Payne Fellowship Program

Payne Fellowship Program

About the Payne Fellowship Program

The USAID Donald Payne International Development Graduate Fellowship Program seeks to attract outstanding young people who are interested in pursuing careers in the Foreign service of the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). The Payne Fellowship provides benefits valued at up to $96,000 over two years toward a two-year master’s degree, arranges internships on Capitol Hill and at USAID missions overseas, and provides professional development and support activities. Fellows who successfully complete the program become USAID Foreign Service Officers.

USAID Foreign Service Officers work in close partnership with the governments and people of more than 100 countries in five regions of the world, with private voluntary organizations, universities, private businesses, trade and professional associations, other donor governments, faith-based organizations, and other US government agencies. They assess country needs, prepare strategic plans, design and evaluate programs, oversee budgets and contracts, and report on results.

Location of award, if applicable: U.S. universities and internships in Washington, D.C.

Eligible applicants:

University endorsement required?


Citizenship requirement:

Must be U.S. citizen

The Payne Fellowship Program application process:

Review the information on the fellowship website to gain a better understanding of the program requirements, application process, eligibility, and employment and contractual obligations.

Contact a CFSA advisor and your mentor(s) to discuss your interest in the fellowship and plans to apply.

Application will be made concurrently with graduate school applications. Approved areas of study include international development, international relations, public policy, business administration, foreign languages, economics, agriculture, environmental sciences, health, or urban planning.

Application opens in October.

Application components include:
– a completed online application form
– a personal statement
– a statement explaining the need for financial assistance to attend graduate school
– Student Aid Report (SAR) generated from the FAFSA form
– two letters of recommendation
– proof of US citizenship
– GRE or GMAT scores
– transcript(s) of all colleges you have attended

Applications deadline is November 1.

Interested? Contact CFSA for more information on how to get started!

Advising contact:

Center for Fellowship & Scholarship Advising  Email: More Information:

Enter any terms you are interested, such as “Government” or “Biotechnology”,