What is the timeline of the PiLA Fellow process from application to placement?

PiLA Fellows are screened and placed through an annual process, according to the following schedule. Note that if you are offered a placement as a fellow, you may need to move quickly in order to secure the appropriate visa for the living and working abroad for a year as a stipended volunteer before your agreed upon departure date. Spearheading this process is the responsibility of the fellow, to be carried out with advice and support from the partner. PiLA can provide a letter verifying the fellow’s status in support of this process but has limited ability to advise or provide additional support to fellows in visa-related matters.

September through January

The PiLA application officially opens in mid-September and closes in mid-November. Late applications are not accepted. From November through January, applicants pass through two rounds. Semifinalists are selected through a thorough review of their written materials and are interviewed in person or via Skype. Finalists are selected on the basis of their materials and their interviews. All applicants are notified of their status by late January.

February through early May

PiLA partners receive shortlists of finalists that we provide them beginning in February and begin conducting their own interviews. From February through April, PiLA staff distribute partners’ offers to finalists on a weekly basis. Finalists have one week to consider each offer(s) before accepting or declining a position with a PiLA partner. Once a finalist has accepted an offer, they sign an agreement with the partner and PiLA and then remit a placement fee. We aim to fill all our partners’ requests for PiLA Fellows by early May.

June through August

Mandatory orientation is held on the Princeton University campus, usually the second weekend in June (the 2021 orientation will be June 12-13). As in the case of 2020, if public health conditions do not allow for the new cohort to travel to New Jersey, orientation will be held virtually. As applicable, new Fellows may travel to their posts in the field after orientation, to begin on the start date they have negotiated with their partner.