Charles B. Rangel Graduate Fellowship Program Overview
Website: Rangel Program
he Rangel Graduate Fellowship is a program that aims to attract and prepare outstanding young people for careers in the Foreign Service of the U.S. Department of State in which they can help formulate, represent and implement U.S. foreign policy. The Rangel Program selects outstanding Rangel Fellows annually in a highly competitive nationwide process and supports them through two years of graduate study, internships, mentoring, and professional development activities. This program encourages the application of members of minority groups historically underrepresented in the Foreign Service, women, and those with financial need. Fellows who successfully complete the program and Foreign Service entry requirements will receive appointments as Foreign Service Officers, in accordance with applicable law and State Department policy.”
Rangel Fellows are committed to serving their country and promoting positive change globally. Individuals who have successfully completed the Rangel Program are now making a difference in countries throughout the world, including Colombia, Mexico, Panama, Venezuela, South Africa, Nigeria, Angola, China, Korea, Bangladesh, Spain and Ireland.
FELLOWSHIPS FOR GRADUATE STUDIES In 2021 the Rangel Program plans to award 30 fellowships of up to $37,500 annually for a two year period for tuition, room, board, books and mandatory fees for completion of two-year master’s degrees. This includes up to $21,500 per year for tuition and mandatory fees and an academic year stipend of $16,000. At the conclusion of two years of study, the Rangel Fellow is expected to have obtained a degree in international affairs or another area of relevance to the work of the Foreign Service (curriculum below) at a graduate school approved by the Rangel Program. Awardees are expected to maintain a cumulative GPA of at least 3.2 throughout their period of study.
ORIENTATION New Rangel Fellows will participate in an orientation at Howard University in mid-May, shortly after their selection. The purposes of this orientation are to familiarize the Fellows with all aspects of the fellowship and to enhance their understanding of, and skills for, Foreign Service careers.
TWO SUMMER INTERNSHIPS (CAPITOL HILL AND OVERSEAS AT U.S. EMBASSIES) Rangel Fellows will participate in two internships. The first, an internship working on international issues for Members of Congress in Washington, D.C., will occur in the summer after being selected and before the first year of graduate study. The second will be an overseas internship in a U. S. Embassy that takes place during the summer between the first and second years of graduate study.
MENTORING Each Fellow will receive mentoring from a Foreign Service Officer throughout the duration of the fellowship as well as during his/her early employment at the State Department.
CURRICULUM Fellows must obtain graduate degrees in international affairs or a related subject such as economics, history, political science, public administration, communications, public policy, business administration or foreign languages at a graduate or professional school approved by the Rangel Program. Studies in law do not satisfy this requirement. Applicants apply to two-year graduate programs at U.S. universities simultaneously with their application to the Rangel Program.
EMPLOYMENT/CONTRACTUAL OBLIGATIONS Fellows who successfully complete the Rangel Program and Foreign Service entry requirements will receive appointments as Foreign Service Officers. Fellows are required to obtain medical, security, and suitability clearances in order to remain in the program. Each Rangel Fellow who obtains a master's degree is committed to a minimum of five years of service as a Foreign Service Officer. Candidates who do not successfully complete the Rangel Program and the subsequent five year service obligation may be subject to a reimbursement obligation. Click here to learn more about the obligations that Rangel Fellows assume when they accept the fellowship.
Applicants must be U.S. citizens.
Applicants must be seeking admission to enter graduate school in the fall of 2021 for a two-year program at a U.S. university in an area of relevance to the Foreign Service. They can be in their senior year of their undergraduate studies, graduating by June 2021, or they can be college graduates.
Applicants must have a cumulative grade point average of 3.2 or higher on a 4.0 scale at the time of application.
- Us Citizen
A complete online application includes the following:
- Background Information (e.g., name, contact information, international travel).
- A personal statement (in 600 words or less) that discusses the applicants’ reasons for applying, interest in foreign affairs, commitment to pursue a Foreign Service career and any relevant experience or information.
- A statement (in 400 words or less) from the applicant that discusses his/her need for financial assistance to attend graduate school, including an explanation of:
- The financial assistance received during undergraduate studies
- Overall education-related debt
- Ability/plans to pay for graduate school independently
- Two letters of recommendation:
- One from a faculty member
- One from a community leader or other individual who can comment on the applicant’s non-academic accomplishments and his/her potential
- Note: In the online application, applicants will identify recommenders, who will be contacted by the program and asked to submit letters electronically. Below is a copy of the recommendation letter for your reference only.
- Proof of U.S. citizenship with a copy of: (choose one)
- Birth certificate
- Certificate of U.S. citizenship
- U.S. passport
- (Note: This should be uploaded in easy to ready PDF format.)
- ** Applicants are required to bring originals to the interview, if selected as a finalist.
- Student Aid Report (SAR) generated from the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form for the current school year.
- (Note: Applicants will upload this into the application using either Word of PDF format. Please remember that the SAR often takes several days to generate after you fill out the FAFSA.)
- GRE or GMAT Scores (copy of report sent to student) (Optional)
- (Note: Applicants will upload this into the application using either Word or PDF format. If an applicant has not yet taken the GRE or GMAT she/he can place “0” or “NA” in the score box and upload a document that stating their intent to take the test.)
- Official Financial Aid Statement from your senior year, if you received financial aid.
- (Note: Applicants will upload this into the application using either Word or PDF format. If you did not receive financial aid, you do not have to submit this.)
- Transcripts from all colleges and universities the applicant has attended for credit, including study abroad. Please upload university-generated transcripts. An official transcript would be best; a student copy is acceptable if it is in the format of an official transcript. If you are selected for an interview, you will have to bring an official transcript in a signed, sealed envelope, to the interview.
- (Note: Applicants will upload this into the application using either Word or PDF format.)
The Rangel Program is a collaborative effort between Howard University and the U.S. State Department that seeks to attract and prepare outstanding young people for careers as diplomats in the Foreign Service of the U.S. Department of State. The program seeks individuals interested in helping to shape a freer, more secure and prosperous world through formulating, representing, and implementing U.S. foreign policy. The Program encourages the application of members of minority groups historically underrepresented in the Foreign Service and those with financial need. There are two major components to the Rangel Program: an International Affairs Graduate Fellowship Program that provides support for graduate school, professional development, and entry into the U.S. Foreign Service, and an undergraduate International Affairs Summer Enrichment Program that provides undergraduates with the opportunity to enhance their skills, knowledge and understanding about U.S. foreign policy.
Becoming a Rangel Fellow means that you are committed to pursuing a two year master’s degree program in a field related to the Department of State’s Foreign Service, becoming a U.S. Department of State Foreign Service Officer and representing your country and its interests abroad and at home. Upon accepting the fellowship, you will sign a contract that clearly outlines your benefits and responsibilities as a Fellow. In addition to the rigorous academic requirements of being a Rangel Fellow, there are strict security, medical and suitability requirements which must be fulfilled and maintained to remain in the program. Additionally, there is a minimum five year service commitment. The five year service commitment begins upon entry into the Foreign Service. Failure to meet the contractual obligations, including obtaining and maintaining required medical, security and suitability clearances may result in your disqualification from the fellowship program and reimbursement to the U.S. Government of financial assistance paid in connection with your education.