The Alfa Fellowship Program is a distinguished international initiative that each year offers up to 18 accomplished young Americans, Britons, and Germans the opportunity to complete a high-level professional development program in Russia.
Over the course of the program, Fellows complete work placements at leading institutions, attend professional seminars, and receive intensive language training. The Fellowship provides a monthly stipend, accommodation, insurance, all program-related travel costs, language training in Russia, and private tutoring in the U.S., U.K., or Germany. Key goals of the Alfa Fellowship Program are to expand networks of American, British, German, and Russian professionals, develop greater intercultural understanding, and advance U.S.-Russian, U.K.-Russian, and German-Russian relations.
Alfa Fellows have a demonstrated interest in Russian and European/Eurasian affairs, exceptional academic and professional credentials, proven personal initiative, and clear goals and expectations for their professional assignments. Fellows tend to be between the ages of 25 and 35 with graduate degrees and professional experience in business, economics, journalism, law, public policy or a related field. Fellows possess leadership potential and are active in community or public service. While Russian language skills vary, most Fellows have studied Russian for at least two years at the post-secondary level.
The Alfa Fellowship Program online application must be submitted by 11:59PM EST on December 1 and all supporting documents must arrive by the same date. In order to gain access to the online application system, please click on the "Further Official Information" button below to find an application request on the official website.
Please be sure to review both the instructions below and the frequently asked questions on the official website prior to beginning your application.
Please review these instructions before completing and submitting your application:
- The Alfa Fellowship Program application must be submitted online no later than 11:59PM EST on December 1, and any supporting documents not submitted online or via email must arrive in hard copy by the same date.
- You may log into, edit, and log out of your application at any time until you have clicked on the “Submit” button. Once an application has been submitted, it is considered final. Please make sure to click “Save” in each section you edit before exiting your application to ensure that all data is saved.
- Prior to submitting your application, please be sure to review the information you provided very carefully by clicking on the “Print Version” tab.
- Once you have submitted your application, you will not be permitted to view or make any changes to the information you provided. However, if you submit the application ahead of the deadline, your recommenders will still be able to submit their letters until 11:59PM on December 1.
- We recommend saving your resume, personal statement, and writing sample as PDF files in order to avoid formatting issues.
The following documents are required as part of your Alfa Fellowship Program application:
To be uploaded by the applicant in the “Documents” section:
- Current resume/CV
- Personal statement
Two pages maximum; please make sure to include your name on this document.
The personal statement should contain very specific information on the applicant’s background, experience, career aspirations, and interest in Russia. It should also include anticipated benefits of participation in the Alfa Fellowship Program for both the applicant and the host institution. It must also include realistic proposals for specific institutions that the applicant believes to be appropriate for his/her professional assignment.
For a complete list of past Alfa Fellows’ work placements, please visit the Professional Assignments page on the official website. Please note that while the personal statement must contain proposals for specific organizations, it is not required to include institutions from this list.
Russian writing sample
One page maximum on a topic of your choice. Please make sure to include your name on this document.
Please note: if you have ever studied Russian, you must submit a writing sample in Russian, regardless of your level. If you have never studied Russian, please submit a statement in English detailing other languages in which you are proficient, and when and where you acquired those language skills. Statements in languages other than English or Russian will not be reviewed.
To be submitted either in hard copy or electronically:
- Official graduate transcripts
These may either be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org by the registrar or mailed directly to the Alfa Fellowship Program in a sealed envelope.Please note: if your degree is from a European university that does not issue official transcripts to third parties, a high-quality color scan of an official version will suffice. If possible, please request a scan to be emailed to email@example.com by your university registrar. If that is not possible, you can email it to us directly yourself.
Please do not submit copies or scans of your diploma verifying your degree. Instead, we require a transcript that contains a list of courses you completed and grades you received. For German applicants, this is a Zeugnis.
- Two letters of recommendation
At least one from someone who knows you in a professional capacity, ideally a current or former supervisor, either submitted by the recommender via the online system or mailed in a sealed envelope to the Alfa Fellowship Program. Please note: regardless of the method of submission, letters of recommendation must be on letterhead and be hand-signed by the recommender.
Additionally, please note that all letters of recommendation must be in English and should be addressed to the Alfa Fellowship Program Selection Committee.
The following documents are optional and can be uploaded online by the applicant in the “Documents” section:
- Undergraduate transcripts
If you feel it would be in your favor for the Selection Committee to review your undergraduate transcript, please upload it. Please note: If you do not have a graduate degree completed or in progress, you must submit an official undergraduate transcript following the instructions for graduate transcripts that are outlined above.
If you choose to upload a photo, please be sure that it is a professional-looking image that depicts you alone.
Please mail any hard copy materials to the following address:
Alfa Fellowship Program
440 Park Avenue South, 2nd Floor
New York, NY 10016
Please do not submit any documents other than those outlined above. Please note that application materials cannot be returned.