Application Procedures Announced for the 2012 Harvard Fire Executive Fellowship Program

January 9, 2012 – EMMITSBURG, MD – Application procedures have been announced for the 2012 Harvard Fire Executive Fellowship Program. 

The program is once again sponsored through a partnership between the International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC), International Fire Service Training Association, Fire Protection Publications (IFSTA/FPP), the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), and the U.S. Fire Administration (USFA).
USFA Administrator Ernie Mitchell in announcing the 2012 program said, “The U.S. Fire Administration and our funding partners, the IAFC, IFSTA/FPP, and the NFPA are excited and remain committed to sponsor a number of fellowships in the Senior Executives in State and Local Government Program at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government this summer. Our nation’s fire executives need superior professional development experiences to increase their leadership capacity and the State and Local Program is a premier opportunity. As a former Fire Chief, I know that productive relationships among careerists, elected officials, and appointed authorities can lead to innovative solutions to tough problems and policy decisions which result in positive outcomes. This program provides a world class opportunity to explore and expand these relationships in ways that increase innovative leadership within state and local government settings.”

Senior fire executives who are selected will be awarded fellowships to attend Harvard’s annual Senior Executives in State and Local Government Program.  The 3-week program is conducted on the Harvard campus in Cambridge, Massachusetts.  Selected Fellows will be assigned one of the two session dates: June 4-22, 2012 or July 9-27, 2012. Applications seeking a fellowship must be available to attend either session.

The following criteria and guidelines have been established for the 2012 program:
  • Application is open to senior fire executives who have demonstrated significant career accomplishments and have the potential to impact and initiate change.  Attainment of a senior position is less important than demonstrated experience in facilitating significant change within a public sector setting. 
  • Preference may be given to applicants who are graduates of the National Fire Academy’s Executive Fire Officer Program, although program completion is not a prerequisite. Preference may also be given to applicants who have completed graduate-level degree programs or course work.
  • Individuals whose organizations have been represented in the Harvard Fellowship Program during 2009, 2010, or 2011 will not be considered. The program is available to international participants.
  • Finalists for the Harvard Fellowships will be asked to develop and present a five-year plan during their interview session, describing how they will use the opportunity if awarded a fellowship to enhance Fire-EMS services at the local, regional, tribal, state/province/territory, and at a national or international level. If selected as a finalist, more details will be provided. As in the past, selected Fellows can expect to be contacted in the future by any of the sponsors to assist and support ongoing projects to utilize their specialized knowledge and skills.
Application Instructions
Please follow these three steps carefully as the application procedures have changed from prior years.
  1. Applicants must complete and submit the Harvard/Kennedy School of Government Application For Executive Education. Please read the instructions before completing the application. It is recommended that this form be saved to your computer. For the question “Who will be the financial sponsor of your participation?” please enter “IAFC/FPP-IFSTA/NFPA/USFA Fellowship.” Make sure that you attach your essay responses (250 words or less for each question response).
  2. Enclose a current resume or curriculum vitae.
  3. Enclose a letter of recommendation from your senior official. If the applicant is the Chief, the letter should be written by the jurisdictional head (e.g., Mayor or City Manager). Otherwise, the recommendation should be from the Fire Chief.

Please do not submit your application package directly to the Harvard Kennedy School of Government.  Mail the application package (traceable mail with receipt is recommended) no later than February 21, 2012 (postmark) to the following address:

Harvard Fellowship Program
International Association of Fire Chiefs
c/o Ms. Cynthia Cox
4025 Fair Ridge Drive – Suite 300
Fairfax, Virginia  22033-2868

For questions regarding application procedures only, please contact Ms. Mary Wingert at the U.S. Fire Administration at (301) 447-1085 or  

If the applicant’s organization or position should change (voluntarily or involuntarily) after the application package has been submitted, she/he is obligated to notify Ms. Wingert.

Application packages postmarked after February 21, 2012, will not be considered.

For more information regarding the Senior Executives in State and Local Government Program, refer to the Harvard University/John F. Kennedy School of Government Senior Executives in State and Local Government website. 

Fellowship applicants are reminded to follow the application instructions within this announcement.

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