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How do I apply for the China Gridiron Fellowship?

To apply for the GLF’s China Gridiron Fellowship, please fill out our application and provide the attachments therein to your university’s Program Officer.

When is the deadline for applications?

The deadline for submitting your completed application for the China Gridiron Fellowship is March 15, 2015 at 11:59 PST. Incomplete applications and applications received after the deadline are not considered.

When will I be notified about the results of my application?

Gridiron Leaders Foundation will contact applicants before April 30th 2015.

I will not have completed my bachelor’s degree before August 1, 2015. Can I apply?

No. In order to be eligible to apply, candidates must have completed their bachelor’s degree before the beginning of the program.

I am not a U.S. citizen, but I live and work in the United States. Can I apply?

No. All applicants must be citizen of the United States.

How many fellows will belong to the 2015 fellowship class?

The pilot for the China Gridiron Fellowship will include at least two (2) and no more than six (6) fellows. GLF funds the full cost of the fellowship, and the number of fellows is based on the success of our fundraising campaign.

What should I expect from the teams?

The teams and Host Coach (HC) offer basic support to GLF staff and fellows throughout the year. Fellows can expect the team and HC to provide helpful information and support for the fellow adjusting to China. The HC assists GLF with locating suitable residences in the host city. The HC will also act as an intermediary for maintaining relations between their local football players and the visiting fellow. They are a reliable source of information for fellows and give them important information about local customs, etiquette, food, safety, shopping, and fulfilling other daily needs upon the fellows’ arrival.

The team and HCs will not be responsible for any financial contribution and are not required to help with daily life once the fellow is settled. There is an expectation that fellows will gain independence and be able to do more after the first two months in their placement city. The HC will set aside a few days during the first few weeks of the program to help the fellow grow accustomed to living in China.

What should the teams expect from me?

The team expects fellows to assist in their development as players and a team. Fellows are more than coaches to the team; they are role models. Teams expect for the team to be an authentic resource for learning about football and how to play the game. Fellows will negotiate their role with their team, but typically, fellows offer help organizing the management and operations of the team, implementing practice plans, skills instructions, and offensive and defensive game plans.

Fellows will work to identify a few goals at the start of their football commitment and execute a plan to achieve these goals throughout the course of their fellowship.

How many hours should I expect to pay to each aspect of the fellowship (language, team, professional placement)?

The first month in China will be dedicated to the language portion of the fellowship. They should expect to commit at least 30-40 hours a week to studying mandarin.

Following the completion of 100 hours of mandarin lessons, fellows should expect to spend at least 25 hours a week on their individual profession placements. Time at their professional placements will vary and fellows should remain flexible about the necessary commitment for each placement.

There is no minimum time requirement that fellows should commit to their football team. Fellows are expected, however, to attend weekly practices, meetings, and games with their team.

Where will I be stationed in China? Where will I live?

GLF staff works with job recruiters, foundations, and local teams to offer fellows the most desired locations for their fellowship year. Staff also works with fellows to decide on the most suitable professional experience for that individual. We will provide a local language plan and professional placements well in advance of their arrival in China.

The HC and staff will identify a few living arrangements prior to the fellow’s arrival. Upon their arrival in their host city, fellows will live in a hotel while exploring and looking at apartments with their HC. Apartment size and amenities will vary according to the city and requirements of the fellows themselves. Living arrangements will vary since the cost of living across cities will vary.

What are the program dates for the China Gridiron Fellowship?

The fellowship orientation will begin in Shanghai, China in early August, 2015. We will convene a 7-10 day orientation in the city before fellows set out to begin their language, job, and team placements. Following the conclusion of their fellowship, Fellows will also meet for a short debriefing and exit counseling.

Can I defer a year if my application is accepted?

Successful candidates may not defer their membership in the China Gridiron Fellowship at this time. GLF asks that candidates re-apply for a fellowship with the foundation each year they will become CG Fellows.

What are the criteria to qualify for the fellowship?

Eligible candidates must be citizens of the United States of America, achieve a bachelor’s degree before the start date of the program, and be under the age of 30 by the start of the fellowship.

They must also have achieved an overall undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or above (4.000 scale). CG Fellows exhibit the values of American Football beyond the minimum requirements, which include, but are not limited to: leadership, accountability, teamwork, sportsmanship, passion, and citizenship.

They also exhibit personal qualities, such as: adaptability, creativity, humility, patience, leadership, openness to new ideas, and respect for cultural differences.

My university is not a nominating institution, can I still apply?

No. Fellow must graduate from a participating GLF institution. If you do have a desire to apply and your institution is not on our nominating list, please inquire about a possible affiliation with our staff via email: fellowship@chinagridiron.com.

I am very interested in the program, but did not play college football, can I still apply?

No. Fellows must have participated as a player on one of our participating institutions’ football teams.

I am not able to apply this year. Can I apply next year?

Yes. We do consider applicants who have previously applied. The CG fellowship program will be continued in 2016. If there are circumstances that prevent you from participating in the program this year, we welcome eligible candidates to apply during the next application cycle.

What costs does Gridiron Leaders Foundation cover during the China Gridiron Fellowship?

Gridiron Leaders Foundation covers all costs of participation in the China Gridiron Fellowship (Travel to china, housing, food, local transportation, and entertainment). During the orientation, fellows will also receive a small stipend to supplement program activities and will cover the cost of all meals and incidentals.

Should my professional placement relate to my previous work or internship experience or can I seek a new professional experience?

Fellows have the choice of selecting job placements that relates to past or future career interests. Some CG fellows use the year to focus on gaining certain skills and experiences that will help them reenter a previous sector of employment with heightened perspective and positions. Other fellows use their experience in China to learn about and engage with a new professional area of interest.

What benefits and expectations exist for Senior CG Fellows?

Alumnus of the program will benefit from the network of intellectuals, professionals, and mentors that work with GLF to make the program possible. Program officers will work to build opportunities available only to the Senior CG Fellows Network. Information about educational and employment opportunities, speaking events, seminars, and meet-ups are to be offered to Senior CG Fellows. The most important benefit will be the bond that they forge with the other fellows in their class and the relationships they nurture with the teams.

Alums are expected to be ambassadors for GLF and engage with potential applicants during the annual selection process. This may be performing an interview with applicants who pass the initial selection phase. It may also mean presenting an informational session at their school or in front of their institution’s football team.

What are Gridiron Leaders Foundation’s goals in relation to the China Gridiron Fellowship?

The Gridiron Leaders Foundation looks to educate the next generation of American leaders through this experiential, professional, and athletic exposure in China. They look to connect former student-athletes with global opportunities and enable them to become global-minded leaders. The Gridiron Leaders Foundation also hopes to foster a holistic appreciation for Chinese culture and society, while highlighting to the world the positive power of America’s most beloved game.

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