The Baltimore Corps Fellowship was founded on one simple principle: there should be better ways for the most talented people in the country to work on the nation's hardest problems. To that end, we recruit professionals from around the city, around the region, and around the country to work directly with the leaders doing the most impactful work in Baltimore. We place our Fellows with Visionary Cause Leaders in the nonprofit, public and private sectors to effect population-level change across many focus areas. Meet our current Fellows here.
Baltimore City has a wealth of visionary leaders who are solving complex problems. We have an outsized share of organizations already achieving nation-leading results on a neighborhood level. The challenge for many of these organizations is how they can expand their successful models to serve even more people, without sacrificing the high quality that defines them. Their primary barrier to positive growth isn't lack of funding. It isn't that their programs would be ineffective other locales. The primary barrier is talent: finding and developing the people with the commitment, passion and skills to lead. For some organizations, that means capacity builders. For others it means bringing on smart generalists, creative disruptors, or experts in highly specialized disciplines. Sometimes, organizations don't know who they need until he or she walks through the door.
Connecting Talent to Opportunity
There is not a lack of talent. We have incredibly gifted individuals in Baltimore, as well as people around the country who would love to work here, that are capable of moving the needle for our most vital organizations. We lack of a good way to connect talented job seekers to the places they will generate the most impact.
The Baltimore Corps Fellowship creates that infrastructure. As we build an extensive and diverse talent pool each year, we conduct a nation-wide recruitment campaign for organizations throughout Baltimore. Our expertise lies in identifying potential and our understanding of organizational needs across Baltimore puts us in a unique position to make fruitful connections. Potential Fellows gain access to that platform and have the chance to interview for roles they otherwise may not have had access to: roles that are highly likely to suit them, in organizations performing high-impact work. Organizations enjoy the benefit of interviewing from a highly curated talent pool and entering into a community of other change-making organizations.
We are sometimes likened to the HR function for Baltimore's impact sector. While we place a heavy focus on recruiting talented people for other organizations, that's only part of the story. Our ultimate goal is to build a collaborative leadership network in Baltimore that lasts for many years. We cultivate a strong community among Fellows and, outside of their placements, we invest heavily in the professional development of each Fellow and organize intensive programming throughout the year.
We design our program around three main axes that we have found to pay great dividends for growth and impact:
- Role Execution - or the ability to develop the necessary skills to perform at the highest professional level
- Network Building - or having the opportunity to build relationships with leaders and potential collaborators across Baltimore and beyond
- Leadership Development - or learning the tools to better mobilize resources, strategize around difficult challenges, adapt to uncertainties and to be more effective in a wide range of roles and scenarios
Role Execution – Our uncompromising commitment to generating collective impact in Baltimore depends on our Fellows’ ability to execute at a high level with their Visionary Cause Leaders. We provide ongoing support through the year to help them overcome the specific challenges they face, as well as position them for longterm professional growth.
- Professional Development Stipend: Each Fellow is guaranteed $500 to use for additional professional development throughout the year. Fellows have used their stipends to attend conferences, meet with specialized consultants, take classes and more.
- 360º Feedback: Each quarter, Fellows participate in a comprehensive review with their supervisors to review their performance, as well as to gauge their impact and growth in the workplace.
- Brain Trusts: Almost all Fellows will encounter difficult projects or dilemmas in the workplace. Luckily, our city has the brain power to help them. A Brain Trust is a highly structured 90-minute brainstorm with a diverse range of Baltimore’s best thinkers, who offer constructive feedback and advice regarding a specific issue a Fellow is facing in the workplace. We have found that these brief, high-intensity sessions connecting Fellows with other talented professionals often yield sophisticated plans of action, and a platform for longer term relationships.
Network Building – Within the Fellowship year and beyond, we are dedicated to supporting Fellows to make the connections that will allow them to reach their personal and professional goals.
- Volunteerism: We partner with Volunteering Untapped, and the entire cohort of Baltimore Corps Fellows volunteers for select events throughout the year, immersing into new areas of Baltimore through the lens of direct service, while meeting other professionals throughout the city.
- Community Conversations: On the first Monday of every month, we host a dinner featuring a prominent guest from the community to lead a candid conversation with Fellows. These conversations are an opportunity to trade insights in an intimate setting with some of Baltimore’s best and brightest. We have welcomed foundation presidents, founders of nonprofits, and even a former mayor of Baltimore to past Community Conversations.
- Salesforce Communities: Through the Salesforce Communities portal, Fellows connect with the other members of the cohort, start discussions, compile information about professional development opportunities, and share helpful material relating to their work. This is the hub of all resources and goings-on related to Baltimore Corps, and is customizable based on each cohort’s interests and needs.
- Fellow Retreats: In addition to Leadership Seminars (see below), Baltimore Corps facilitates a summer orientation and midyear retreat for Fellows to reflect and unwind.
Leadership Development – We dedicate programming to elevate Fellows from being talented individual contributors into more complete leaders of their communities.
- Results-Based Leadership Seminars: In partnership with the Annie E. Casey Foundation, Baltimore Corps facilitates two intensive seminars during the year that focus solely on developing Fellows' leadership skills.