Title Image

Applying To Be a Fellowship Host

Nonprofit organizations are vital partners in the success of the FAO Schwarz Fellowship Program. We work with leading organizations in Boston, New York and Philadelphia to design fellowship opportunities that build the capacity of our host organizations and prepare Fellows for leadership roles in the social impact sector.

The organizations we choose to host Fellowships are diverse (list here), but share some common features. They are successful nonprofits involved in direct service to their communities. They have a special commitment to young people and education, deliver measurable impact, are valued and respected in their cities, and can benefit from the Fellowship.  We’re particularly inspired by organizations that are addressing key societal issues related to inequity and social justice.

Please note: Application is by invitation only. If your organization is invited to apply, the Fellowship’s Executive Director will send a Request for Proposal. Applications from organizations that have not been invited will not be considered.


The RFP requires prospective hosts to offer a detailed description of the Fellow’s responsibilities at the host organization. We expect every Fellowship to have two distinct and equal components each representing 50 percent of the Fellow’s time: 1) a direct service role which engages the Fellow in delivering services to the youth served by the organization, and 2) a special project role that includes the Fellow’s participation in, design of, or management of a strategic inititiative that builds the organization’s reach or capacity. Special projects must not be exclusively focused in the area of fundraising/development. 

Examples of recent direct service work include:

  • Tutoring students during afterschool and summer programs
  • Working with students on environmental advocacy project to re-open contaminated beach through gathering data about water quality, developing and presenting data and vision for site to Town Board. 
  • Leading program sessions and serve as coach to students during classroom training and internships to empower them to reach their potential through careers and higher education
  • Delivering civics education presentations in public schools
  • Running community-based environmental programs for young people

Examples of recent special and strategic projects include:

  • Participating in the development and evaluation of a new program offering,
  • Designing and managing communications to support program initiatives
  • Planning advocacy and policy initiatives.
  • Playing lead role in developing social media strategy
  • Planning and organizing an annual day of service by forming partnerships with over schools, community organizations and corporate sponsors, and recruiting volunteers
  • Launching and managing alumni engagement to support students who completed academic support program


The Foundation’s review committee carefully reads the RFPs of all prospective hosts. Our evaluation criteria include:

  • The Fellow’s overall experience including onboarding, day-to-day supervision, and quality and balance of direct service and special project work
  • Fellow’s potential for personal and professional growth at the host organization
  • Key host organization characteristics, including a compelling mission and model, stable and talented leadership, financial stability, and strong evaluation results
  • Potential of direct service and special project work to build host organization capacity

After we make our selection, the Executive Director works with each host to finalize job descriptions and promote the Fellowship to qualified college seniors.

Host organizations will be expected to provide and implement a plan for recruiting, and to report regularly on their results. These efforts, in addition to the recruiting efforts undertaken by the Fellowship itself, combine to ensure that selected host organizations receive a diverse pool of highly qualified applicants for the Fellowship position.



Deadline applications from prospective hosts.

The Foundation selects hosts organizations for the next cohort.

The Foundation publicly announces the host organizations for the next cohort. Hosts are encouraged to make a similar announcement.

Host organizations recruit prospective Fellows through their own networks and channels.

Fellow applications close.

Host organizations screen and review applicants and interview candidates, selecting semi-finalists and finalists for the Fellowship.

Hosts onboard new Fellows.