Brief Description about Obama Foundation
Applications for the Obama Foundation Scholars Program are now open! You can apply for the Columbia University Scholars Program.
The Program seeks to support dynamic, collaborative, rising leaders from around the world in an innovative one-year academic experience.
The Obama Foundation Scholars Program will give rising young leaders around the world who are already making a difference in their communities the opportunity to take their work to the next level through a newly designed curriculum that brings together academic, skills-based, and hands-on learning. The Scholars Program empowers individuals with a proven commitment to service with the tools they need to make their efforts more effective, to identify innovative solutions to complex global problems, and promote change through values-based leadership.
he program will build lasting relationships among emerging leaders who are committed to working together to solve the most pressing challenges of our time, creating a global network that reaches across issues and borders. After completing the program, Obama Foundation Scholars will return to their communities and continue the important work they started in the program by implementing their own personalized action plan. They will also have an opportunity to play a role in the Obama Foundation’s efforts to inspire, train, and connect rising leaders from around the globe.
Eligibility for Obama Foundation
The Obama Foundation Scholars Program at Columbia University seeks rising leaders from around the world who meet the following criteria:
- Have a proven commitment to service and leadership within a community, region or country outside the United States, coupled with a demonstrated commitment to return to these communities following their completion of the program and apply their enhanced training, skills and connections on a long-term basis for the benefit of these communities
- Are emerging leaders who have made meaningful contributions to their field and are now at a “tipping point” in their careers
- Are fluent in English (verbal, written and spoken)
- Have the ability and inclination to positively shape the future of their community
- Have a demonstrated commitment to humility, integrity, inclusivity, stewardship, fearlessness, imagination and teamwork
Eligible Regions: Open for All
- Apply online through the Apply Now link.
- A complete application, submitted entirely online, includes the following materials
- Complete online application form (Check the Apply Now link for the form)
- Resume/curriculum vitae:
The resume/curriculum vitae should be a chronological listing of your employment and academic history, and other significant activities, including any awards, publications, or other achievements․
- Personal video statement:
The personal video statement should be a short video (no longer than five minutes in length) introducing the applicant and their work to the selection committee. Applicants will upload their video statement to a video hosting service, like YouTube or Vimeo, and will include a link to their video in the online application. Additional information on the requirements for the personal video statement can be found in the online application.
- Responses to short essay questions:
The short essay questions help the selection committee understand the applicant’s work, their motivation and how the program fits into their career trajectory. Applicants will submit their essay questions in the online application.
- Proof of English proficiency:
Applicants whose native language is not English are required to demonstrate proficiency in the English language by submitting scores from one of three exams: The internet-based or paper-based exams of the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL); the International English Language Testing System (IELTS); or the Pearson Test of English Academic (PTE Academic). No other exams will be accepted.
This requirement is waived for applicants who:
- have completed an undergraduate degree – not a master’s or graduate degree – in a country where English is an official language;
OR,have previously taken the TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE exams in the last five years and scored at or above the minimum requirement of 100 (TOEFL-IBT), 600 (TOEFL-PBT), 7.0 (IELTS), or 68 (PTE Academic). If applicants qualify for a waiver under this exception, they must upload a scanned copy of their score report to the online application to ensure their application is eligible for review. If they did not score at or above the required minimum or no longer have a copy of their old results, they must retake an English proficiency exam.
- Minimum Scores
|TOEFL – Internet-Based Exam||100|
|TOEFL – Paper-Based Exam||600|
|International English Language Testing System||7|
|Pearson Test of English Academic||68|
Please note that while applicants who received scores below the posted minimums may still apply, applications are not guaranteed to be reviewed.
- Three letters of recommendation:
Three letters of recommendation are required from individuals who are familiar with the applicant and the applicant’s work in an academic, professional or community service setting. Recommendations should directly address the applicant’s suitability for admission to the Obama Foundation Scholars Program. Recommendations should not be written by family members or friends.