City Hall Fellows is a nonprofit organization that aims to engage talented young people in the work of American cities and empower them to be effective local leaders and change agents through firsthand experience in city government. City Hall Fellows work for one year in a partner city selected by the program, where they are placed in a single city office working directly for a senior-level city official as a full-time staffer. Partner cities to date have included Baton Rouge, Louisiana; Houston, Texas; and San Francisco, California.
Fellows receive a stipend commensurate to the cost of living in their host city, plus health care. The compensation package is the same for all fellows regardless of their academic degrees, prior experience, or city work placement. Fellows will either have access to employer-sponsored health insurance or be provided an additional stipend to apply towards health insurance. Fellows also receive vacation days and are allowed one afternoon off each week to participate in a civic leadership development program arranged by the fellowship.
The program is designed for graduating seniors or recent graduates who have not yet begun a graduate program. Applicants do need to come from the host city, nor do they need to be U.S. citizens, but they will be expected to demonstrate a connection to their host city and be able to work in the U.S. full-time for a year after graduating. Applicants from all majors and all academic disciplines are welcome to apply.
Fellows are expected to possess the following characteristics: academic achievement, written and oral communication skills, leadership potential and ability, dedication to public service, and an entrepreneurial spirit appropriate for participating in a growing program. While there is no GPA cut-off, the program is highly competitive. Additionally, preference is given to applicants who can demonstrate a strong connection to the city for which they are applying.