International Development Fellows Program FAQs

The International Development Fellows Program

How many fellows do you select each year?

CRS accepts approximately 20 to 30 fellows. We expect to select 25 fellows for August 2016.

How many applications do you receive?

In the past 3 years, CRS has received 335 to 753 applications per year.

When will I know if I am accepted?

Approximately 125 candidates will be selected for phone interviews from October through mid-January. Of these, 50 to 60 will be chosen for a full day of interviews in late February/early March. Interview invitations will be extended by early February. We will make offers for the fellowship in late April.

How much is the stipend?

For 2015, the stipend is $25,622. Fellows pay their portion of health insurance premiums like other CRS employees. Depending on their country assignment, some fellows may receive a cost-of-living adjustment.

What kind of work will I do?

Fellows support multiple projects, are exposed to many elements of project management, and work with various sectors. They also do rotations in Finance and other departments. All of this prepares fellows for management positions later in their careers.

What countries can I work in?

The list of country programs hosting fellows changes from year to year. We place fellows in all regions where we work, with the greatest number of positions in Africa. Please see more Information on the Fellowship for the locations of fellows in 2014‒2015.

Can I choose the country or region where I will be placed?

Fellowship placements are made considering language ability, a fellow’s experience, and the needs of country programs and regions. While personal preferences are considered, we do not guarantee a geographical or sectoral match. If focus in a specific sector or placement in a particular country is important to you above all else, then the fellowship program may not be the best fit for you.

Will I get to travel?

Fellows’ job descriptions vary widely depending on the needs of the country programs. Fellows generally travel regularly within their country of placement and at least once outside of it on a temporary duty assignment.

What will my housing be like?

CRS provides safe, furnished housing for each fellow. CRS fellows have a standard of living that could be described as above that of Peace Corps volunteers but below that of someone in the Foreign Service. You will have electricity, running water and security services, if necessary, but not unlimited cable TV. Working in poor and vulnerable communities, CRS fellows do not have the same standard of living as other CRS employees.

  Fellows and spouses at The Mount of Olives in Jerusalem's Old City.  Photo Credit: Maggie Holmesheoran
Fellows and spouses at The Mount of Olives in Jerusalem's Old City. Photo Credit: Maggie Holmesheoran
Can spouses accompany fellows?

CRS will cover the costs of airfare, insurance and immunizations for accompanying spouses and dependents. As a Catholic agency, we cannot cover the costs of non-married partners.

Will I be placed in a dangerous location?

The safety of staff is CRS’ top priority. Fellows are placed in non-danger pay locations. CRS continuously monitors safety and has a standard protocol for heightened security levels. Because safety and security change over time, you may be asked to relocate if the security levels increase in your country program.

Does CRS help defer student loan payments?

Deferment decisions are made at the discretion of lenders. CRS will provide documentation regarding participation in the program and the stipend amount. Fellows have received deferments in the past.