Eligible Indonesian YSEALI members can apply for the 2022 YSEALI Professional Fellow online from October 1st, 2021, until November 15th, 2021!
The Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative Professional Fellows Program (YSEALI PFP) is a two-way exchange program designed to promote mutual understanding, enhance leadership and professional skills, and build lasting and sustainable partnerships between emerging leaders in Southeast Asia and the United States. YSEALI PFP provides emerging leaders with the opportunity to gain first-hand experiences in, and exposure to, U.S. public and private sector offices working on a variety of issues related to the four themes of civic engagement, economic empowerment, governance and society, and sustainable development and the environment. YSEALI PFP is open to professionals aged 25-35 from any of the eleven YSEALI countries.
YSEALI PFP will be administered as a hybrid program, which includes virtual activities and a tentative in-person U.S.-based exchange. Applicants must have reliable internet connectivity to participate in the virtual activities.
Applicants may participate in one of the two program cycles:
- Cycle 1:
Virtual activities will launch in February 2022, with approximately one live session per month throughout the duration of the program. Some professional asynchronous activities may accompany each live session. The U.S.-based exchange is tentatively scheduled from June 13 –July 22, 2022 (pending travel restrictions).
- Cycle 2:
Virtual activities will launch in May 2022, with approximately one live session per month throughout the duration of the program. Some professional asynchronous activities may accompany each live session. The U.S.-based exchange is tentatively scheduled from September12 – October 21, 2022 (pending travel restrictions).
How will the program benefit you?
Each selected YSEALI Fellow will:
- Partake in virtual leadership and professional development activities throughout the program.
- Be matched with a four-week, full-time fellowship placement host in a U.S. organization focused on issues relating to the Fellow’s work at home.
- Gain first-hand knowledge about US institutions and build relationships with American counterparts.
- Receive comprehensive on-program support. Travel and living arrangements will be covered as well as emergency health benefit on program.
- Become part of a prestigious alumni network with access to valuable resources and an international network of like-minded professionals.
To apply, you must:
- YSEALI members from all 10 ASEAN countries and Timor-Leste who are leading change and innovation in civil society, the public sector, or the private sector. Joining YSEALI is free! Sign up here
- Be a mid-level professional, 25-35 years old
- Be a citizen and current resident of: Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Timor-Leste, or Vietnam
- Demonstrate proficiency in written and oral English
- Have at least two years relevant work experience and be currently employed
- Have demonstrated leadership and collaborative skills
YSEALI PFP is administered under four Institute Themes: Civic Engagement, Economic Empowerment, Governance and Society, and Sustainable Development and the Environment. Applicants will be instructed to rank themes in order of preference on their application as well as their preferred program cycle. Applications may be assigned to a different theme or cycle if deemed necessary and appropriate.
- Civic Engagement
The Civic Engagement Institutes will support professionals involved in non-governmental management; community development; advocacy; education and capacity building; media and journalism; law; health equity; youth initiatives and programs; and civic activism for marginalized populations.Topics related to these Institutes might include NGO management; staff training and development; volunteer management; conducting effective community outreach and public relations; creating strategic partnerships and coalition building; conflict resolution and tolerance; social justice; and education and advocacy programs.
- Economic Empowerment
The Economic Empowerment Institutes will support professionals involved in small and medium-sized business development; business administration; business education; economic development policy; social entrepreneurship; and community training programs.Topics related to these Institutes might include entrepreneurship; community-based training programs; global competency and employment readiness; the role of government in promoting economic growth; sustainable economic development; and the economic empowerment of women, youth, minorities, persons with disabilities, and marginalized populations.
- Governance and Society
The Governance and Society Institutes will support professionals involved in: the legislative process; governance at the local or national level; public administration and management; policy making; fiscal management; political campaigns and initiatives; health and human services; public-private partnerships; public safety; transportation and urban planning; and law and judicial reform.Topics related to these Institutes might include rule of law; access to justice; civil liberties; fiscal management; anti-corruption; outreach and representation; and transparency and accountability.
