Gaither (Carnegie) JR Fellows Program


History and Purpose: The Carnegie Endowment for International Peace was founded in 1910 by Andrew Carnegie with a gift of $10 million, dedicated to advancing cooperation between nations and promoting active international engagement by the United States. It is now a global network of policy research centers in Russia, China, Europe, the Middle East, India, and the US. Their mission is to advance the cause of peace through analysis and development of fresh policy ideas and direct engagement and collaboration with decision-makers in government, business, and civil society. Carnegie Endowment

 Award description: The James C. Gaither Junior Fellows Program at the CEIP is designed to provide a substantive work experience for students who have a serious career interest in the area of international affairs. Approximately 12-14 students will be hired to work as employees at Carnegie in Washington, DC on a full-time basis for a period of one year. These “junior fellows” are selected from a pool of nominees from close to 400 participating colleges and are matched with senior associates – academics, former government officials, lawyers, and journalists from around the world – to work on a variety of international affairs issues. They conduct research, contribute to op-eds, papers, reports, and books, edit documents, participate in meetings with high-level officials, contribute to congressional testimony and organize briefings attended by scholars, activists, journalists, and government officials.

Research areas for this year's (2021-2022) competition and qualifications are below.
You can (and should) learn about these research areas and the senior fellows you might support by becoming a regular reader of the CEIP website. Click on Research Areas and you'll see where you need to go next.

A. Democracy, Conflict, and Governance
B. American Statecraft Background in history, international relations theory, or international economics is essential, along with an interest in military issues and U.S. foreign policy process.
C. Nuclear Policy
D. Technology and International Affairs – Strong writing skills (ability to write well and assimilate feedback in a timely manner), diverse research skills (e.g., ability to find and distill content from scholarly and gray literature, ability to use Excel to organize and analyze information), attention to detail, and ability to communicate effectively with a diverse team are essential.
E. Middle East Strong reading fluency and the ability to perform academic as well as on-line research in Arabic essential. Strong background in Middle East politics and/or history is a plus.
F. International Security and Political Economy [to work with the International Security and South Asia Programs] -- Quantitative data analysis and GIS skills are required. A strong mathematical background is a plus. Ideal candidates will have a strong academic background in international relations theory, political theory, or international political economy along with an interest in military issues.
G. Asia Program (China) – Mandarin Chinese reading skills required
H. Asia Program (Japan) – Japanese reading skills required
I. Asia Program (Economics) – Mandarin Chinese reading skills a huge plus. Strong background in economics essential.
Note: Applicants for the above Asia program with skills in two or more of the above areas (Chinese language skills, Japanese language skills, strong economics background) will be at an advantage when applying, regardless of their essay selection.
J. Russia and Eurasia Excellent Russian reading skills required.
K. Africa Program - The program examines the economic, social, political, and external factors shaping Africa today, with the aim of helping regional and international policy actors strengthen their contributions to a prosperous and stable African future.

Funding details: Junior Fellows receive a monthly salary equivalent to approximately $43,000 annually (subject to federal, state, and local taxes) with a generous benefits package. Fellows are responsible for their own housing arrangements. Fellowships begin on August 1st and last approximately one year.

Eligibility: Applicants must be graduating seniors, or have graduated in the last academic year AND must not have begun graduate studies. Applicants do not have to be U.S. citizens however, all applicants must be eligible to work in the U.S. Candidates should have a very strong transcript overall GPA (at least 3.7+) and have substantial coursework in the topic for which they are applying. Some program areas, as noted above, require specific language or qualitative skills in addition to coursework in the research area topic.

How to Apply

Seniors and alumni must apply through the campus process. This includes receiving essay feedback and guidance from the Office of Fellowships as well as from a faculty member knowledgeable about the research area; submitting a complete application by the above internal deadline, and requesting recommendation letters to be submitted by that date as well. All materials are submitted through the AC Student and Postgraduate Application Portal which is now open. Applications will be reviewed by the Committee on Student Fellowships, who will decide on nominees. Nominees will then be guided through final revisions, and their applications sent by the Director of Fellowships as pdf email attachments to the Foundation. Endorsement: Amherst may nominate two candidates, plus a third if at least one of the three is from a historically underrepresented group.

Application materials: The Carnegie application includes two essays - a short personal statement plus an analytical (not research) essay responding to a prompt corresponding to the research area of interest, transcripts, a resume, and a completed Carnegie Foundation form.  See the Gaither/Carnegie Application page for essay prompts and additional information.

For Recommenders

Content:  the Gaither/Carnegie program is interested primarily in your assessment of the candidate’s analytical, writing, and research capability. They want to know if the candidate is mature, reliable, and skillful as a researcher. More specifically, they want to know the breadth and depth of the candidate's background in the content area of their research (the applicant chooses one of several research areas listed above) and how well-developed the candidate's quantitative or language skills are (if required). In short, if you would jump at the chance to have this student as your research assistant, tell them why. The candidate should provide you with their analytical essay, resume, and transcript. Format and submission: Letters have no word limit. They should be presented on institutional (virtual is fine) letterhead, signed, and uploaded to the AC Student and Postgraduate Application portal in response to an email from that system, by January 4, 2022. Please do not upload locked/secured letters. They make the entire application inaccessible to reviewers. If the candidate is endorsed, the letter will be forwarded as is with their application.

Foundation website: Carnegie (James C. Gaither) Junior Fellows Program

Christine Overstreet, Director of Fellowships
212 Converse Hall, 413-542-2536, 
Eric Myers, Associate Director, Fellowships                                 
Mailing address: Office of Fellowships, 212 Converse Hall, Amherst College, Amherst, MA 01002

Amherst College Carnegie Winners

Nancy Tang ’14: Southeast Asia program for the 2014-2015 year; Jeffery Feldman ’15 and Nik Nevin ’15 were Junior Fellows in the Energy and Climate Program and the Middle East Program, respectively, for the 2015-16 year. Joshua Ferrer '17 was a finalist for the democracy program.