Fellowship Program

Fellowship Program
Program

Cultivating Emerging Professionals

The Duke Endowment’s one-year Fellowship program provides hands-on experience in the philanthropic sector.

Fellows develop their skills while completing a significant project and contributing in a meaningful way to the nonprofit sector. Working alongside a project lead and meeting regularly with the Fellowship supervisor, the Fellow will receive mentoring, coaching and professional development.

The Duke Endowment is committed to building a culture of learning and continuous improvement, and as a valued member of the team the Fellow will join staff in educational training opportunities throughout the year.

2020-21 Project Description

The Duke Endowment’s Fellow will advance two significant projects.

The first project will focus on the Endowment’s summer literacy initiative. Launched in 2012 to help rural churches provide a summer-learning intervention, the program is showing promising results in helping early readers avoid learning loss over the school break. Long-term plans include conducting a rigorous impact evaluation and potentially replicating the model to help struggling readers in rural areas across the state.

Building on this momentum, the Fellow will continue evaluation efforts as our primary connection to the summer literacy sites. Visits to the rural communities will be expected. The Fellow will work with the Endowment’s Rural Church and Evaluation teams, along with outside consultants, to complete reports; prepare and conduct sharing sessions with grantees; and organize and lead the 2021 summer literacy planning retreats. The role offers opportunities for contributing to systems change.

For the second project, the Fellow will work with Endowment staff to analyze 2020 U.S. Census data pertaining to rural North Carolina communities. The Endowment supports rural United Methodist churches as catalysts of change in their communities and we will use this Census information to help determine if a congregation is eligible for our funding. The role offers opportunities to work collaboratively and build research and data analytics skills.

How to Apply

To apply, contact the career development center at your school:

Key Dates

Applicants should note the following key dates:

  • February 9 at midnight: Application closes
  • February 28 (make-up date March 4): Phone interviews
  • March 16 (make-up date March 18): Zoom interviews
  • Early April: Notifications
  • June 8, 2020: Start date
  • June 2021: End date

Commitment & Compensation

  • One year, full-time (minimum 35 hours per week), beginning June 8, 2020, through June 2021.
  • Moderate travel is required
  • Salary is $45,000, plus paid vacation
  • Benefits include life, medical and dental insurance and participation in the Endowment’s 401(k) plan

Project Knowledge and Skills

Strong interpersonal skills

Ability to listen and synthesize information

Good writing skills

Ability to research public resources, integrate and analyze data

Ability to meet deadlines and take initiative to pursue work, assist others and resolve issues

General Eligibility

Applicants must have a bachelor’s degree from one of The Duke Endowment’s four beneficiary schools:

  • Davidson College
  • Duke University
  • Furman University
  • Johnson C. Smith University

Demonstrated interest and experience in the social sector and nonprofit work.

Learning and Development

The Fellow will have opportunities to increase awareness and skills in:

  • Nonprofits and philanthropy
    • Issues challenging the Carolinas
    • Better understanding of under-resourced populations in the Carolinas
    • A foundation’s role in philanthropy
    • A nonprofit’s/grantee’s role in a community
    • The grantmaking process
  • Communication and interpersonal skills
    • Communicating with various audiences
    • Giving and receiving constructive and timely feedback
  • Leadership skills
    • Executing a project
    • Collaborating across The Duke Endowment and with partners in the field
  • Using data and evidence to inform decisions
    • Applying evaluative thinking
    • Learning and continuous improvement

Fellowship Contacts

Jeri F. Krentz, Fellowship supervisor, ​jkrentz@tde.org, 704.927.2260

Brittany S. Worden, Fellow, ​Bworden@tde.org, 704-927-2265

Fellows

FAQs

Learn More About the Fellowship

The Duke Endowment’s one-year Fellowship program provides hands-on experience in the philanthropic sector.

Fellows develop their skills while completing a significant project and contributing in a meaningful way to the nonprofit sector. Working alongside a project lead and meeting regularly with the Fellowship supervisor, the Fellow will receive mentoring, coaching and professional development.

What is the project for 2020-21?

Working from June 2020 through June 2021, The Duke Endowment’s Fellow will advance two significant projects.

The first project will focus on the Endowment’s summer literacy initiative. Launched in 2012 to help rural churches provide a summer-learning intervention, the program is showing promising results in helping early readers avoid learning loss over the school break. Long-term plans include conducting a rigorous impact evaluation and potentially replicating the model to help struggling readers in rural areas across the state.

