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Princeton AlumniCorps believes in fostering and connecting leaders committed to advancing social change. The Princeton Project 55 Fellowship Program provides recent Princeton graduates with formative experiences working in the public interest, instilling in all fellows a greater awareness of critical social issues, a deeper understanding of their capacity to bring about change, and a lifelong commitment to justice and equity.
Project 55 offers Fellows leadership programming and wrap-around support from local volunteers and our national staff with the goal of supporting the transition to full-time nonprofit work. Fellows are placed across the country in organizations across nonprofit and public service sectors. What makes a Project 55 Fellowship unique is our holistic approach to personal and professional development. Becoming a Project 55 Fellow is a chance to explore a lifelong commitment to social justice and join a community of more than 2,000 Princeton alumni who have launched their postgraduate lives through Project 55. Project 55 Fellows have found their experience influenced their personal and professional paths while being connected to valuable relationships that support them in multiple facets of their life.
Each year approximately 40% of our Fellows stay in their placement after their Fellowship concludes, and some have stayed with their organization for more than a decade. After completing their Fellowship, program alumni have continued work with their placement, started their own nonprofits, and built careers in the sector. They’ve stayed engaged with the network by becoming mentors, local area committee volunteers and connected Project 55 Fellows with new opportunities.
We welcome all current Princeton University seniors (including international students) and recent graduates (up to three years) to apply no matter your major or concentration, past experience, or specific skills. Fellowships usually begin in June and July and are complete one year from the determined start date. Organizations that require specific start dates are asked to provide that information in the position description. Start dates should be negotiated before applicants and organizations commit to employment. Fellows must reside in the United States.
Between the nonprofit placement, local and national programming, and mentorship the Fellowship is a full-time commitment. Princeton AlumniCorps is mindful of Fellow bandwidth and therefore candidates are not eligible for the program if they are also participating in any other full-time programs (ex: graduate school).
Note for International students: Optional Practical Training (OPT) status will be required. Candidates must have their work authorization obtained prior to the Fellowship start date and must follow all federal guidelines until they receive their authorization. Failure to obtain work authorization can result in the withdrawal from the position and overall program. Applicants who are not U.S. citizens should notify Princeton AlumniCorps staff and contact Princeton University’s Davis International Center to determine the appropriate documents needed for employment in the U.S. post-graduation. Candidates are strongly encouraged to attend one of the Optional Practical Training (OPT) seminars offered by the Center. Davis International Center.
Before you apply to the Project 55 Fellowship Program, make sure you have considered the following:
Attend a Learning Session or Office Hours! Meet with the Program Manager at any of the listed learning sessions or by scheduling an appointment for office hours. This first step will allow you to learn more about the Project 55 Fellowship Program, and provide you with an opportunity to ask specific questions related to the application process and the Fellowship year.
Know a Project 55 Fellows? Ask them about their Fellowship! If you have a personal connection with any of our Fellows or Fellowship alumni, we encourage you to reach out to them to learn about their experience. If you’re not sure if you know a program alumnus or current Fellow, then check out our Fellowship Directories! We do not distribute personal contact information of our Fellows or alumni without their consent. We also do not provide contact information for our organizations and request that applicants do not directly contact partner organizations.
Do you understand the application process expectations and the commitment Fellows make when participating in our program? Make sure you review Princeton Alumnicorps expectations above as it has guidance for your application and candidacy process:
Do you have everything you need for your application? Review the Application Requirements Below. Consider all the materials you will need and allow yourself enough time to update your resume, access your unofficial transcript, request a letter of recommendation, complete the essay portion of your application, and submit your $50 fee or application fee waiver.
Are there any other commitments you are considering prior to starting your Fellowship? Do you want to spend time with loved ones? Attend a particular event or have a trip planned? Do you have volunteer or graduate opportunities you are considering? Keep in mind that Project 55 Fellows commit to at least one year (sometimes two) with their organization and start dates are typically between June and September. Start dates will be based on the organization’s needs and may or may not be flexible. There is also the required Fellowship Orientation in May that all Fellows must attend. Consider everything you need and want to accomplish this summer carefully. Talk with family, friends, and mentors. Accepting a Project 55 Fellowship may mean saying no to other opportunities prior to starting!