Ford Foundation International Fellowships Program (IFP) 2009 for Indian Students: The Ford Foundation International Fellowships Program (IFP) seeks to build a new generation of social justice leaders worldwide. Ford Fellows come from groups and communities that have little access to higher education, and are selected on the strength of their academic achievement, leadership skills and social commitment. By building on Fellows’ familiarity with grass roots problems, IFP seeks to raise the Fellows’ capacity – through knowledge, skills and networks – to become effective leaders in the struggle to improve lives in their communities, countries and regions. (advt)
• The Program is especially designed to support candidates from groups that have historically lacked access
to higher education. Eligible candidates who belong to marginalized and excluded groups and communities
such as scheduled castes, scheduled tribes, other backward classes, religious minorities, women,
physically challenged and those with other kinds of socio-economic deprivation are encouraged to apply.
• Fellows will be chosen on the basis of their academic achievement as well as for their leadership potential
and commitment to community service.
• Fellows may enrol in a master’s level program and may pursue any academic discipline or field of study
consistent with the interests and goals of the Ford Foundation (see IFP Eligible Fields of Study).
• IFP will provide support for a maximum of two years of formal Master’s degree.
40 fellowships are available.
• Once selected, Fellows may enrol in universities in any part of the world, including universities in
India. IFP will provide university placement assistance.
• IFP will support Fellows to undertake appropriate short-term language study and training in research
and computer skills prior to enrolment. Fellows who wish to study overseas will have to take TOEFL or
IELTS language proficiency tests.
• Be Indian nationals or permanent residents, currently residing in the states of Bihar, Chhatisgarh, Gujarat, Jammu & Kashmir, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Orissa, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh or Uttarakhand.
• Hold a Bachelor’s or a Master’s degree from a recognized Indian university with at least 55% marks.
Applicants who already have two post-graduate degrees or equivalent will be given lower preference.
• Have at least three years’ full-time work experience relevant to their proposed area of study.
• Have experience in leadership and community service or development related activities.
Applicants are required to:
• Meet necessary admission requirements and language proficiency standards of the foreign or Indian
university. Selected candidates who need training in English language skills should be able to devote up to
6 to 9 months, if required, to pursue a residential language training program outside their state. This takes
place during the pre-fellowship phase after the announcement of the fellowship and prior to the
commencement of the academic program.
• Pursue a post-graduate degree that will directly enhance their capacity to excel in an academic, policymaking,
practical or artistic field corresponding to the Ford Foundation’s grant-making areas.
• Present a plan specifying how they will apply their studies to social problems or issues in their own countries.
• Demonstrate their commitment to working for these issues following the Fellowship period.
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FORD FOUNDATION INTERNATIONAL FELLOWSHIPS PROGRAM 2009
(for academic programs beginning 2010)
IFP Eligible Fields of Study
The Ford Foundation works in 12 grant-making areas to strengthen democratic values, reduce poverty and injustice, promote international co-operation and advance human achievement. These areas are not to be confused with subjects for post-graduate study. Candidates’ proposed subject must relate to one of the 12 grant-making areas listed below. Further information is available on the Ford Foundation website
1. Arts & Culture 2. Civil Society
3. Community Development 4. Development Finance & Economic Security
5. Education Reform & Scholarship 6. Environment & Development
7. Governance 8. Human Rights
9. Media 10. Religion, Society & Culture
11. Sexuality & Reproductive Health 12. Workforce Development
The Application Process
Stage 1: Interested candidates should complete an IFP Pre-Application Form to reach the IFP office in
New Delhi not later than 15 November 2008. Submit your completed Pre Application Form as
early as possible, preferably within a week of receiving the Form. Pre Application Forms
received after 15 November 2008 will not be considered.
Stage 2: Only eligible candidates will be sent an IFP Final Application Form. Candidates should
complete the Final Application Form and return to the IFP office in New Delhi not later than 15 January 2009.
Stage 3: Final Application Forms will be reviewed and evaluated by a panel of experts from academia,
the social development sector and other related disciplines. Short listed candidates will be invited
to attend regional interviews during April and May 2009.
Stage 4: A National Selection Committee will make the final selections and results will be declared by
August 2009. The fellowships (for academic programs beginning in 2010) will be subject
to the candidates being accepted by the foreign or Indian university, within a year from the
date of the communication of the IFP award, and as per the IFP placement guidelines.
• The Pre Application Form must be complete in all respects. Incomplete forms are ineligible, and will not be
considered. All applications must be completed on original IFP Forms. These must be submitted only to
the IFP New Delhi office.
• Applicants must furnish complete and correct information. While care is taken to ensure timely despatch
of Final Application Forms to the qualifying candidates, IFP will not be liable for any delay or loss of
documents in transit. Please fill correct address and contact details.
• All decisions of the Selection Committees will be final and will not be open to review. Any effort to influence
the decision will be deemed as a ground for disqualification.
• Ford Foundation staff and their family members may not serve on selection panels and are not eligible to
apply for IFP awards. Members of selection committees, staff of the organizations managing the Program
and their family members are also ineligible for IFP awards.