Building on this momentum, the Fellow will continue evaluation efforts as our primary connection to the summer literacy sites. Visits to the rural communities will be expected. The Fellow will work with the Endowment’s Rural Church and Evaluation teams, along with outside consultants, to complete reports; prepare and conduct sharing sessions with grantees; and organize and lead the 2021 summer literacy planning retreats. The role offers opportunities for contributing to systems change.

For the second project, the Fellow will work with Endowment staff to analyze 2020 U.S. Census data pertaining to rural North Carolina communities. The Endowment supports rural United Methodist churches as catalysts of change in their communities and we will use this Census information to help determine if a congregation is eligible for our funding. The role offers opportunities to work collaboratively and build research and data analytics skills.

What is the commitment and compensation?

  • One year, full-time (minimum 35 hours per week), beginning June 8, 2020, through June 2021.
  • Moderate travel is required
  • Salary is $45,000, plus paid vacation
  • Benefits include life, medical and dental insurance and participation in the Endowment’s 401(k) plan

What skills are important for applicants?

  • Strong interpersonal skills
  • Ability to listen and synthesize information
  • Good writing skills
  • Ability to research public resources, integrate and analyze data
  • Ability to meet deadlines and take initiative to pursue work, assist others and resolve issues

Can you explain the eligibility requirements?

When our founder established his private foundation in 1924, he included four schools of higher education – Davidson College, Duke University, Furman University and Johnson C. Smith University – as his beneficiaries.

Applicants for the Endowment’s Fellowship must have a bachelor’s degree from one of those named schools, along with demonstrated interest and experience in the social sector and nonprofit work.

Will the Endowment provide opportunities for learning and development?

The Duke Endowment is committed to building a culture of learning and continuous improvement, and as a valued member of the team the Fellow will join staff in educational training opportunities throughout the year.

The Fellow will have opportunities to increase awareness and skills in:

  • Nonprofits and philanthropy
    • Issues challenging the Carolinas
    • Better understanding of under-resourced populations in the Carolinas
    • A foundation’s role in philanthropy
    • A nonprofit’s/grantee’s role in a community
    • The grantmaking process
  • Communication and interpersonal skills
    • Communicating with various audiences
    • Giving and receiving constructive and timely feedback
  • Leadership skills
    • Executing a project
    • Collaborating across The Duke Endowment and with partners in the field
  • Using data and evidence to inform decisions
    • Applying evaluative thinking
    • Learning and continuous improvement

How do I apply?

Applicants for the Endowment’s Fellowship must have a bachelor’s degree from Davidson College, Duke University, Furman University and Johnson C. Smith University, along with demonstrated interest and experience in the social sector and nonprofit work.

To apply, contact the career development center at your school:

When is the application deadline?

Feb. 9, 2020, at midnight.

Are there other key dates?

  • February 28 (make-up date March 4): Phone interviews
  • March 16 (make-up date March 18): Zoom interviews
  • Early April: Notifications
  • June 8: Start date
  • June 2021: End date

Is the Endowment’s Fellowship program new?

The Endowment began its Fellowship program in 2005. Fellows spent six months in each of our four program areas to experience the grantmaking cycle from beginning to end. From its beginning, the program brought in talented and committed people who went on to do amazing work in their chosen fields. As we helped them learn and develop, we, in turn, learned a great deal from them.

In 2018, in the spirit of learning and continuous improvement that’s so important to our work, we conducted an internal evaluation to assess the Fellowship’s impact. We surveyed staff members, along with all current and past Fellows, and conducted interviews with a subset of those groups.

Just as we had hoped, the evaluation helped us learn about the program’s strengths and challenges and uncover potential adjustments. Staff and Fellows agreed that the program benefitted participants, but were less clear about its purpose and the expected tasks and responsibilities of Fellows.

So instead of hiring a Fellow for 2019-21, we pressed pause. Armed with data from the evaluation, staff members from our grantmaking areas, communications, finance, evaluation and human resources came together to fine-tune the program and make it as effective as possible.

What are the main differences?

The program will now be:

  • One year long, from June to June, instead of two years.
  • Project-based. Fellows will be hired to work on a significant project that the Endowment needs help with.
  • Focused on talented candidates who have a bachelor’s degree, but not necessarily an advanced degree or extensive work experience.

What hasn’t changed?

Our aim – to give emerging leaders exposure to the philanthropic landscape and help them develop skills while contributing to the Endowment’s mission – stays the same. The Endowment is committed to this dynamic program and excited about giving it new life. Most of all, we’re eager to welcome future Fellows to our work.