The Roddenberry Fellowship is focused on defending and protecting Civil Rights; Immigration & Refugee Rights; LGBTQIA & Women’s Rights; and the Environment.
Applying for the Fellowship is a two-step process. In the first round, individuals provide preliminary information about who they are, what they’re working on, and what they plan to do. If selected for the second round, individuals will be asked for a more detailed account of their plans and what they aim to achieve.
We’re looking for individuals and their initiatives that push boundaries, seek new ways of approaching systemic and entrenched problems, and/or leverage specific opportunities in unconventional ways. We care about a well-thought-out plan, clear goals, specific metrics, and measurable impact. Just as importantly, we care about your vision. Does your work have potential to make a significant difference? Will it inspire others? Is it audacious? Check out our eligibility and criteria to learn more.
The approach to achieving impact is open and to be determined by each Fellow. You’re the experts in these issue areas - it’s not up to us to determine the best approach. That said, we are interested in ambitious, creative initiatives likely to affect a significant portion of a target population, geography, or community. Hyper-local initiatives or those small in scope are great but not aligned with our Fellowship goals. You also don’t need to be well-known or have 50K twitter followers – we want individuals with a track record of success, a bold vision for the future, and initiatives with potential for large-scale change.
Anyone over the age of 18 who is a United States citizen, permanent resident, DACA recipient, or current visa holder who resides in the 50 United States and its territories is eligible to apply. All proposals must be for charitable, educational, or scientific purposes and may not be for political or legislative purposes. 501c4 organizations are not eligible, but if you have a 501c3 arm of the organization, we can fund you as long as your work is legally separate from the 501c4 and the grant is earmarked as such.
As basic freedoms are undermined, nationalism and xenophobia flourish, inhibitions against hate speech loosen, and environmental deregulation continues unabated, the need for new narratives and solutions is profound. Now more than ever, we need more people to step up and engage; to reject the mainstreaming of hate and bigotry; to push ourselves and others to think (and act) differently; and to protect the most vulnerable from those who wield power in destructive ways.
Here are important dates to keep in mind and please review the timeline for more details.
Round One Application Deadline: September 19, 2018, 5:00 PM Pacific
Invitation to Round Two Application: October 23, 2018
Round Two Application Deadline: November 13, 2018, 5:00 PM Pacific
Announcement of Fellows: December 2018
Fellowship Duration: January 1 - December 31, 2019
The time commitment for the 12-month Fellowship, outside of Fellows’ work on their own initiatives, is approximately five hours a month, plus a five-day convening in February. This includes:
- 6 hours of professional coaching over 12 months
- 1-2 hours for monthly cohort check-ins and guest expert calls
- 1-2 hours per quarter for a progress report and updates to the Foundation
- Professional development opportunities, as they arise (optional)
- Plus: 5 days + travel for in-person cohort convening
Fellowship funds will be awarded as grants to achieve impact described in the application, including but not limited to salaries, project development, and technology. Funding received from The Roddenberry Foundation must be used for the project’s purposes and to ensure success. Please see our sample agreement for more information.
No, 501c3 status is not a requirement and we accept applications from individuals who are affiliated with movements, institutions, networks, or loosely structured organizations.
No, definitely not. Whether you’ve been doing this work for one year or a decade is less relevant than how you approach the issues, your vision for change, track record, and the impact you’ve made.
The core of the Fellowship is unchanged. We are still focusing on four key issue areas – Civil Rights, Immigration & Refugee Rights, LGBTQIA and Women’s Rights, and Environmental Protection – and the duration, benefits, and award are the same. We have made changes to the applications and we have recruited a new, incredible cohort of judges. We have also adjusted the criteria for the Fellowship to refine the process by which Fellows are selected.
Yes, absolutely. There’s actually a question on the application where you can tell us how your ideas and initiative have evolved since last year.
All information submitted in applications and supplemental materials is confidential and will be used solely by the Foundation for judging and selection.
While we recognize that this work is collaborative, the Fellowship is designed to support individual activist and changemakers. We know you work with other amazing people and that social change is a collective endeavor, but you must apply as an individual.
We created a $2mil organizational budget cap to help us find leaders of early-stage ideas, new projects, or long-standing but small organizations. We are interested in individuals and organizations that are on the cusp of growth rather than larger, more established organizations that generally have more access to resources (though this work is never easy).