The Fellowship Program
El Pomar’s Fellowship experience develops high-achieving, service-minded, recent college graduates and early career professionals into dynamic community leaders primed to make an impact across multiple sectors.
The Fellowship Experience
The two-year Fellowship program allows Fellows to obtain valuable learning opportunities through direct exposure to Colorado’s philanthropic and nonprofit arenas, targeted professional development, peer management, program oversight and connection with an engaged network of nearly 300 alumni.
Fellows focus 80% of their time on programmatic work and 20% of their time on professional development. As program directors and associates, Fellows oversee and execute the work of El Pomar’s leadership development, community stewardship and administrative programs. Each Fellow serves on multiple programs which require them to use and develop a core set of skills including: project management; nonprofit support; business writing; grant making support; event planning; communications; research and more. Professional development opportunities include: public speaking trainings; investment and finance classes; Excel, PowerPoint and project management certification; leadership assessments and individual coaching sessions. A key aspect of the Fellowship is the cohort model, which allows each class of Fellows to learn, grow and develop as a community of young professionals.
The First Year
During a fast paced first year, Fellows focus their time building practical project and program management skills while at the same time exploring various leadership frameworks. The supportive environment of the Foundation combined with guidance from 2nd Year Fellows and Foundation staff creates an accelerated and impactful learning experience. Opportunities to grow their professional network, interact with community leaders from all sectors, and collaborate with Regional Council members and Trustees serving El Pomar’s eleven regions are some of the highlights of an El Pomar Fellow’s first year at the Foundation. Some of the competencies Fellows develop and practice in their first year include:
Difference, Diversity and Inclusion
The Second Year
In their second year, Fellows apply their skills and self-understanding as directors of the Foundation’s regional activities and various programs. Through this, 2nd Year Fellows have increased responsibility supervising and delegating work to 1st Years, leading them to develop their ability to coach and mentor others. Professional development sessions, career transition services and mentoring from a broad alumni network are key aspects of the 2nd Year experience. Many Fellows secure an externship in their last quarter which provides a springboard into future career paths, jobs and post-secondary education opportunities. In the second year, Fellows build on the competencies learned in the first year and add the following:
Coaching and Development
Giving and Receiving Feedback
Schedule an Informational Interview
The Fellowship Recruiting team would be happy to schedule a time to answer questions about the program; we can host these conversations either virtually or at our Penrose House offices in Colorado Springs. These informational sessions are not required for the application process, but are helpful for the applicant to gain a deeper understanding of the Fellowship.
Meet the Current Fellows
Who Should Apply?
- Recent college graduates or young professionals
- Ability to work in a dynamic environment
- Well-developed organizational, analytical and problem-solving skills
- Desire to accelerate personal and professional development and engage in a diverse cohort of young professionals
- Demonstrates commitment to serving the people and state of Colorado and a passion for community service
- Application opens: October 12, 2022
- Application closes: January 10, 2023
- Interviews are held in February
- Offers are extended in early March
- The Fellowship begins in mid-July
Fellowship Alumni Network
The Fellowship alumni network includes nearly 300 leaders in the public, private and nonprofit sectors in Colorado and across the country. Alumni remain connected throughout their careers, and support current Fellows through professional mentorship.
What Alumni are Saying:
“The Fellowship changes lives. The relationships, the personal drive that I gained and the opportunity to start thinking about my personal vision certainly changed my life for the better.”
Erik, Class of 2002
“The Fellowship empowered me to make a difference, continually focus on my development and leverage the power of a strong network. Gaining the skills and confidence to lead during the Fellowship set the foundation for my entire career to date.”
Lindsey, Class of 2007
“The Fellowship takes talented people and provides the opportunity to develop life-long friendships and networks within the context of real community impact.”
Craig, Class of 1998
Fellows have a hand in almost every grant that El Pomar Foundation makes, whether that be through writing grant recommendations or directing the Foundation’s programs. This is the Fellowship by the numbers:
Total number of grants made in Colorado in 2021
Total grant dollars awarded in 2021
The percentage of grants awarded to rural communities in 2021
Leadership development, community stewardship and administrative programs directed and operated by Fellows
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