv Gandhi fellowship was started for the underprivileged to provide them with an opportunity to pursue higher education. The program helps the fellows with financial assistance for studying M.Phil and PhD degrees in diverse subjects including Science, Humanities and Engineering & Technology. Eligibility is SC/ST candidates who have cleared post-graduation. Information is available on the website. 

12. IDEX fellowship

IDEX fellowship is an intensive experience and a great start to a career in the impact space. The fellowship is six months long and provides coaching, mentoring workshops, customised readings and teaches the important aspects of relationship building and professional growth. To know more about IMEX fellowship, visit their website, program starts in July 2018.

13. Acumen India fellowship

Acumen fellowship India trains 20 outstanding individuals with knowledge, aid and practical advice to implement a positive change in society. During the year-long course, fellows continue with their jobs while participating in five week- long seminars where they acquire tools, training and space to create new ideas, accelerate their impact, build a network of social leaders from across the country and globally. More information available here. 

14. World Economic Forum – Global leadership Programme

The Global Leadership Fellows Programme by the WEF helps in preparing individuals for leadership in an increasingly complex and ambiguous world, equipping them to address severe problems that our planet is going through by public-private orientation. The fellowship extends over three years and is a combination of on-the-job experience, a creative learning curriculum, personalised coaching and mentoring and access to a vast network of alumni. Read more about it here. 

15. The Amar Ujala Foundation’s Atul Maheshwari Scholarships for Underprivileged Children in India:

This is an exciting scholarship program by Amar Ujala Foundation uniquely designed for students who are studying in a government institution and have a family income of less than 1.5 Lakh Rupees. All the students selected receive financial aid for three years. Eligibility criteria is a minimum of 65% in the last exams. Visit their website for details.

16. The Period Fellowship

The period fellowship is a programme by Sukhibhava and brings together young, dynamic women from diverse backgrounds to spread awareness on menstruation and menstrual hygiene to one million women in both urban and rural India. The fellows will help girls to understand the changes their body undergoes, and help them explore concepts such as hygiene, menstrual cycle, PMS and superstitions. Visit their website for more information.

17. The Chief Ministers Good Governance Associates programme (CMGGA)

The Chief Ministers Good Governance Associates programme (CMGGA) is a collaboration of the Haryana Government and Ashoka University. It is an experiential program aiming to recruit youngsters to participate in the district administration in Haryana, as a team of the Chief Minister of the state. The program starts with two weeks elaborate training at Ashoka University after which they place the candidates in 22 districts of Haryana for a year.
Throughout the fellowship, the fellows interact the Chief Minister to follow up on the work done and contribute in the decision-making process with senior officials of the state. Read more about it here.  

18.  Young Professionals Programme  by WTO

The WTO Young Professionals Programme (YPP) recruits candidates from developing and least-developed countries, to improve
knowledge and skills on WTO and international trade issues. For more information, read here.

19. Mozilla Fellowship

Mozilla Fellowships provide resources, tools, community and amplification to those who are trying to create a digital world for good. Over the course of the fellowship, fellows design products that develop campaigns, contribute in policy making and try to research on how to work towards an open and neutral internet. For more information, visit their website. 

20.  IIHS – The Urban Fellows Programme

The Indian Insititute for Human Settlements conducts the Urban Fellows Programme. They recruit young professionals committed to bringing a change, and solving India’s urban challenges. The UFP is a full-time, nine-month fellowship based in Bengaluru. To apply, visit the website here.

21. Transforming India Initiative Fellowship Programme 2018

Transforming India Initiative is a two-year programme, supported by the Niti Aayog’s Atal Innovation Mission and Institute of Rural Management Anand (IRMA) and is focused on transforming students from being a job seeker to be a job creator. During the two years, fellows work with social enterprises and acquire the skills necessary for becoming an entrepreneur. To apply, visit their website.

22. Genpact Social Impact Fellowship (GSIF)

Genpact has launched the Genpact Social Impact Fellowship (GSIF) in partnership with EdelGive Foundation, the philanthropic division of Edelweiss Group. The one-year program is designed to work with high impact projects in the country. Applications are open to everyone with demonstrable experience in social impact space. For more information, read this.

23. Prakriti Research Fellowship

The Prakriti Research Fellowship is a small grants programme focused on nature conservation and action to create a long -term impact on the same in Aurangabad and beyond. It started in 2018 after the need identified by a research conducted by Green Aurangabad Mission. The fellowship aims to provide seed money for strong on-ground work done by individuals, teams, and small NGOs in this field. The Prakriti fellowship has had 40 applications from across the country and two fully sponsored programs on field, two in Aurangabad and one in Ladakh! To apply, visit their website.

24. Dalai Lama Fellows

The Dalai Lama fellowship is focused on reimagining leadership. It cultivates and supports a global movement of next-generation leaders applying universal values to solve global challenges. The application for 2019 are open, visit their website for more information.

25. Kautilya Fellow Program

The Kautilya Fellow Program aims to provide scholars an opportunity to study India’s age old tradition of building cooperative relationships with other countries and understand India’s growing leadership role in the world. For more information, click here

26. International Innovation Corps – Project Associate Experience

IIC Project Associates bring passion and energy to the tough but rewarding work of implementing cutting-edge, high-impact solutions to significant development challenges. Through mentorship from top leaders in government, industry, and non-profits, Project Associates become global leaders-in-training. To know more about IIC Project Associates, visit their website

27. Amani Institute – Social Innovation Management

Social Innovation Management program is about learning by doing, training with master practitioners, unlocking your potential, and preparing to build the career you truly want. The fellows can choose where they want to do the program in Kenya, Brazil, or India. For more information, apply here.

28. Delhi Assembly Research Centre (DARC) Fellowship

The DARC fellowship is aimed to create a repository of valuable research and reference material for the use of the lawmakers and other stakeholders. The last date to apply is February 25, 2019. For more information, visit their website.

29. The Chief Minister Fellowship Maharashtra

The CMFP Maharashtra is designed to provide valuable experience to youngsters interested in the social development sector. The program aims to cultivate young leaders, strengthen their understanding of the public administration and prepare them for more significant leadership roles in the future. Read more.

30. Adenauer Fellowship

The Konrad Adenauer Stiftung (KAS) Media Programme Asia has established the Adenauer Fellowship for Media & Communication in Asia. With the fellowship grants, KAS intends to we want to support journalists and media experts in pursuing professional enrichment and work towards advancement and in their commitment to a free, viable and responsible communication in Asia. Find out more here. 

31. Starting Bloc

StartingBloc is a global community committed to working towards an equitable, collaborative, thriving world. The StartingBloc Fellowship program, convenes, supports, and shapes the leaders our future needs. To know more about the StartingBloc fellowship, visit here.

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