Learning leadership skills, embracing the power of community action, and experiencing new cultures — these are just a few things Curtis Fellows have benefited from in years past.
The Curtis Fellowship, conceived and funded by Global Citizen board member and former long-time Pearl Jam manager Kelly Curtis through the Vitalogy Foundation, is an annual leadership development program to support young people ages 17 to 20 from underserved communities in the US who embody the values of global citizenship.
Applications for the 2021 Curtis Fellowship will open on Feb. 18 and will close on April 5. To learn more about eligibility, requirements, and what you should include in your application, go here.
Through the Curtis Fellowship, fellows will be supported with professional and personal development through an innovative and engaging curriculum exploring complex social issues, methods to advocate for change, professional skills, and more. They'll participate in weekly sessions — about two hours per week — engaging in groups and individual activities that focus on professional development, personal growth, advocacy, cultural exposure, social justice, and equity.
All fellows accepted into the program will receive a $10,000 scholarship to be used toward education expenses or tuition at the end of the fellowship. The program will also include an all-expenses paid trip to New York City, if travel permits.
This year's fellows will complete a community project that will address their theme or topic of choice, each receiving a grant to plan and execute their project. After completing the program, Curtis Fellows will be able to earn letters of recommendations, receive guidance on future endeavors from industry leaders, and join a growing network of Curtis Fellow alumni.
Previous fellows have expressed how the program impacted their lives — during and following the Curtis Fellowship.
“I've been able to take what I learned from this program and apply it into so many phases of life," said Darrell, a 2018 Curtis Fellow from Smiths Station, Alabama. "I was exposed to many role models, mentors, and heroes throughout this program and in return, I've been able to be a role model and mentor for young people in my community.”
For Roheena, a 2019 Curtis Fellow from Fairfax, Virginia, the program helped her learn that it "takes genuine care and generosity to raise a healthy society."
"The Curtis [Fellowship] program has been a really significant part of my life," she said. "I’m really excited to continue on as an alum."
I came out with a new view on my future and what I want to accomplish, some of the best times of my life, and with a new family that inspires me every day.
The program also "completely changed" the life of Noor, a 2019 Curtis Fellow from Richmond, Texas.
"Because of this program, I feel like a new and better person," she said. "It can be hard to put into words how much that trip meant to me, but I came out with a new view on my future and what I want to accomplish, some of the best times of my life, and with a new family that inspires me every day."
Timothy, a 2019 Curtis Fellow from Tallahassee, Florida, said: "I could never have imagined that the scared Tim hiding in the shadows of the beaten-down streets of Florida would grow up to be a Global Citizen who helps fight for world issues that affect millions of people."
You can learn more about the Curtis Fellowship, and how to apply, here.