Zuckerman Fellows Program

The Zuckerman Fellowship is for first-year students at Harvard Kennedy School, Harvard Graduate School of Education, or Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.

The challenges we face in our public schools and public health systems, as well as in government at all levels, are too complicated to be solved without the insight and commitment of leaders with the highest-quality professional training. But for many who have a strong aptitude for public service, the opportunity costs associated with acquiring the necessary training are too high.

In response to this problem, the Zuckerman Fellows Program equips people from the fields of medicine, law, and business to provide leadership for the common good by making it possible for them to pursue public service degrees at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health, or Harvard Kennedy School.

Zuckerman Fellows are selected on the basis of outstanding leadership ability with potential for significant impact to advance the public good, commitment to public service, and intellectual distinction and academic achievement.

Program Manager: Brandon Ward

The Center for Public Leadership acknowledges the generosity of Mort Zuckerman and the Zuckerman family for their support of the Zuckerman Fellows Program.

Armin Salek“This Fellowship proved to me that there are opportunities for cross-industry leaders. Not only did the CPL support my work at the intersection of law and education, it also connected me with brilliant and socially conscious business and health professionals. Those unique insights that I would otherwise lack have helped elevate my legal education idea into a successful and growing non-profit. I am leaving with a transformative Harvard education, mentors with decades of experience, and a network of talented peers to call on when challenges require expertise across practice areas."

- Armin Salek, 2020-2021 Zuckerman Fellow

Application

Step 1: Apply for admission to Harvard Kennedy School, Harvard Graduate School of Education, or Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. Please see respective school websites for deadline information.

Step 2: Apply for the Fellowship. Candidates for the Zuckerman Fellowship will be required to complete a fellowship application form and upload supplemental materials through the online portal, which is managed by the Harvard Committee on General Scholarships.

Fellowship applicants who are applying to more than one school must submit one fellowship application by the earlier of the two or three school deadlines. For example, if you are applying to HSPH and HKS, you will need to submit your application by January 5, to be considered at both schools. Please note all schools that you are applying to in your fellowship application.

The 2022-2023 application deadline has passed. Please check back in Fall 2022 for details on next year's process.

Program Information

WHAT WE OFFER
Zuckerman Fellows are selected on the basis of outstanding leadership ability with potential for significant impact to advance the public good, commitment to public service, and intellectual distinction and academic achievement. The fellowship provides:

  • Full tuition scholarship, health care fees, and a living stipend for one year as they pursue their master’s degree program at Harvard Kennedy School, Harvard Graduate School of Education or Harvard School of Public Health
  • A comprehensive co-curricular leadership development program set within the Harvard ecosystem—a robust network of faculty, students, and opportunity
  • Engagement with mentors and highly accomplished leaders who will enhance your ability to impact the communities you serve

THE AWARD
The Zuckerman Fellowship provides recipients with full tuition and health insurance fees for one year plus a living stipend.

The program’s value proposition extends, however, beyond financial support: fellows come together regularly—both as a cohort and with the broader pool of CPL fellows—for dinners, speakers, retreats, and other experiential learning opportunities, including a field experience trip to another city or region. This co-curricular program is designed to enrich the fellows’ academic experience, develop leadership skills, and build lasting ties that serve them beyond their years at Harvard.

The animating idea behind the Zuckerman Fellowship is crosspollination: the creativity that results from bringing perspectives of multiple professions and academic disciplines to bear on public sector problems. Zuckerman Fellows are selected on the basis of leadership abilities, intellectual and academic achievement, and a commitment to public service.

ELIGIBILITY
Candidates for the Zuckerman Fellows Program are individuals who have—or are pursuing—an M.B.A., J.D., M.D., or D.M.D./D.D.S. degree from an accredited U.S. institution and are seeking an additional master’s degree from Harvard Graduate School of Education, Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health, or Harvard Kennedy School:

  • Candidates must be citizens or permanent residents of the United States.
  • Candidates who have completed their M.B.A., J.D., M.D., or D.M.D./D.D.S. degree are eligible.
  • Candidates who are working on their M.B.A., J.D., M.D., or D.M.D./D.D.S. degree are eligible.
  • Candidates who are planning to enroll in joint or concurrent degree programs in these fields are eligible.
  • Fellows must be in their first year at the Graduate School of Education, the Harvard Kennedy School, or the School of Public Health during their fellowship year.
  • Fellows are required to be enrolled full time for the entire academic year at the Graduate School of Education, the Harvard Kennedy School, or the School of Public Health during their Fellowship year.  There are NO exceptions to this policy.
  • The fellowship application is separate from the candidate’s application for admission to the Graduate School of Education, the Harvard Kennedy School, or the Chan School of Public Health. Applications for admission must be submitted to the appropriate school according to the deadlines established at that school.  Fellows must be admitted to their programs at the Graduate School of Education, the Harvard Kennedy School, or the T.H. Chan School of Public Health in order to take up the Fellowship.
  • Zuckerman Fellowships may not be deferred except in exceptional circumstances.

THE FELLOWSHIP EXPERIENCE
While they are pursuing a master’s degree at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, or Harvard Kennedy School, Zuckerman Fellows also participate in an intensive leadership development program designed by the Harvard Kennedy School Center for Public Leadership including experiential learning opportunities; faculty and practitioner-led seminars on core leadership competencies; a renowned speaker series; and service opportunities to help fellows gain applied leadership skills, enrich their academic experience, and build lasting ties that help them become powerful forces for change.

Zuckerman Fellows also have opportunities to engage with the full community of 100+ CPL graduate fellows along with CPL’s community of more than 800 fellowship program alumni.

CONTACT
Questions about the application, guidelines, or eligibility requirements of the Zuckerman Fellowship should be directed to the Committee on General Scholarships at zuckermanfellows@harvard.edu

Questions about the Zuckerman Fellowship Co-Curricular Program should be directed to the Center for Public Leadership at cpl_fellowships@hks.harvard.edu.