We each have something unique to offer in the work of better our country, and if you have a talent for using technology to really engage people, the Code for America fellowship may be the best way for you to make a real difference. You won’t risk your life, but it will be challenging, it will push your limits and give you new skills and perspective, and it will be hugely rewarding. It’s about using your skills to give back. We’re a “Peace Corps for geeks” and to borrow their tagline: it will be the toughest job you’ll ever love.
How do I apply?
The application process begins with the completion of a simple web form. We’re looking for information about your past experiences and work product, as well as a clear indication of interest in the program. Candidates advancing in the process will be asked for interviews and references. Here’s the timeline:
- July 31: Application Deadline
- September 1: Selection Notification
- October 2012: Public Announcement of Fellows
- January 2013: Program Start
Who are we looking for?
Anyone with the skills and passion to make cities work better using technology. Our fellows range from those just kicking off their careers to seasoned professionals looking to give back. All of you will want to see make a difference for cities and improve the way government works.
Do I need to be a coder?
We are building small project teams here, so we’re not just looking for developers. We need designers, product managers, and researchers. So yes, we will be developing serious and innovative technology for each city, and for that we need high-caliber developers and programmers. But we’ll also need researchers to determine the city’s needs, project managers to translate those needs into features, designers to fashion those features into a usable application, and business analysts to integrate that application in a sustainable system. We need folks who can bring new technologies into city governments and help spread change. We need passionate, smart, diplomatic people who get how technology can help government work better, and can convince others of the value of trying something new.
Where would I be working?
The program is based out of San Francisco, where fellows will spend the majority of their time in order to share of resources across the teams, engage in training and development exercises, and connect with mentors and speakers from the Silicon Valley and San Francisco-based technologies communities. In the month of February, however, the fellows will be embedded on-site in their assigned cities, working with city officials and meeting with community members to achieve a deep understanding of the city and the community — learnings necessary for project development.
Can non-US residents apply?
As a startup, Code for America cannot at this time sponsor work visas for international applicants. Non-US citizens with the necessary paperwork to participate in the year-long fellowship are welcome to apply.
Great. This is only the fourth year for Code for America so we don’t have all the answers yet, so don’t hesitate to get in touch. We’re working hard to put all the pieces together. But no piece is more important than getting the right people to raise their hands and say “I’m in. I want to help.”
Can we see a few hands?