Black Family Fellowship

The Black Family Fellowship provides vital financial support and a comprehensive leadership development program for up to 25 students annually at Harvard Kennedy School, Harvard Business School, and Harvard Law School who are veterans and active duty military students from the United States.

This landmark program builds upon what is increasingly clear: that young men and women who have served and often sacrificed for their country represent some of the brightest hopes of their generation to bring fresh, responsible, and ethical leadership to the United States and to the world.

Black Family Fellows will participate in a unique leadership development program administered by the Center for Public Leadership that will cultivate core competencies that are central to public leadership, including promoting strong moral character and ethics; mastering the arts of persuasion and negotiation; leading effective teams and organizations; and fostering sound decision-making. Fellows will participate in the following programming:

  • Hands-on experiential learning opportunities including an Outward Bound experience;
  • A welcome retreat with the full community of CPL Fellows;
  • Engagement with prominent leaders from the military as well as business, government and non-profits, sharpening fellows’ understanding of how they can navigate the civilian world;
  • A leadership discussion series focused on bridging the “civilian-military divide” with leadership development opportunities for veterans who are working to transition from military to civilian leadership.
  • A field experience trip focused on a particular theme or institution of interest, designed to strengthen Black Family Fellows’ cross-sector leadership capability through engagement with leaders and organizations across the public, private and civil society sectors.
  • Service learning opportunities: Through the Center for Public Leadership’s Veteran’s Impact Day, Black Family Fellows will teach and coach civilian students to serve and connect with veterans from around the city of Boston.

Upon graduation, Black Family Fellows will join a vibrant community of more nearly 800 Center for Public Leadership fellowship program alumni who are committed to advancing the public interest

    Dave Dauphinais for Black Family"Military veterans are often drawn to communities that serve a transcendent cause. When I made my transition from active duty and came to Harvard Kennedy School, I found a similar sense of purpose in the Center for Public Leadership. Being a CPL fellow meant that I was surrounded by a community that was working for something greater than themselves. What better environment can a veteran ask for to learn?"

    -Dave Dauphinais, MPP '18
    Fmr Lieutenant Commander, US Navy

    APPLICATION: HARVARD KENNEDY SCHOOL

    Step 1: Apply to Harvard Kennedy School. Application deadline is Monday, December 3, 2018 at 5:00 pm EST.

    Step 2: Apply for the Black Family Fellowship. Application for Harvard Kennedy School students is February 4, 2019. To apply for the Black Family Fellowship, please visit the HKS Student Financial Services website

    Applicants must submit:

    1. A biographical profile, not to exceed 150 words. (This profile should be short, concise and in the third person.)  Please include the following highlights: an introductory sentence including your name; the degree you are pursuing at Harvard Kennedy School in addition to any joint degree at Harvard or concurrent degree program at another graduate or professional institution; where you are from and where you currently reside; an overview and highlights of your relevant work/professional experience; significant leadership achievements including awards or certifications; and educational credentials with the degrees earned and institutions attended.
       

    2. A document containing written responses to the following two eassy prompts: 1. Please provide a concrete example of your leadership in the past and discuss how you plan to bring your experience, education, and leadership capacity to bear to advance the common good. (750 words) 2. Please discuss your interest in the Black Family Fellowship and how your leadership goals have motivated you to apply (200 words or less)

    Interviews

    Finalists for the Black Family Fellowship will be interviewed spring, 2019 by members of the Black Family Fellowship selection committee.

    Please visit our
    Fellowship FAQs page for more information.

    APPLICATION: HARVARD BUSINESS SCHOOL

    Step 1: Apply to Harvard Business School

    Step 2: Apply for the Black Family Fellowship. Application will be available in December, 2018. Application deadline for Harvard Business School students is April 1, 2019.

    Applicants must submit:

    1. A biographical profile, not to exceed 150 words. (This profile should be short, concise and in the third person.) Please include the following highlights: an introductory sentence including your name; the degree you are pursuing at Busines School in addition to any joint degree at Harvard or concurrent degree program at another graduate or professional institution; where you are from and where you currently reside; an overview and highlights of your relevant work/professional experience; significant leadership achievements including awards or certifications; and educational credentials with the degrees earned and institutions attended.
       

    2. A document containing written responses to the following two eassy prompts: 1. Please provide a concrete example of your leadership in the past and discuss how you plan to bring your experience, education, and leadership capacity to bear to advance the common good. (750 words or less) 2. Please discuss your interest in the Black Family Fellowship and how your leadership goals have motivated you to apply. (200 words or less)

    Interviews

    Finalists for the Black Family Fellowship will be interviewed spring, 2019 by members of the Black Family Fellowship selection committee.

    Please visit our Fellowship FAQs page for more information.

    APPLICATION: HARVARD LAW SCHOOL

    Step 1: Apply to Harvard Law School.

    Step 2: Apply for the Black Family Fellowship. Application will be available in December, 2018. Application deadline for Harvard Law School students is March 15, 2019.

    Applicants must submit:

    1. A biographical profile, not to exceed 150 words. (This profile should be short, concise and in the third person.) Please include the following highlights: an introductory sentence including your name; the degree you are pursuing at Harvard Law School in addition to any joint degree at Harvard or concurrent degree program at another graduate or professional institution; where you are from and where you currently reside; an overview and highlights of your relevant work/professional experience; significant leadership achievements including awards or certifications; and educational credentials with the degrees earned and institutions attended.
       

