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The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine
Jefferson Science Fellowship
Fellowships Office
Policy and Global Affairs
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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS                    
 

I am interested in applying for this fellowship, but I am not sure if I am competitive. 

Prospective applicants can refer to biographies and profiles of past Jefferson Science Fellows to compare qualifications. While academic stature is an important consideration in selection, other factors are of equal importance (see Eligibility and Selection Criteria). Candidates will be asked to articulate important issues in science, technology, engineering, and medicine that impact foreign policy and/or international development and to demonstrate an understanding of how their knowledge could be used to inform decision-making.
 

I am interested in applying, or a colleague is interested in applying, but we do not know if our university holds a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the National Academy of Sciences (NAS). How can we find out?

E-mail jsf@nas.edu and you should receive an answer within a few days.
 

How is funding managed for the Jefferson Science Fellows (JSF) program?

The Fellow will be paid a stipend or per diem of approximately $50,000 (if relocating to Washington, D.C.). A $10,000 travel budget is provided through the NAS for fellowship-related travel, and additional travel funds may be provided by the Fellow’s bureau or office. Under the MOU, the Fellow’s home institution will be responsible for all salary and benefits due to the Fellow during that academic year.
 

What is the timeline for the JSF program selection process?

The timeline can be viewed here. 
 

Why is there such a long period of time between the selection of Fellows and the Fellows' start date?

Once Fellows are selected for a JSF award, they must go through a U.S. government security clearance process that can take anywhere from 2 to 6 months. To assure that  Fellows can begin a productive fellowship year in mid-August (to coincide with the academic calendar), Fellows are selected in January.
 

Do Jefferson Fellows get placed in an office at the U.S. Department of State or the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) or do they get to choose their assignment there?

The process for finding a placement at the U.S. Department of State or USAID is similar to a job interview process. Participating bureaus and offices will express their interest in certain finalists, and appointments will be scheduled for these finalists to meet with individuals from these bureaus and offices during Interview Week. Work statements from all participating offices and bureaus will be provided to finalists, and finalists will be able make arrangements for additional interviews with offices and bureaus that have indicated their availability. Most finalists will meet with several different bureaus and offices during Interview Week; however, final placement and an award offer depends on mutual interest between each party and with guidance from the Office of the Science and Technology Adviser and USAID. This process ensures that Fellows are placed in the best possible position within the U.S. Department of State or USAID.
 

Which bureaus and offices within the U.S. Department of State and USAID have had opportunities for Jefferson Science Fellows?

A list of U.S. Department of State bureaus and offices can be found here.

A list of USAID bureaus and offices can be found here

For a more comprehensive look at Jefferson Fellows' experiences at the U.S. Department of State or USAID, visit Jefferson Fellows Bios and Profiles.

 

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