CEIP-Gaither Junior Fellowship

Location: Washington, DC Experience Type: Nomination Based Fellowship Awards

Grinnell is one of nearly 400 colleges and universities that may nominate up to two students or recent alumni for competitive one-year fellowships at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace in Washington, DC, the oldest international affairs think tank in the United States. Recipients serve as research assistants in a particular field and are compensated with salary and benefits that adds up to ~$45,000.

Note: prior to 2016, this award was known as the Carnegie Junior Fellowship

Eligibility: Members of the Classes of 2023 and 2024 are eligible to apply, as long as they have not yet begun graduate studies. International students may apply as long as they are eligible to work in the USA for a full year following graduation (from late August though June/July), which typically means an F1 visa status. The foundation reports that the average Junior Fellow GPA is 3.8 and significant coursework in international relations, history, political science, economics, Russian, Arabic, or Chinese. International experience, such as a semester abroad, is preferred, as are candidates who plan a career related to international relations. Independent study, such as a MAP, or assisting a professor with research (especially in a field related to international relations) is also a great help but is not required. Applicants must be nominated by Grinnell College.

Campus deadline: Tuesday, November 21, 2023 from 10 a.m.-noon and 1-5 p.m.

National deadline: Tuesday, January 16, 2024

Fellowship URL: https://carnegieendowment.org/about/jr-fellows

Campus Application Checklist:  CEIP-Gaither Junior Fellows Campus Application Checklist, 2023-2024

CEIP-Gaither Junior Fellows Bulletin: CEIP-Gaither Bulletin for 2024-2025 Fellow Year


How to Apply

Grinnell may annually nominate two to three applicants for this fellowship. To apply for nomination, please follow the Campus Application Checklist (see above).

Our nominating committee, typically composed of professors from the Political Science, Economics, Social Sciences departments, will interview applicants in late November into early December and announce our two nominees before winter break. Final applications are due to the Carnegie Endowment in mid-January. Candidates must apply through Grinnell College and may not apply independently. Candidates should not contact the Carnegie Endowment directly.


Ethical Guidelines

All applicants are expected to adhere to these ethical guidelines.


About the Award

The Carnegie Endowment for International Peace is the oldest (est. 1910) and one of the leading think-tanks in Washington, DC, highly respected throughout the world for its thoughtful, academic responses to international crises. Their James C. Gaither Junior Fellows Program offers an extraordinary opportunity to work for a year in Washington, DC, as a paid research assistant to some of the world’s best scholars in the realm of international relations. According to an earlier iteration of the institution’s website, “Junior Fellows provide research assistance to scholars, working on Carnegie Endowment’s projects, which change year to year. Junior Fellows have the opportunity to conduct research for books, participate in meetings with high-level officials, contribute to congressional testimony and organize briefings attended by scholars, activists, journalists and government officials.” A Grinnell alumnus who served as a Junior Fellow, Geoff Swenson ’03, compared his experience to attending a university with forty professors and eight students. Fellows have the chance to work closely with senior scholars, to think deeply about international relations, and to publish their thoughts. Junior Fellows salary and benefits is ~$45,000 package. Anticipated program fields for the 2023-2024 program year are as follows:

  1. Democracy, Conflict, and Governance Program.
  2. American Statecraft.
  3. Nuclear Policy.
  4. Technology and International Affairs – Strong writing skills and research skills are essential.
  5. Middle East ProgramStrong 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 huge plus.
  6. International Security and Political Economy (to work with the South Asia Program) – Quantitative data analysis and GIS skills are required. A strong mathematical background is a plus. An academic background in international relations theory or international political economy along with an interest in military issues is essential.
  7. Asia Program – Mandarin Chinese language skills are essential. Proficiency in another Asian language is a plus.
  8. Russia and Eurasia ProgramExcellent Russian and/or Ukranian reading skills required.
  9. Africa Program.
  10. Global Order and Institutions
  11. Sustainability, Climate and Geopolitics Basic data skills (such as helping create graphs or tables for Carnegie publications) are a plus. Applicants should have completed coursework related to sustainability and climate issues.
  12. Europe Fluency and the ability to perform research in a European language other than English are a plus. Background knowledge on European politics is essential.

Applications are judged on the quality of a written essay, related details study and/or work experience, grades, recommendations, and personal interviews. The three-page ​​​essay is a key factor in being invited to an interview (assuming good grades and a demonstrated interest in international relations), and the interview is key to obtaining the Fellowship.

The application is available through the Assistant Dean and Director of Global Fellowships and Awards.


Special Promotion (Began October 2016)

The Carnegie Endowment for International Peace has an updated global app that allows you to download content from across their six centers on any mobile device. The app is now responsive to your language preferences and is available in Arabic, Chinese, and Russian as well as English. It can also prioritize content from their closest regional center if it knows your location.