Civic Leader Fellows Program

The Cornell Civic Leaders Fellowship Program (CCLFP) invites two (2) community leaders involved in community development efforts to join the Cornell community as both learners and teachers for an academic year. The program awards $5,000 to each selected fellow. The selection criteria are based on our program goals (see below) and the applicants' interest in furthering their leadership and capacity development through a project, and in developing lasting connections with Cornell University faculty, students and staff. The program is supported by the Alice Cook House, a West Campus Residential Housing, and the Office of Engagement Initiatives.

Civic Leader Fellowship is a partnership between Cornell Public Service Center, Office of Engagement Initiatives, and Alice Cook House.

CCLFP Program Goals:

  • Support leaders by providing assistance in their effort to address critical institutional and community problems whether local or regional.
  • Foster university and community collaboration practices that encourage greater commitment by all
  • Strengthen and build regional university-community collaborative relationships to address local, national or international projects.
  • Support community leaders as they reflect upon past practices, plan for the future and enhance the capacities of their communities, as well as to contribute to instructional and research activities, as appropriate and available.

Fellowship Benefits/Privileges:

  • Fellowship of $5,000 for each fellow. (The award is not automatically tax-exempt).
  • Affiliation with the Cornell Public Service Center.
  • Introduction to Cornell University and its resources such as Cornell netID (for email and access to Cornell electronic resources).
  • Support from and interactions with faculty, undergraduates and/or university staff.
  • Access to Cornell University Human Resources workshops.
  • Be a House Fellow at the Alice Cook House to better interact with Cornell's West Campus residential community.

Please Note: Cornell Civic Leader Fellowship program is intended to support and develop individual's leadership and community development and organizing skils, experience, and expertise.

Eligibility Requirements:

  • Prior experience of economic or community development and/or strong prior history of community involvement.
  • A history of or interest in developing relationships with university students.
  • Residents of Broome, Cayuga, Chemung, Cortland, Seneca, Schuyler, Tioga, or Tompkins County.

Application Guidelines:

A selection committee consisting of faculty, university administrators, previous fellows and community leaders will review all complete applications. Proposals should be brief, no more than six (6) pages and include the following in the order stated:

  1. A cover page with your name, contact information, and a summary of the proposed project that you are currently working on or would like to work on during the fellowship (less than 300 words).
  2. A personal statement of no more than one (1) page highlighting your community experience, and work, along with your hope, and possible challenges in accepting the fellowship.
  3. A current resume and three (3) personal letters of support.

Submit application materials electronically to by Friday, July 5, 2019.

Upon selection, as a CCFLP fellows must be available to:

  • Commit to being on campus a minimum of one day a month from September 2019 - May 2020 to meet with the PSC's Associate Director, Community-Based Learning and Partnership.
  • Attend a recognition/networking reception in early September.
  • Attend an orientation session.
  • Fulfill Alice Cook House Fellows' responsibilities by attending minimum of two (2) house dinners per month, September - April.
  • Complete a Cornell application for employment, a W-2's and an I-9 form, Inventions and Related Property Rights Assignment, Conflic of Interest and other forms for Cornell University.
  • As appropriate, serve as an occasional guest lecturer in campus sponsored workshops, events, courses, and colloquia.
  • Present Fellows' work and learning experience with programs on campus and other possible venues.
  • Present Fellows' end of year project experience on campus during welcome dinner for the 2020-2021 Fellows.
  • Sign a Letter of Agreement with regards to meeting the above expectations and requirements.
  • By the conclusion of the Fellowship, develop a future project proposal (see below).

End of Fellowship:

A future project proposal of no more than two (2) pages (font size 10, single spaced) that includes:

  • Complete description of the project and its objectives.
  • Define the community the project will serve.
  • Explain how the project can be linked to both on-campus work and community capacity-building needs. Identification of university resources, staff or departments which you want to interact is strongly recommended. An indication of any prior interaction with Cornell, in particular the groups being identified.
  • Provide method or criteria by which project will be evaluated and a plan for disseminating results of the project to the community.

Submit completed applications electronically by 5pm, Friday, July 5, 2019 to:

Amy Kuo Somchanhmavong

Associate Director, Community-Based Learning & Parnership

Cornell Public Service Center


For further information, contact or 607-254-8072

The Civic Leaders Fellows Program has been generously supported by John ('74) and Elaine ('77) Alexander. Consider the gift of giving! Donate to the Civic Leaders Fellowship Program!