- Sustainable Development and the Environment
The Sustainable Development and the Environment Institutes will support professionals involved in food and water security; public health; ecotourism; the innovative development and management of agricultural and food systems, energy, housing, and transportation resources; natural disaster response; natural resource conservation and restoration; and waste management.Topics related to these Institutes might include grassroots activism; environmental policy and regulations; research and sustainable development; planning and forecasting; sustainable systems; corporate social responsibility; and market-oriented initiatives.
How to apply?
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the YSEALI Professional Fellows Program?
The Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative Professional Fellows Program (YSEALI PFP) is a professional development exchange program for the best and brightest community leaders from Southeast Asia, working in the fields of civic engagement, NGO management, economic empowerment, governance, legislative process, environmental and natural resources management. The YSEALI PFP provides participants a month-long fellowship at U.S.-based companies, non-profit organizations, institutions, and government offices. Fellows will work with community leaders to enhance their practical expertise, leadership skills, and professional contacts to address issues in their home communities.
How is COVID-19 impacting YSEALI PFP?
In response to the ongoing global pandemic, YSEALI PFP will be offered as a hybrid program with virtual activities leading up to a U.S.-based exchange. Please note, the in-person, U.S.-based Institute is contingent upon favorable travel conditions. In the event there are travel restrictions, or other factors which could adversely impact the health, safety and welfare of program participants and hosts, YSEALI PFP will pivot the in-person, U.S.-based exchange to virtual programming.
Do I need to pay for the program? What are the costs?
If selected as a finalist, the U.S. Department of State will cover costs associated with your international travel, visa, and living costs in the U.S. There are no required costs to Fellows.
How do I apply?
Apply online at www.ysealipfp.org.
How are Fellows selected?
Fellows are selected through a competitive nationwide search that involves a merit-based selection process. This includes an extensive written application and in-person interview. The selection of finalists is determined in collaboration with the U.S. Department of State.
How will I get a U.S. visa?
American Councils will assist Fellows in applying for a J-1 visa. All visa fees will be covered through the program as well as travel costs to attend the visa interview. Fellows must be granted a J-1 visa by the consular section at the U.S. Embassy in order to be eligible to participate in YSEALI PFP. Failure to obtain a J-1 visa will result in termination from the program. American Councils will assist Fellows in the application process but holds no sway over visa granting decisions made by the U.S. Embassy.
Where will I live?
YSEALI Fellows are housed in U.S. host families, university housing, extended stay hotels, or some combination of these options. At minimum, all Fellows will be provided a home hospitality experience such as dinner with an American family, a cultural excursion, short-term homestay, or other relevant activity to encourage cultural exchange.
How will my fellowship placement be assigned?
Fellows will be placed in a non-profit, public, or private sector organization in the United States for the duration of the fellowship placement using information provided in your application, interview, and other materials.
What will I do at my fellowship placement?
While at your U.S. fellowship placement, you will engage in a wide range of activities which may include shadowing important meetings, conducting research, presenting on relevant topics, participating in office events, joining projects, and many other activities. YSEALI PFP is a Fellow-driven experience. Fellows who are most successful set goals and objectives for the program in advance of their arrival and proactively share them with their U.S. placement host, along with information about their background and experiences at home.
What happens after the program?
Upon completion of the program, Fellows are considered YSEALI PFP alumni and are eligible for further alumni programming and opportunities through the alumni network. The post-U.S. components are as important to the YSEALI PFP as the U.S.-based components. This includes implementation of follow-on Action Plans to address challenges encountered in Fellows’ home communities. Select Fellows may receive funding to implement their Action Plan or invite a U.S. placement host from their fellowship placement to implement a Reciprocal Exchange Project in the Fellow’s country. Additionally, YSEALI PFP alumni will be eligible to participate in Regional Alumni Accelerator Workshops.