Post-Undergraduate Fellows Opportunity

Carnegie Endowment for International Peace Junior Fellows Program 2016-2017

  • Applications must be received by Friday, December 11, 2015.
  • Duke's Department of Political Science reviews all student applications.
  • All applications MUST be submitted to Suzanne Pierce ( DO NOT submit directly to the Carnegie Endowment. Please contact Suzanne Pierce if you have any additional questions about the application process.

The Program

Carnegie Endowment for International Peace is a unique global network of policy research centers in Russia, China, Europe, the Middle East and the United States. Our mission, dating back more than a century, is to advance the cause of peace through analysis and development of fresh policy ideas and direct engagement and collaboration with decision-makers in government, business and civil society. Working together, our centers bring the inestimable benefit of multiple national viewpoints to bilateral, regional and global issues.

The Junior Fellows Program at the Carnegie Endowment is designed to provide a substantive work experience for students who have a serious career interest in the area of international affairs. Approximately 10-12 students will be hired to work at the Carnegie Endowment in Washington, DC on a full-time basis for a period of one year.


Junior Fellows provide research assistance to scholars working on Carnegie Endowment's projects: nuclear policy, democracy building, energy and climate issues, Middle East studies, Asia politics and economics, South Asian politics, Southeast Asian politics, Japan studies, and Russian and Eurasian affairs. Junior Fellows have the opportunity to conduct research, participate in meetings with high-level officials, contribute to congressional testimony and organize briefings attended by scholars, activists, journalists and government officials.


Applicants must be nominated by an official of their university or institution who has been designated for this purpose (usually the career placement officer, fellowship advisor or an academic department chairperson). A listing of participating institutions and nominating officials may be found at Applications are accepted only from graduating college seniors or individuals who have graduated within the past academic year. No one will be considered who has started graduate studies (except those who have recently completed a joint bachelor’s/master’s degree program). Applicants should have completed a significant amount of course work related to their discipline of interest. Language and other skills may also be required for certain assignments. The selection process for the Junior Fellows Program is very competitive. Accordingly, applicants should be of high academic quality.

Applications Process

Applicants should consult their designated nominating official concerning nominations, since no university may nominate more than two students each year. Finalists in the selection process will be interviewed by video in the spring. Selection decisions are generally made in mid-March and no later than March 31.


All fellowships begin on August 1, 2016. Junior Fellows are hired for a period of approximately one year.

Salary and Housing

The monthly salary is $3,166.66 (equivalent to $38,000 annually) subject to federal, state and local taxes. A generous benefits package is provided, including medical, dental and life insurance as well as vacation leave. Junior Fellows are responsible for their own housing arrangements.


All of the following must be received via the designated nominating official no later than December 11, 2015:

  • Application form.
  • Essay (one page or less, double-spaced) on why the student would like to become a junior fellow.
  • 1-2 page resume.
  • Two recommendations. These recommendations can come from anyone the student feels can best speak to their abilities as a potential Junior Fellow.
  • Transcript of undergraduate records. The transcript may be unofficial.
  • An essay of no more than three (3) typewritten, double-spaced pages on one of the following topics. These topics are intended to test skills in analysis, logic, and written expression. The essays should be thought pieces, not research papers. Students should submit an essay related to their primary research program interests, although the Carnegie Endowment may ultimately select an applicant for a program outside of his/her designated primary interest or make an assignment to more than one program.

Applicants must respond to the question pertaining to the program to which they are applying.

A. Democracy and Rule of Law Program. There is an intense and ever-growing debate within and among many countries over whether it is legitimate for outside actors (governmental as well as nongovernmental actors) to fund civil society organizations within a country. Set forward and elaborate what you believe are the strongest arguments in favor of and opposed to the view that foreign funding for civil society is legitimate. Be sure to consider different types of civil society activities and organizations that might receive such funding.

B. Nuclear Policy Program.  Which state without nuclear weapons do you believe is at most risk of acquiring them?

C. Energy & Climate Program. The global oil sector is undergoing a paradigm shift. This is being driven by lower global oil prices, technological breakthroughs, political instability in the Middle East, Russia and beyond, shifting oil demands in Asia, lack of ready substitutes for petroleum products, and mounting climate concerns. What relevant tools do policymakers have at their disposal to reduce the geopolitical, environmental and economic risks associated with oil?

D. Middle East Program. The Middle East region is going through a huge, agonizing and protracted transformation characterized by failing governance structures, rising extremism and sectarianism, weak institutions, high unemployment, poor education and the return of status quo forces resistant to reform and inclusion. The current situation has enabled non-state actors such as the Islamic State to emerge and spread a new toxic ideology of hate and violence. What do you see as one of the most difficult threats facing the region today? Discuss the impact this has had on two countries in the region and strategies that will help move these countries toward a better future.

E. South Asia Program. Why does India’s success matter to the United States?

F. China Studies (Asia Program). The history of the interaction between a rising power and an existing great power suggests that the changes are high of a war occuring between the two. Does history in fact suggest that China, as a rising power, and the United States, as an existing great power, will more likely go to war than not? Use both references to history and the SIno-U.S. situation to support your argument.

G. Japan Studies (Asia Program). Prime Minister Abe’s government has pursued a variety of reforms to its defense and security policies, including revising the National Defense Program Guidelines, creating a new structure for the National Security Council, developing a National Security Strategy, reinterpreting its ability to exercise the right of collective self-defense, and passing new legislation to reflect these changes. What are the key political and strategic drivers behind this push, what are the moderating factors, and what is important for U.S. policy makers to understand as theyconsider how to respond/react (balancing national security needs with regional foreign policy priorities)?

H. Southeast Asia Studies (Asia Program). East Asia is now experiencing a slowdown in economic growth.  Is this likely to persist and what are the policy implications?

I. Economics (Asia Program).  East Asia is now experiencing a slowdown in economic growth.  Is this likely to persist and what are teh policy implications? (same as above)

J. Russia/Eurasia Program.  What does Russian intervention in Syria tell you about Russia as a rising or a declining power?

For questions about the Junior Fellow Program see Frequently Asked Questions. You can print out an Application for the 2016-2017 program.

Career Resources

Your initial search should begin with the Duke Career Center. This office offers multiple resources for all types of career opportunities.

Graduate or Professional Schools

Masters or Ph.D. Degree in Political Science

Please contact the Director of Undergraduate Studies and your faculty advisor for guidance on pursuing an advanced degree in political science.

Public Administration/Public Affairs

American Society for Public Administration
Association of Professional Schools of International Affairs

Law School

Duke Pre-Law Center
Law School Admission Council
National Association for Law Placement

Business School

Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business
Duke University Fuqua Business School

Career Websites

U.S. Office of Personnel Management
Careers in Public Service
U.S. Department of Homeland Security
Teach for America
NGO Global Network
World Peace and World Health Organizations
Peace Corp
American Political Science Association


Duke University Office of Undergraduate Scholars and Fellows
American Political Science Association
Michigan State University Libraries Database
Minority Fellowship Database
National Association of Fellowship Advisors