The Hurford Youth Fellowship Program seeks to build the leadership skills and harness the potential of young democracy activists from around the world. Through the Program, young activists spend three months at the World Movement’s Secretariat, during which they expand their global connections, share experiences with other activists from democracy movements around the world, and contribute to the development of the World Movement for Democracy. Hurford Youth Fellows engage in strategic meetings; conduct research; and organize and lead presentations, online discussions, and information-sharing sessions on key democracy issues.
Upon the successful completion of each fellowship, the fellows serve as a regional/country focal point, working with the Hurford Youth Fellowship Alumni Network to remain involved and take the lead in youth-related activities.
Eligibility: Applicants interested in the Hurford Youth Fellows Program must be no older than 30 years of age. They must demonstrate strong interest in democratic activism and in the advancement of democracy in their respective communities, as well as worldwide. Youth affiliated with civil society organizations are especially encouraged to apply.
Please Note: The Hurford Youth Fellows Program is open to applicants from any country. It does not provide scholarship funds or any other type of financial aid to university or graduate students, nor is it designed to support postdoctoral research. The program is not an educational program of- fering academic courses leading toward a degree. In addition, it does not provide financial support to those seeking to complete professional training programs, attend conferences, or pursue intern- ships at other organizations.
English Language Requirement: A working knowledge of English is an important prerequisite for participation in the program for general communication purposes. All application materials must be submitted in English.
Selection Process: Fellows will be selected by the World Movement Secretariat staff, NED regional program staff, and the Hurford Youth Fellowship Alumni Network following an application process. Selection will be based on a set of criteria including demonstrated activism or interest in the ad- vancement of democracy, a desire to network with others, and a clear explanation of how the fellow- ship will benefit their own efforts for advancing democracy.
Residency Requirements: Fellows are expected to work full-time on their fellowship projects at the NED office in Washington, D.C. Fellows may not hold any other fellowships or be otherwise em- ployed during the fellowship period without the express permission of World Movement Secretariat staff. Additional fellowships or work opportunities that coincide with the fellowship period must be brought to the attention of World Movement Secretariat staff prior to the candidate’s acceptance of a Hurford Fellowship. Failure to do so may result in the revocation of the fellowship.
Hurford Youth fellowships are not designed to support extensive fieldwork outside the Washington, D.C., area. The program recognizes the importance of establishing ties with counterparts elsewhere in the United States and abroad and understands that professional obligations may sometimes necessi- tate domestic or international travel. However, no funds will be available to support fellows’ profes- sional travel. Fellows are expected to be in residence at the NED for the entirety of the fellowship pe- riod in order to take full advantage of the professional resources available in D.C.
Fellowship Support and Services: Each fellow will receive a monthly stipend for living expenses, plus basic health insurance and roundtrip travel to and from Washington, D.C. Stipends take into ac- count the cost of living in Washington, D.C. Fellows are provided with a fully equipped office, includ- ing internet and email access, and a limited budget for fellowship-related long-distance phone calls.
The World Movement Secretariat staff plays a vital role in helping fellows realize their fellowship ob- jectives by collaborating with them on their fellowship projects and engaging them in ongoing discus- sions about their work.
NED houses a Democracy Resource Center (DRC), which includes a library with some 20,000 works, including books, journals, grantee reports, and other publications on democracy. The DRC’s expert
staff members assist fellows with their research interests. Fellows may enjoy access to other local li- braries as needed.
Cost of Living and Dependents: Applicants should bear in mind that the cost of living (housing, furniture, food, and other essential living expenses) in the Washington metropolitan area is very high and that fellowship stipends are not calculated to cover the financial needs of a family. Fellows who wish to bring family members with them to Washington, D.C. will be expected to cover the costs of their dependents’ roundtrip travel and stay within the United States. The program does not ordinari- ly cover costs associated with dependents’ health insurance. Please note that all dependents traveling to the Unites States on a J-2 dependent visa will be required to have basic health insurance coverage for the full period of their stay.
Visa Issues: Prior to their arrival in the United States, prospective fellows who are neither citizens nor permanent residents of the United States must secure a J-1 exchange visitor visa. The Interna- tional Forum for Democratic Studies assists fellows with the documentation needed to obtain visas.
Office Location and Contact Information: The National Endowment for Democracy is based in downtown Washington, D.C., at 1201 Pennsylvania Ave, NW, Suite 1100, Washington, DC 20004. Centrally located near the White House, the U.S. Congress, the National Mall, and the Smithsonian Institution, our office building sits above Metro Center, one of the major subway stations of the Washington metropolitan area.