SEE’s Independent Professional (INP) initiative supports collaboration among U.S. and Russian social experts across a wide range of thematic areas. Currently, SEE is accepting projects that focus on Arctic and Environmental Conservation, Indigenous Peoples’ Empowerment, Disability and Inclusion, Public Health, or projects under Open Thematic Area. Past participants have worked to:
- Reduce violence against women in Seattle and Samara;
- Increase the capacity of mentors in Tyumen, Los Angeles, and Phoenix;
- Launch an educational course on volunteer fundraising in Richmond and Moscow; and
- Many more projects in the U.S. and Russia!
Selected INPs will collaborate with a host organization, which would include a virtual exchange during the first two months of the fellowship, followed by an in-person visit to the host country (Russia or the U.S.) lasting up to two weeks as soon as travel becomes possible. SEE will match prospective candidates with host organizations paying close attention to making sure that the participant’s involvement with a particular host organization contributes in a meaningful way to the realization of their proposed projects and development of new skills and knowledge. Upon their return home, independent professionals implement activities to convey and apply their new knowledge and expertise for the benefit of their colleagues and local communities.
The INP initiative offers a unique opportunity for applicants to expand their professional networks and gain international perspectives on their social projects.
Host a Fellow
A crucial part of making INP Fellowship a successful initiative are the wonderful host organizations we partner with. Host sites represent a diverse range of non-profit, non-governmental, and other organizations in the U.S. and Russia that focus on social issues and collaborate with SEE fellows for a period of up to two weeks.
We are always looking to partner with great social sector organizations that can share U.S. best practices in their professional field with our fellows and provide them with a place to thrive. As a host organization, you would collaborate with a fellow online during the first two months of their fellowship in the fall of 2021 as well as host the fellow for up to two weeks once international travel becomes possible. Our staff will work with you on selecting the best time frame for the fellow’s visit to your organization. For each fellow’s in-person visit, SEE takes care of all logistics such as flights, accommodation, health coverage, visa, etc. There is no cost to interview or consider candidates.
Hosting a SEE fellow presents an excellent opportunity to spark new ideas at your organization, encourage innovation, and forge fruitful, international bonds. Your organization would benefit from this partnership in the following ways:
- Gain insights from a Russian professional in your industry who will share their sector-specific skills and expertise
- Expand your professional networks domestically and internationally
- Discover international perspectives on your work and sector as a whole
- Engage in a collaborative effort that may lead to long-term partnerships and new international projects
- Receive a set amount of hosting compensation per fellow for a given fellowship round term
To express your interest in hosting a SEE fellow, please fill out our interest form linked below. After receiving your interest form, we will add your organization to our database of potential host organizations. From there, we will reach out if a fellow with a matching professional area of interest applies for our program and work to connect you. Once your team has reviewed candidate bios, you will have an opportunity to interview the fellow(s) and weigh in on whether you would like to officially host them. Interested organizations are encouraged to apply by Monday, July 26 so we can match them with the best candidates.
Increasing Access to Physical Education and Camp
One past SEE fellow from Russia collaborated with US professionals from California to learn best practices regarding adaptive physical education and special/inclusive camp management and, over the course of her fellowship, developed this inclusive camp manual with the intention of reaching more than 300 beneficiaries in Russia.
Advocating (and Mapping) for People with Disabilities
Another past SEE fellow from Russia, collaborating with US professionals in the field of inclusion, focused her efforts on advocating for the rights of people with disabilities and expanding access to inclusive places and services for families with children with disabilities in her Western Russian city. As part of these efforts, the fellow created an engaging, user-friendly inclusive map listing cultural locations and services and their accessible features in her city, intending to reach at least 80 beneficiaries.
Inspiring a Generation of Environmental Stewards
A past SEE fellow from Russia’s Lake Baikal region worked with US conservation practitioners and professionals in the sphere of environmental education to enhance her understanding of environmental education best practices. During her fellowship, she produced a hands-on workbook dedicated to teaching children the importance of forest and ecosystem stewardship, reaching more than 120 students.
Information about new fellows and projects for 2021 program year will be updated once the selection process for the current round of independent professionals is complete.