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Attention, Master’s Students: USAID Donald M. Payne International Development Fellowship Program

USAID Donald M. Payne International Development Fellowship Program

USAID Donald M. Payne International Development Fellowship Program seeks to attract outstanding young people who are interested in pursuing careers in the Foreign Service of the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID)

More information attached and

Deadline: Monday, January 27, 2014

The fellowship is awarded to 5 graduate students enrolled in 2-year masters programs in the following fields:

  • International Affairs
  • Development
  • Economics
  • History
  • Political Science
  • Public Administration
  • Communications
  • Public Policy
  • Business Administration Foreign Languages
  • Agriculture
  • Environmental Sciences
  • Urban Planning
  • Other related fields, excluding law

Fellows will receive up to $20,000 per year toward tuition and mandatory fees and a $15,000 stipend for each academic year for room, board, books and other education-related expenses.  Fellows will also receive up to $10,000 per year in stipend, housing, transportation and other related expenses for summer internships.

Students who successfully complete the Payne Program and USAID Foreign Service entry requirements will receive appointments as Foreign Service Officers with the U.S. Agency for International Development.  Fellows are committed to a minimum of three years of service as a USAID Foreign Service Officer.

Fellows will participate in an orientation at Howard University in May.

Fellows will participate in two summer internships, one in Washington DC before the first year of graduate study, and the second overseas in a USAID Mission between the first and second years of graduate study.

Each fellow will receive mentoring throughout the duration of the fellowship.

Application eligibility includes the following:

  • Applicants must be US citizens
  • Applicants must be seeking admission to enter graduate school in the fall of 2014 for a two-year program at a U.S. university.  They can be in the senior year of their undergraduate studies, graduating by June 2014, or they can be college graduates.
  • Applicants must have a cumulative GPA of 3.2 or higher on a 4.0 scale at the time of application.
  • Applications are due on Monday, January 27, 2014 electronically and include the following:
    • Background information (e.g., name, contact information)
    • A personal statement (in 600 words or less) that discusses the applicant’s reasons for applying, interest in foreign affairs, commitment to pursue a USAID Foreign Service career and any relevant experience or information.
    • A statement (in 400 words or less) from the applicant that discusses his/her need for financial assistance to attend graduate school, including an explanation of:
      • The financial assistance received during undergraduate studies
      • Overall education-related debt
      • Ability/plans to pay for graduate school independently
  • Two letters of recommendation:
    • One from a faculty member who is well acquainted with the individual
    • One from a community leader or other individual who can comment on the applicant’s non-academic accomplishments and his/her potential to serve as a USAID Foreign Service Officer
  • Proof of U.S. citizenship
  • Student Aid Report generated from the FAFSA form.
  • GRE or GMAT scores
  • Official Financial Aid Statement from your senior year, if you received financial aid.
  • Official Transcripts from ALL colleges and universities the applicant has attended for credit.

For more information including FAQs as well as tips for preparing a competitive application, please visit:

For all inquiries, please contact:
    Tessa Henry, Payne Program Officer
    (202) 806-5952 or