The Fellowship

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Spend eight months immersed alongside the global majority in Brazil, Ecuador or India. Develop the insights, skills, and network you’ll need for a lifetime of social impact.


U.S. and United World College students who have finished high school and not yet enrolled in college.


September 2021 – April 2022
cancelled due to COVID-19

Application Deadlines

To be announced

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Why The Fellowship

An extended immersion

As a Fellow, you’ll spend eight months immersed in a different country and culture where you’ll build language fluency, develop resilience, and become part of a family a world away from home. Our vetted and welcoming host families, apprenticeship supervisors, and language tutors ensure that you’re not just a tourist: you’re an integral part of the local community. Throughout the experience, you can count on our incredible Team Leaders to provide coaching and support to keep you squarely in your stretch zone.

Curriculum for deeper understanding

Global Citizen Year’s curriculum creates the context for understanding complex global issues through the lens of lived experience. Your immersion is punctuated by Learning Seminars where the cohort comes together to learn about the historical and social context for the perspectives and dynamics they’ve observed. At Learning Seminars, you’ll reflect on identity, bias, power and privilege, to better understand your place in the world, and to build meaningful relationships among those with differing perspectives. The wrap-around curriculum exposes you to a variety of life experiences, and facilitates the integration of these perspectives into your own values and sense of purpose.

A commitment to equity and inclusion

80% of our Fellows have received some level of need-based financial aid, and more than 30% received a full scholarship. We are committed to selecting leaders with the highest potential, regardless of financial circumstances. Since 2010 we have awarded over $25 million in scholarships — more than all other “gap year” programs combined — to ensure that access is not limited by ability to pay. By investing in promising young people who reflect our society’s diversity we’re changing the composition – and operating system – of our future leaders.


History demonstrates that ideas don’t change the world — leaders do. Global Citizen Year is transforming the trajectory and impact of future leaders. By joining Global Citizen Year, you’ll get access to the most influential changemakers of our time, and join a network of young leaders dedicated to solving the world’s most complex challenges.

With an alumni network of 1,200 and growing, the Global Citizen Year community is a source of collaboration, opportunity, and support — for life. Our alumni are thriving in colleges and careers in over 60 countries; they’re being honored with Fulbrights, Davis Peace Prizes, and Gates Millennium Scholarships; they’re working at The New York Times, Airbnb, Teach For America, and Tesla. Global Citizen Year alumni are already having an outsized impact on society; and they’re just getting started!

Fernanda (Brazil ‘17) got hands-on experience tackling global issues.

"I’ve developed my public speaking skills and made an impact on hundreds of people by motivating them to take care of our planet."

See Fernanda's Story
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