The following questions are those most commonly asked by applicants:
- I will graduate in May of 2013. Am I eligible for the fellowship?
No, applicants must be returning to campus in 2013-14 to continue their degree-seeking coursework.
- I will graduate in December of 2013. Am I eligible for the fellowship?
No. All fellows must be a student on campus for the full subsequent academic year.
- I am a student at the Harvard Extension School. Am I eligible for the fellowship?
Yes, as long as you are enrolled in a degree program.
- I applied for the fellowship last year but was not selected. Can I apply again?
Yes. Your 2012-13 application will only be considered within the context of this year’s applicant pool.
Public Service Opportunities
- Can I receive the fellowship to pursue a public service opportunity outside of the US?
No, only public service opportunities taking place within the US are eligible for the fellowship.
- Can I receive the fellowship to pursue an internationally-focused public service opportunity within the US?
- I would like to conduct research related to my thesis on a public service topic. Can I receive the fellowship for this research?
No, research on public service topics will not qualify for the fellowship.
- I’m considering working for a political campaign. Does that qualify for funding?
No. While working in the office of an elected official qualifies, working on a campaign does not.
- I am a current student at HLS. Can I apply for funding for opportunities not funded by Summer Public Interest Fund (SPIF)?
No. Presidential Public Service Fellowship and SPIF guidelines are aligned to create a consistent application process.
- What if I haven’t secured a public service opportunity by the March 30, 2012 deadline?
The selection committee will make a tentative decision on your application if a sponsorship letter is not received by April 5, 2013. After April 5, the committee will no longer be able to consider applicants who have not secured sponsorship.
- My public service opportunity is unpaid. Will the fellowship cover an appropriate level of earnings for the summer?
Yes. Both travel and living expenses and summer income are eligible expenses, though ordinarily award amounts will not exceed $5,000 for undergraduates and $8,000 for graduate students.
- I receive financial aid from Harvard and my package requires me to contribute some of my summer earnings to my academic year costs. Will the fellowship cover this expectation?
In some cases the fellowship may be able to cover the summer earnings expectation in addition to other expenses and summer income.
- I followed the application instructions and pressed submit, but nothing happened. What do I do now?
First, please ensure you are using a supported browser (IE 7+, Firefox 3.6+, Sarari 4.0+ and Google Chrome). Other common errors include the following – please scroll to the application page top or bottom to view the error messages:
- Missing required fields (note that the last field ‘initials’ is required)
- Files need to be 2MB or smaller, and we only accept .doc, .docx, .xls, .xlsx, .txt, .pdf and image files
- Files with non-matching extension (for example a .zip file was saved as .txt)
- How can I be certain that my application was submitted successfully?
After your application is submitted successfully, you will see the following confirmation message displayed inside a yellow box: “Your application has been submitted successfully. Thank you.”
- It’s getting close to the application deadline and I don’t think my recommendations have been submitted. What should I do?
It is the applicant’s responsibility to ensure that all components of the application are submitted by the February 22 deadline, including the recommendations. You should inform your recommender of this deadline. If your recommender cannot submit on time, you may wish to consider a different recommender.
- What makes a transcript unofficial?
Only a Harvard Registrar’s office can create an official transcript. All other transcripts (e.g. printed from a My.Harvard account, photocopy of an official transcript) are considered unofficial.