• Please note that this fellowship is offered for a post-graduate degree. It cannot be used for short-term
courses, study visits or post-doctoral programs.
• IFP selects Fellows on the strength of their clearly-stated intention to serve their community and
country of origin, and expects that they will honor this obligation.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What is the International Fellowships Program?
The International Fellowships Program (IFP) is a Ford Foundation-supported program of the New York Citybased International Fellowships Fund. IFP provides fellowships for postgraduate study to individuals from groups or communities that have little access to higher education. Through IFP, the Ford Foundation supports Fellows from twenty-two countries in Asia, Africa, the Middle East, and Latin America, as well as in Russia.
What is the program’s principal goal?
The program’s goal is to enable a diverse group of exceptional men and women from many parts of the world, who would otherwise lack opportunities for advanced study, to pursue post-graduate degrees. This education will help prepare the Fellows to become leaders in fields that further the Ford Foundation’s goals of strengthening democratic values, reducing poverty and injustice, promoting international cooperation, and advancing human achievement. IFP aims to build an enduring cohort of IFP Fellows who can gain from each other’s learning and experience.
Why is the Ford Foundation making this investment in international higher education at this time?
The Ford Foundation has long believed that providing educational opportunities to talented people who use
their knowledge to improve their societies is one of the best possible philanthropic investments. Since the
1950s, the Foundation has granted an estimated $365 million to enable some 30,000 individuals from more
than 70 countries to pursue graduate education. Over the years, Ford fellowship recipients have helped advance knowledge in the natural and social sciences, the humanities, and the arts. Many former Ford fellows have advanced to leadership roles in institutions around the world. Now it is important to help prepare a more diverse generation of future leaders to meet the global challenges of the 21st century. IFP aims to broaden the talent pool of future leaders in selected developing countries by making a special effort to recruit men and women from social groups and communities that have been historically underrepresented in higher education.
Why is there a compelling need for this program in India?
Although both governmental and private sources support different types of fellowship programs, the rapidly increasing need for higher education far exceeds available funding. Opportunities are especially limited for individuals who come from groups or communities that historically have had little access to advanced education.
In the India context, these include scheduled castes, scheduled tribes, other backward classes, religious minorities, women, physically challenged and those with other forms of socio-economic deprivation. It also includes those who live outside major cities or in areas of conflict or post-conflict situations.
When did the India program begin ?
The India IFP program began in 2001. To date there have been 7 selections and 240 fellows have been selected and placed in universities around the world. Several alumni have returned to India and are doing committed work in their respective fields. They have also established the IFP India Alumni Network (IFPIAN).
How are India IFP Fellows selected?
Pre-Applications and Final Applications are submitted to IFP New Delhi. IFP New Delhi convenes regional and national selection panels to ensure that selected candidates meet the highest academic and professional
standards, and that IFP selection criteria are applied in a consistent manner. These panels of scholars, practitioners and other experts assess written applications, interview candidates and make the final selections.
Ford Foundation International Fellowships Program
12, Hailey Road, New Delhi 110 001, India
Tel: (11) 2335 8893, 2335 8894 Fax: (11) 2335 8893
E-mail: [email protected] Website: http://www.ifpsa.org
What are the selection criteria for India IFP fellows?
Fellows are chosen on the basis of their leadership potential and commitment to community or national development, as well as for their academic promise and achievement. Successful candidates must hold a BA or an MA degree and have demonstrated excellence in their undergraduate studies; have experience in community service or development-related activities; intend to pursue formal training that will enhance their leadership skills in fields related to the Foundation’s program interests; present a plan specifying how they will apply their studies to social problems in their own countries; and commit themselves to working on these issues following the fellowship period.
How does IFP assess leadership potential and social commitment?
Many of the most promising applicants identified by IFP selection panels are individuals who have demonstrated a high level of civic engagement in their communities or countries, founded civil society organizations dedicated to social action; and have become positive role models in their societies.
How does the university placement process work?
Fellows may choose to study in a relevant high-quality graduate degree program at a university located anywhere in the world including in India. IFP will offer university placement assistance to Fellows.
What types of support are provided for IFP Fellows?
In addition to financial assistance for travel, living expenses, tuition and related costs for the actual degree program, IFP will offer Fellows short-term pre-fellowship training, including language study and courses in research and computer skills. This is offered over a period of 6 to 9 months, after selection and prior to joining the academic program. The program will also facilitate informal networks through which Fellows may share information and experiences.
How does IFP encourage Fellows who study abroad to return to India?
IFP selects Fellows on the strength of their commitment to serve their communities and countries of origin,
among other key selection criteria, and expects that they will honor this obligation. In addition, IFP support
allows Fellows to pursue professional activities in their home countries during the fellowship period. IFP assists Fellows after they have returned home to stay connected to various IFP networks and to remain current in their respective fields. A robust IFP India Alumni Network (IFPIAN) has been established.
Where do I get further information?
For more information on IFP, log on the Ford Foundation’s website http://www.fordfound.org and on the IFP exclusive website http://www.fordifp.net The exclusive India IFP website is http://www.ifpsa.org