Once you have defined your goals and have an idea of the type of activity you would like to pursue, you will be ready to start exploring your options. One way of exploring your options is to discuss them with trusted advisers and mentors.
While Fellowship Programs advisers are the people to talk to about fellowship applications, the specifics of your proposal, whom to ask for letters, etc, be sure also to tap in, as appropriate, to the expertise of our colleagues within CIPE:
Discussing your thoughts with a faculty mentor is especially important if you intend to carry out a research project or apply for funding for graduate study. (Read our advice on how to start conversations with potential writers of letters of recommendation and language evaluations, and advice from OCS about how to prepare for an informational interview.)
Faculty members from all of Yale’s schools are involved in a multitude of international research projects and collaborations in every part of the world. See departmental websites or the international research database.
If you intend to carry out a language program or to undertake a project in a second language, your language instructor may well have useful insights which will help you prepare yourself for the challenges of living and working in a second language.
Find advice on international research and more from the regional experts at the Yale University Library. Also, be sure to consult your personal librarian, who will have expert advice on the resources you will want to look out for, and on how to access them. Don't miss out on this terrific resource for Yale students.
Visit the Cultural Center for the region of the world in which you are interested and attend some of their events. Talk to people with similar interests and tell them about your plans.
The Yale World Fellows are on campus for the fall semester and happy to engage with Yale College students. If the activity you would like to pursue is related to the field of expertise of one of the Yale World Fellows, you may wish to reach out to them.
The Yale Undergraduate Research Association is a student organization dedicated to building a community that promotes undergraduate research here at Yale, as well as connects disciplines, resources, and individuals on campus. Have a look at their database which contains information regarding the work of over 1400 faculty members across all of Yale College's departments and several of the university's graduate programs.
Residential College Graduate Affiliates and Resident Fellows often have experience in planning and carrying out projects and undertaking research, and are likely to have some valuable advice for you.
Contacts and acquaintances from your extra-curricular activities may have expertise or contacts in the field in which you are interested.
Previous competition winners are often happy to share their stories and may have some useful hints and tips about preparing your project and the application process. Hear from other Yalies.
Don't forget, Yale hosts over 4,000 students and scholars from over 100 different countries each year. Maybe one of your classmates, professors or teaching assistants is familiar with the country or region to which you are hoping to go, and this is a great opportunity to get to know that person better, too.
The Yale Career Network is a database of thousands of alumni who are interested in networking with you. This network will allow you to connect with alumni to discuss career objectives and explore career interests. With the right connections, it may be possible to arrange your own internship.
Yale International Alumni Clubs and alumni living abroad are usually very willing to assist current students who are interested in coming to their countries. They can be a great contact to help set up everything from internships to housing.
Previous employers, community leaders and organizations who carry out work or research similar to the focus of your project may be willing to offer you an insight into what to expect and how to plan.
If you have a specific region in mind, you may wish to explore and reach out to NGOs or community organizations which operate in the area.
- Think carefully about how to approach each of these individuals or groups.
- Advising conversations are usually more productive if you present a tangible idea to your adviser upon which they can give you feedback.
- Be open to analyzing, criticizing and revising your ideas with whomever you speak to.
- Be sure to thank the people you have approached for their thoughts, even if you ultimately decide to take a different path.