What is Baltimore Corps?
Baltimore Corps connects talent to opportunity in one of America’s greatest cities. We do this by organizing and running a number of programs in Baltimore. Through the Baltimore Corps Fellowship, we recruit highly talented, mission-driven professionals and connect them to cause leaders to work full time scaling social impact. Baltimore Corps is also dedicated to creating opportunities for Baltimore’s young people and high skill volunteers through Play More B'More. Our mission is to invest in strong leadership and double down on solutions that work—if we do that, we can make Baltimore the social change capital of the nation.
How did Baltimore Corps start?
Fagan Harris and Wes Moore co-founded Baltimore Corps in 2013, working from the central insight that talented Millennials could be recruited to tackle a post-industrial city’s biggest challenges and retained to grow its important population of next generation leaders. Baltimore Corps was founded in partnership with the Straus Foundation and The Aspen Institute Franklin Project Summit on National Service. The first class of ten Baltimore Corps Fellows began work with their host Visionary Cause Leaders in October 2014.
Baltimore is the front line of social justice in America. We have urgent challenges that demand fresh solutions, as well as the potential to overcome them and rewrite our city’s narrative. The country looks to Baltimore, both as an epicenter of social problems and a hub of leaders pioneering new strategies and models. We believe that if we can drive meaningful progress in Baltimore, we can shine a light for communities everywhere. In short, one of our core tenets is that Baltimore is the best place to solve the country’s hardest challenges.
What are the advantages to being a Baltimore Corps Fellow?
Each Fellow has the opportunity to work closely with Baltimore's most effective leaders of social change. Baltimore Corps also holistically supports the professional development of each Fellow through retreats, personalized coaching, community dinners, and 360º degree feedback designed to amplify each Fellow’s professional and personal growth.
Baltimore Corps Fellows are welcomed into an extensive network and a supportive community dedicated to promoting each Fellow’s long-term success in Baltimore City and beyond.
What does Baltimore Corps look for in prospective Fellows?
Baltimore Corps seeks Fellows who are as dynamic as our city. All of our Fellows are capable leaders and critical thinkers who have strong visions and passion for social impact. While a typical Fellow has 5 to 10 years of professional experience, some Fellows are recent college graduates or bring non-traditional career and educational backgrounds to our community.
If I am not accepted, can I apply again next year?
Absolutely. Each year we collaborate with a growing number of social entrepreneurs and cause leaders whom we hope to connect to talented Fellows passionate about building and scaling social enterprise. Every year, our partners’ needs evolve, so even if we are unable to place you this year, you may be a perfect fit in future program years.
What is a Visionary Cause Leader?
A Visionary Cause Leader, or VCL, is a partner organization that is tackling Baltimore's biggest challenges. A VCL can be a nonprofit organization, for-profit social enterprise or government agency that hosts a Baltimore Corps Fellow for one year. The list of our current Visionary Cause Leaders can be found here.
How does Baltimore Corps choose which Visionary Cause Leaders to work with?
Baltimore Corps identifies promising, effective, purpose-driven leaders who are powerfully impacting our city from the ground up. We work with a range of early-stage, mid-stage, and established organizations. Baltimore Corps is passionate about identifying those leaders who are building and leading initiatives and organizations that tangibly and meaningfully improve the lives of city residents.
We have an online application for interested organizations to apply. In reality, most of the decision process takes place offline as we follow up with each applicant and have personalized discussions about all aspects of the Fellowship, and we are rigorous in identifying the organizations and roles in which a Baltimore Corps Fellow could generate the greatest impact.
What is the timeline?
Baltimore Corps Fellows commit to one year of full-time work, to begin in October. The Fellowship application opens in January and closes in mid-April. Fellows are typically accepted by mid-June.
The application for prospective Visionary Cause Leaders also opens in January and submissions are accepted through mid-April.
How many Fellowship applicants does Baltimore Corps accept?
The Baltimore Corps Fellowship is a highly selective program. For our second program year, we were able to accept less than 20% of applicants to the placement stage. Likewise, we could only partner with roughly 25 of the 80+ organizations that applied to be Visionary Cause Leaders.
Please do not let these numbers discourage you from applying. Though we cannot place every applicant within the Fellowship, we are currently piloting a new program that will allow us to offer ongoing support and facilitate connections to Baltimore employers for more candidates. Likewise with organizations, though we cannot place Fellows with all applicants every year, we hope to build relationships and find other ways to support your work throughout the city.
Does Baltimore Corps plan on expanding to other cities?
Eventually, we would like to expand the Baltimore Corps model to other cities, particularly other cities throughout the Rust Belt that possess challenges similar to Baltimore. However, that is a long-term ideal. For the foreseeable future, our plan is to fine tune the model and focus on having as great an impact as possible in Baltimore.
How is Baltimore Corps funded?
Baltimore Corps is funded through a combination of grants from foundations, donations from individual sponsors and small giving. Fellows’ stipends are funded by host Visionary Cause Leaders.
How can I donate to Baltimore Corps?
You can visit our donation page here.