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White House Fellowship Program

White House


The selection process is very competitive. Each year, there are 500-800 applicants for 11 to 19 fellowships. The application form is designed to reveal remarkable achievement early in an applicant's career, demonstrated leadership qualities, a commitment to serve others, and the skills required for a successful year as a special assistant to a high-level government official.

Approximately 100 of the most promising applicants are selected for interviews by 10 regional panels. Based on the results of these interviews, candidates are selected to be national finalists. National finalists are required to undergo comprehensive background investigations to insure that they qualify for the security clearance necessary for their fellowship work assignments. National finalists are interviewed over three-and-a-half days at a location near Washington, DC, by members on The President's Commission. The Commission then recommends to the President those individuals it finds most qualified for the Fellowship.

The intensive work experience is the fellowship's core. White House Fellows spend a year as full-time, paid assistants to senior White House staff, the Vice President, Cabinet officers and other top-ranking government officials. Their assignments demand a capacity for quick learning and a willingness to work hard. Typically, Fellows write speeches, help draft and review propose legislation, answer Congressional inquiries, chair meetings, and conduct briefings. At the end if the Fellowship year, most Fellows return to their homes and their former occupations more experienced in public policy decision-making and better prepared to contribute to their professions their communities, and the country. Inclusive dates of the Fellowship year are September 1- August 31.


* Applicants must be U.S. citizens
* Employees of the federal government are not eligible unless they are career military personnel
* Applicants should be out of school and working in their chosen profession
* Applicants are expected to have a record of remarkable achievement early in their careers; the skills required to serve at the highest levels of government; the potential to be leaders in their professions; and proven commitment to public service
* There are no formal age restrictions; however, the fellowship program was created to give selected Americans the experience of government service early in their careers
* Fellowships are awarded on a strict non-partisan basis.
* The Commission encourages balance and diversity in all aspects of the program


Fellows receive a salary and benefits form the agency where they work. Salary is paid at the federal pay grade GS-14, step 3 (approximately $74,000).


February 1, 2002 - Applications must be postmarked on or before this date.

Application and for more information
Completed applications include the following:
* One original and two copies of application
* Two cards
* Sealed, signed recommendations

Mail one original and two copies of the application to:

The White House Fellows Program
c/o O.P.M. - Shelia Coates
1900 E Street, NW, Room B431
Washington, DC 20415

For further, more complete information about application evaluation information, students are referred to the web site at:

The President's Commission on White House Fellowships
712 Jackson Place, NW
Washington, DC 20503
(202) 395-4522
(202) 395-6179 fax

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