Fellows Program in Public Affairs

Since 1947, the Fellows Program has equipped emerging Southern California leaders with the resources they need to understand how decisions are made, how complex policies are shaped, and how to influence meaningful change. Using the city as a classroom, Coro Fellows learn through interactions with private, public, and nonprofit decision-makers and work as a group to develop critical thinking, analytical, governance and leadership skills. Coro Fellows join an unparalleled community of engaged alumni and leave the program with an understanding of how Southern California works and with the knowledge and skills to make it better.


The Coro Fellows Program in Public Affairs in Los Angeles is an experience-based fellowship focused on understanding how to be effective in an ever-changing, complex society. Fellows gain experience, exposure, and new skill sets through four major programmatic components: field placements, seminars, leadership interviews, and focus weeks. The program demands stamina, rigorous thinking and analysis, and a deeply self-reflective approach to learning. Through their group work, placements and other activities, Fellows seek to better understand the systems that influence how Los Angeles functions, as well as how an individual’s personal values, biases, and approach to working with others can shape their impact and the outcomes they achieve.

  • Placements allow Fellows to gain direct exposure to varied sectors and institutions in Southern California and offer participants the opportunity to build robust professional networks. Each Fellow completes a government, electoral politics, labor, business, and nonprofit placement and is responsible for delivering a high-quality project to each organization at which he/she works.
  • Weekly Seminars build self-awareness, inquiry and critical thinking skills, introducing Fellows to tools and frameworks that increase their ability to successfully contribute to an effective and collaborative group and lead change. Additionally, seminars allow Fellows to explore the city through experiential activities that help them better understand the neighborhoods of Los Angeles, organizations and key policy issues facing the city.
  • Leadership Interviews offer Fellows access to an influential cross-section of city leaders, helping them gain insight and diverse perspectives on the challenges of leadership. These closed-door sessions provide Fellows with the rare opportunity to explore the motivation, method, and logic of the individuals shaping our city’s future.
  • Focus Weeks immerse Fellows in the exploration of a single topic for a full week, including an exploration of the California state government system and other topics that vary by year.

The Coro Fellowship in Public Affairs is offered in five regions: Los Angeles, New York, Pittsburgh, St. Louis, and San Francisco. The Fellowship is a full-time, 9-month program, beginning in September and ending in May. If you are interested in learning more about the Coro Fellowship, please complete the online interest form and a staff member will be in touch shortly.


THE NETWORK – As a Coro Fellow, you gain access to high-level professionals in all sectors and join an engaged alumni network of over 10,000 accomplished leaders nationally who are dedicated to supporting one another and to improving the region and the nation.

THE KNOWLEDGE – Fellows immerse themselves in an intensive exploration of current cross-sector issues, gaining first-hand insights through discussions with leaders at the forefront of social change and diving into hands-on placements that collectively become a catalyst for unparalleled career and personal growth.

THE SKILLS – Coro Fellows learn from a diversity of opinions, styles and world views, develop the capacity to approach and break down complex problems, and gain on-the-job experience across a variety of placements, equipping them with the tools to drive social change in effective and collaborative ways.


For those who qualify, Coro Southern California offers a monthly stipend to ease the financial burden of participating in the Fellowship. Stipends are based on financial need, and monthly payments typically range between $500 to $2,000. Beyond the stipend, Coro supports fellows by helping source affordable and subsidized housing in Los Angeles through the alumni network. In addition, Coro also offers $80 a month as reimbursement for health insurance.

As participants in an academic enrichment program, Coro Fellows qualify for loan deferral with certain types of student loans. Fellows will have to initiate those conversations with their respective lenders and Coro is happy to support that process.


Field placements are a vital part of the full-time Coro Fellowship. During their nine-month experience, Fellows rotate through five sector placements in nonprofit, government, labor, private/ business, and electoral politics, gaining exposure to a wide range of industries while also offering the hosting organization skillful support on new or ongoing projects. Placements support Coro Fellows’ learning in public affairs and their effectiveness as future leaders.

Placement Hosts are supervisors or “field faculty” who can provide hands-on learning experiences through shadowing key executives, interviewing staff and stakeholders, and projects that help Fellows understand how the organization and the sector work. Fellows provide value to the host organization through projects they complete, as well as their fresh insights, innovative thinking, and enthusiasm to learn and engage.

Placement Duration: Each sector placement lasts approximately 3-4 weeks. During the placement period, Fellows are available full-time, Monday – Thursday, with the exception of mandatory Coro seminars on Fridays and on Tuesday evenings. This year’s anticipated sector placement schedule is as follows:

  • Nonprofit: September 19 – October 14, 2022 
  • Electoral Campaigns: October 24 – November 10, 2022
  • Business: November 28 – December 23, 2022 
  • Government: January 9 – February 3, 2023
  • Labor: February 13 – March 3, 2023 

To learn more, complete our interest form or reach out directly to Abril Iñiguez-Rivas at abril@corola.org.

To apply to host a Fellow, complete our application (a reference copy of the placement application questions is available here).


“Coro Fellows have the ability to come on board, enter a situation and immediately start helping, participating and contributing.”

Shirley Jahad
Former Project Host and Journalist

In the final months of their fellowship, Coro Fellows consult on or complete projects for interested organizations of any sector or industry. Fellows work closely with organization supervisors to determine ideal outcomes. The 2022 Project Periods will take place from March 20, 2023 – April 14, 2023 (Period I) and April 17, 2023 – May 12, 2023 (Period II), with a suggested donation request associated for each period.

To learn more:

  • View or download a Coro Project flyer
  • Contact Abril Iñiguez-Rivas at abril@corola.org with questions or to schedule an informational conversation
  • Ready to request a project? View dates, deadlines, and apply here
Coro will be conducting a variety of virtual information sessions during the Fall 2022 for interested candidates. See below for details on how to register.


October 26 at 12 pm PT – Coro Fellows Program in Public Affairs Information Session featuring 2021-22 FPPA alumnus Aryon Shahidzadeh. Watch recording here.
Aryon Shahidzadeh

December 13 at 12 pm PT – Coro Fellows Program in Public Affairs Alumni Ask-Me-Anything featuring 2021-22 FPPA alumni Aryon Shahidzadeh & Hira Shah – Register here
Aryon Shahidzadeh
Hira Shah

Thank you to our Supporters

Fellowship Funds

Andrea Van de Kamp Fund

Breslauer, Rutman and Anderson Inc.

Bruce Corwin Fund

John Kobara Fund

Rick Tuttle Fund





Fellowship Impact: 2018 Coro Crystal Awards Gala