State News
Governor Northam announces launch of 2018 Governor’s Fellows Program
February 15, 2018

RICHMOND – Governor Ralph Northam announced today the launch of the 2018 Governor’s Fellows Program. The Governor’s Fellows Program offers graduate students, rising college seniors, and graduating college seniors the opportunity to experience firsthand the administration of state government in the Commonwealth. These outstanding and highly motivated students will have the opportunity to learn directly under Cabinet secretaries in the Office of the Governor.

“The Governor’s Fellows program is a phenomenal opportunity for young people to learn about the workings of state government and make a contribution to their Commonwealth,” said Governor Northam. “Bringing young, energetic Virginians into the office during the summer challenges us to develop more intentional, stronger proposals that create a Virginia that works for everyone. Ours Fellows represent the best of Virginia: students willing to give up their summer in the name of public service for their fellow citizens.”

“The Governor’s Fellows Program introduces young Virginians to state government with a desire to serve. Their energy is palpable, and their perspective is needed.” added Chief of Staff Clark Mercer, speaking to the importance of the Fellows Program

Governor Chuck Robb created this prestigious program in 1982. Since then, it has offered college students a hands-on opportunity to learn about state government at the top level. Previous members have gone on to pursue careers in various levels of state and federal government, each using their skills acquired during their Fellows experience.

“Being a Governor’s Fellow is a transformative professional experience,” said Richmond Mayor Levar M. Stoney, a 2004 Governor’s Fellow under the Warner administration and former Secretary of the Commonwealth of Virginia under Governor Terry McAuliffe. “It’s a unique opportunity to see your government at work from the inside out and to learn from the best and brightest public servants in our Commonwealth. The relationships and experience gained from my time as a Governor’s Fellow were invaluable to my professional growth, and the program will continue to prepare the leaders of tomorrow.”

“I wouldn’t be where I am today without my start in the Governor’s Fellows Program,” said Anna James, Director of Business Development for Sentara Healthcare. “From the life-long friendships I have built, to the mentors I met, I thank the Fellows Program for giving me the needed skills and relationships to be so successful today.”

Fellows are given the opportunity to cultivate and sharpen leadership skills by taking on various tasks and projects. The Fellows also learn from special guest speakers from the administration and take field trips across the Commonwealth.

Qualified applicants must be:

  • Rising college seniors, graduating college seniors, or enrolled as degree candidates in a graduate/professional school;
  • Enrolled in a Virginia college/university, or a Virginia resident enrolled in an out-of-state institution;
  • Able to demonstrate leadership ability and academic excellence;
  • Involved in extracurricular activities; and
  • Active in community service.

The selection of Fellows will be based solely on merit. The Fellows Program does not discriminate based on race, sex, color, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, political affiliation, disability, or veteran status.

The deadline to apply for the Governor’s Fellows Program is March 18, 2018 at 11:59p.m. The program directors will review applications and will conduct interviews from March 26 through April 6, 2018. Decisions will be issued starting in mid-April. The Program runs from June 4, 2018 until August 3, 2018.

Applicants should submit their recommendation letters and transcripts to:

Benjamin Hermerding
Governor’s Fellows Program Director
Patrick Henry Building
1111 East Broad Street
Richmond, Virginia 23219

For more information on the 2018 Governor’s Fellows Program, please visit

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