Rethink MS Fellowship Header

The Rethink Mississippi Fellowship will invest in millennial Mississippians who are passionate about making a long-term impact in their home state. With financial support, guidance, and networking, you’ll get the boost you need to create lasting positive change in Mississippi.

Are you a Community Catalyst?

The fellowship is a yearlong project-based leadership development experience for five millennial-age Mississippians. We’re looking for individuals who have displayed strong organizational skills, are engaged in their communities, and have a commitment to solving the state’s entrenched challenges. Those selected will become our first cohort of Community Catalysts.

The Fellowship

Each fellow will receive a stipend of $5,000 and a discretionary budget of $5,000 to apply toward a self-designed project that will make their communities more livable for the state’s rising generation.

Over the course of the year, the Winter Institute staff and partners will convene the fellows regularly to support their projects and equip them with the tools they need to be catalysts for long-term change.

Eligibility and Details

  • Any Mississippi resident between the ages of 21 and 35 who wants to make the state a better place to live for themselves and others. We are looking for innovative thinkers who have a demonstrated record of leadership, community engagement, and passion for the state of Mississippi.
  • Fellows should be effective at working on their own and as part of a team. Each fellow will receive a grant to apply toward a self-designed project that addresses a community need. They will also be expected to work on collaborative projects with other fellows, Winter Institute staff, and community partners. We are looking for a diverse and representative cohort of young Mississippians.
  • There are no academic or professional requirements. All experience will be considered in the selection process. Fellows can be enrolled in school or hold full-time jobs as long as they are able to participate in all of the mandatory in-person and virtual convenings. Estimated time commitment will average to 5-10 hours per week for 12 months.
  • Fellows will be required to live in Mississippi for the duration of the 12-month commitment.
  • Personal stipends will be paid in installments throughout the year. Project funds will be disbursed in accordance with approved timeline.

How to Apply

Please fill out the form below, and we’ll contact you if we have any follow-up questions. Finalists will be invited to participate in a Zoom interview.

Deadline: August 31, 2020

For questions, please contact Jake McGraw ( and Jeran Herbert (

Fellowship Application

  • Your Information

  • Your Experience

    Tell us what you've done
  • Tell us about your educational background (academic, extracurricular, and anything else of note). We don't have specific educational requirements, but we do want to get a sense of your interests and skills.
  • Please list relevant work experience (this can include internships, other fellowships, and volunteer work). No specific experience is required, but this helps us learn more about your background.
  • Please describe ways you've been active in the communities you've been part of (can be formal or informal: organizational leadership, volunteer service, community organizing, political activism, etc.)
  • Accepted file types: pdf, docx, doc.
    Upload a copy of your resume/CV: .pdf, .docx, .doc
  • Your Vision

    Tell us what you'd like to do
  • It's no secret that many millennials are leaving the state. Tell us why you want to be here.
  • Dream big. Tell us what we could do to make Mississippi a better place to live for the rising generation.
  • Give us between 1-3 project ideas (new organizations, initiatives, events, etc.) that would address a pressing need in your community. Each fellow will receive $5,000 to invest in a project they will design over the next year. We don't expect you to have it figured out now, and you won't be bound to the projects you propose here. Consider this a brainstorming session. We want to hear the kind of ideas that come to your mind.
  • We want to see and hear from you directly. Please create a video, no more than 3 minutes long, telling us about yourself, your community, and why you want to be a catalyst for change in Mississippi. We're not judging on quality or editing (recording on your phone is fine); we just want to hear what makes you passionate and a great fit for our fellowship. When you've recorded your video, upload it to YouTube, Google Drive, Dropbox, or any site that will generate a shareable link (make sure others are able to view it). Then paste your link in the box.
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.