2018 Fellowship Application

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Fellowship Application

This is the 2018 Ethiopian Diaspora Fellowship application. Please read the eligibility requirements and all application directions carefully BEFORE YOU BEGIN. You will not be able to save your application and come back at another time to finish it. We suggest downloading the 2018-2019 Fellowship Application Preparation Worksheet and completing the short answer responses with the correct word count in a Word document prior to beginning the online application.

The application process consists of 4 sections;  

    1. Directions: This section includes a summary of the EDF program design, eligibility requirements, selection process,  financial obligations, expectations for fellows, and anticipated timeline.
    2. Project Descriptions: The Project Descriptions Guide will provide you information on the partners available and a list of qualifications needed to serve at that partner organization.
    3. Application: The application consists of background questions, short answer responses, resume/CV, and the contact information for three professional references.
    4. Payment: Application fee is $25 and is due upon submission HERE. Only applications that are paid in full will be reviewed. Please email apply@ethiopiandiasporafellowship.org if you have any issues with your application fee.


**All sections of this application (including the application fee) need to be completed to be considered for the fellowship. Any questions about this application should be emailed to apply@ethiopiandiasporafellowship.org . The application, in its entirety, must be submitted by 11:59 pm PST by October 15, 2018.






What is Ethiopian Diaspora Fellowship?

The Ethiopian Diaspora Fellowship (EDF) is a non-profit organization that helps diaspora professionals (ages 19-35) develop their leadership, service, and creative storytelling skills through a six-month fellowship. EDF aims to be an agent for positive change by connecting talented professionals with organizations and people in Ethiopia through a transformative service experience.


What are the program components?

Fellows + Ethiopia = EDF

Before heading to Ethiopia, fellows participate in pre-departure training--an online class and a week-long institute with workshops focused on: leadership, service, creative storytelling, personal identity development, intercultural communication, and team-building.

Once in Ethiopia, fellows are expected to work as a regular member of their respective partner organizations, living in Addis Ababa and attending work five days a week. Additionally, fellows will live together and are expected to participate in mid-fellowship and post-fellowship trainings as a group. Throughout the six-month period, fellows will also submit various storytelling assignments and have bi-weekly check-ins (virtual and in-person) with EDF staff.



What does the fellowship include?

  • Extensive training curriculum
  • Housing during pre-departure training in Los Angeles, CA
  • Transportation in Los Angeles, CA
  • Round trip plane ticket from Los Angeles to Addis Ababa (Note: outbound flights from Addis Ababa cannot be changed to other cities)
  • Rent/housing (including housekeeping staff) expenses for six months in Ethiopia
  • Monthly stipend of 10,000 ETB*
  • Transportation cost to and from partner organizations
  • Continuous opportunities for leadership, service, and creative storytelling skill development
  • A sense of community through the cohort-model
  • Active and engaged alumni group


If you’re covering all that, what do you need from me?

  • EDF requires a $500 non-refundable program fee upon acceptance as a fellow
  • The fellow will also be responsible for crowdfunding an additional $1000 through the Crowdrise platform (provided by EDF) for a total of $1,500 program fee (approximately the cost of a round-trip ticket)
  • Transportation to Los Angeles, California for training
  • The cost of food during pre-departure training in Los Angeles (1 week).
  • Yellow Card (an Ethiopian-American diaspora ID)  



In order to be eligible for EDF, applicants must:

  • Be over 19 years-old (most fellows are between the ages of 22-32)
  • Be of Ethiopian descent (by either one or both parents)
  • Have legal residence or citizenship in North America (including Canada)
  • Have had completed at least 2 years of post-secondary education
  • Demonstrate a desire to serve and lead their generation of Ethiopian diaspora
  • Have professional skills and experience that align with the needs of a partner organization


EDF is looking for candidates with specific ideas about what they will offer to organizations, who have a general understanding of the Ethiopian culture, and demonstrate flexibility and patience in challenging environments. Ideal candidates are collaborative, supportive, and self-aware.



  • You are required to attend all training sessions.
  • You are required to live in the same residence with the other fellows for the entire 6-months in Ethiopia.
  • You are required to abide by the office culture and professional norms of your respective partner organization.
  • You are required to complete all storytelling assignments.
  • You are required to sign a fellowship contract detailing the program obligations and expectations.



    • Applications Open: September 1st, 2018
    • New Partners Revealed: first week of September
    • Applications Close: October 15, 2018 (Monday 11:59pm PST) 
    • Selection Process: Oct. 20th - Nov. 15th
      • Selection Committee review applications
      • Partner interviews
      • Reference checks & interviews for semi-finalists
    • Fellows Notified: early November 
    • Fellowship Acceptance Deadline and Deposit Due: mid- November
    • Pre-Training Online Class: November - December
    • Mandatory Training in L.A.: early January
    • Fellows leave for Ethiopia: second week of January
    • Fellowship Program Complete: July



Contact Information

Biographical Information

Prior Experience

We would like to know your prior personal experiences. Please check box for "yes." This will help us build the training curriculum and place you at the correct partner organization based in Addis Ababa. We encourage diaspora with all levels of familiarity with Ethiopia to apply--both those who have been and who have not been to Ethiopia are eligible. EDF fellows are collaborative and interdependent with cohort and EDF staff/advisors. We encourage you to think about this aspect of EDF’s organizational culture as you write your responses.


Although not required, we would like to know your language capabilities. This will help us build the training curriculum and place you at the correct partner organization based in Addis Ababa.

Personal Statements

Please tell us more about yourself by answering the following questions. Answer each question in 350 words or less.

Professional Statements

Please tell us more about your professional self in the following questions. Answer each question in 350 words or less.

Fellowship Statements

Please tell us how you are going to fulfill the fellowship requirements. Answer each question in 350 words or less.

Fellowship Ranking

Please rank the fellowship positions from your highest level of interest to your lowest level of interest. We strongly suggest that each applicant completes additional research into the partner organization, in addition to reading the position descriptions.

When ranking, please keep in mind:

  • Description of the position
  • Qualifications requested - take into consideration your professional, academic and personal journey.
  • Organization background, goals, and strategy (from their websites and social).
  • Reporting Manager - their background, and professional trajectory
  • Organizational culture and management culture.

The Selection Committee will evaluate your partnership choice, and partner organizations will interview potential applicants. You are not guaranteed your top choice and many times placements outside of the top choice results in greater professional and personal development.

***Partner deadlines have been extended to Ethiopian New Year (9.11.2018).  If you do not see a position you are interested in, please check back after 9.11.2018 for the list of new partners. ***

For The Win

Application Fee

*You must submit your application fee within 24 hours of submitting this application to be considered.

Submit your application fee ($25) here. Please remember to submit the correct amount based on the date of application.