    2. A document containing written responses to the following two eassy prompts: 1. Please provide a concrete example of your leadership in the past and discuss how you plan to bring your experience, education, and leadership capacity to bear to advance the common good. (750 words or less) 2. Please discuss your interest in the Black Family Fellowship and how your leadership goals have motivated you to apply. (200 words or less)

    Interviews

    Finalists for the Black Family Fellowship will be interviewed spring, 2019 by members of the Black Family Fellowship selection committee.

    Please visit our Fellowship FAQs page for more information.

    PROGRAM INFORMATION

    What We Offer

    The fellowship provides:

    • Black Family Fellows are awarded partial tuition support for graduate study at the Harvard Kennedy School, Harvard Business School, or Harvard Law School.
    • Applicants will be considered based on their potential to lead change for the common good. Black Family Fellows are outstanding emerging leaders who are veterans of the United States armed forces or active duty military students and have a strong moral compass and the capacity to work across the public, private, and nonprofit sectors. Special emphasis is placed on character development, and ethical leadership.
    • A comprehensive co-curricular leadership development program set within the Harvard ecosystem—a robust network of faculty, students, and opportunity.

    Eligibility

    The Black Family Fellowship is available to admitted degree program students at Harvard Kennedy School, Harvard Business School, and Harvard Law School who are veterans of the United States armed forces or active duty military students serving the United States. The fellowship will provide tuition support towards an MBA at Harvard Business School, JD at Harvard Law School, or master’s degree at the Harvard Kennedy School.

    • Master’s degree students at the Harvard Kennedy School should apply for the Black Family Fellowship through the Harvard Kennedy School financial aid portal.
    • Candidates from Harvard Business School and Harvard Law School should apply for the Fellowship through the Center for Public Leadership online application.
    • Candidates who are applying for the joint degree program through the Harvard Kennedy School with Harvard Law School or Harvard Business School should apply for the Black Family Fellowship through the Harvard Kennedy School financial aid portal.
    • The Black Family Fellowship at Harvard Kennedy School is awarded upon admission to the Harvard Kennedy School.
    • The Black Family Fellowship at Harvard Business School and Harvard Law School is available to both newly admitted and current MBA or JD candidates.

    The Fellowship Experience

    Fellows will participate in a proven, yearlong co-curricular program designed by Harvard Kennedy School’s Center for Public Leadership. This not-for-credit program is intended to inspire, provide concrete opportunities for leadership skill-building, and connect fellows with an interdisciplinary network of peers and mentors that will last a lifetime.

    The fellowship co-curricular program includes dinner seminars, an annual retreat, and robust field experiences grounded in discussions with visionary cross-sector leaders whose work has had significant impact in advancing interdisciplinary solutions to complex challenges. The program will also focus on strengthening core competencies central to public leadership. Delivered by expert faculty and practitioners, workshops and lectures will cover topics including promoting strong moral character and ethical decision making, mastering the art of negotiation, and leading effective teams and organizations among others.

    Black Family Fellows will participate in and help convene leadership discussions on bridging the “civilian-military divide” and support service activities such as Veteran’s Impact Day, having a transformational impact on the broader Harvard community.

    The co-curricular program also provides a hands-on leadership learning lab where fellows can workshop new ideas, problem-solve intractable challenges, and receive valuable feedback. Fellows play an active leadership role in driving programming that directly impacts their learning and that of their peers. When fellows graduate, they join the ranks of over 800 innovative and highly accomplished CPL alumni who are forging transformative change across sectors.

    Key Fellowship components include:

    • Fall Annual Retreat: CPL Fellows begin engaging one another and developing the network of fellows, faculty, and alumni that will support their aspirations as leaders.
    • Dream Trusts: Dream Trusts are a structured opportunity for fellows to receive counsel and support from a trusted and experienced group of peer advisors. Each fellow has at least one opportunity to present a leadership challenge to the group.
    • Leadership Discussion Series: On almost a weekly basis, fellows engage one another as well as eminent practitioners and local and national leaders on current challenges and opportunities for Latino leadership.
    • January Field Experience Trip: Fellows choose a city or small region to take a multi-day field experience. On this trip, they meet with local leaders in order to gain an understanding of society’s deep-rooted problems and innovative approaches to resolving them. Fellows plan, coordinate, and lead the field experience.
    • Connection with CPL and Alumni Network: Fellows engage with a diversity of emerging leaders from the U.S and other parts of the world through opportunities like roundtable discussions, mentoring experiences with fellowship alumni, leadership skills workshops, and networking events.

    Commitment to Nondiscrimination

    As a matter of commitment, policy, and law, Harvard Kennedy School does not discriminate on the basis of gender, gender identity, color, race, age, sexual orientation, religion, national or ethnic origin, political beliefs, intellectual focus, disability, or veteran status. The School strongly believes diversity enhances the value of all its activities, from research and teaching to degree programs and public events. The School encourages applications from candidates traditionally underrepresented in public service leadership positions and acknowledges a special responsibility to train leaders from groups underrepresented in public policy and management.

    The Debra and Leon Black Family Foundation is committed to achieving positive change across a wide array of disciplines. Since its creation in 1997, the Foundation has funded research and initiatives in medicine, the arts, and education.