Fellowship Overview 

The US-Brazil Connect Fellowship is designed for one outcome: to empower every single Fellow to unlock his or her potential as a global leader. Since 2012, over 600 emerging leaders from across the United States have built new skills, relationships and possibilities through our three-phase Fellowship program.

“I expected this fellowship to change my life, but I could have never imagined the impact it has had on my life, family, community, and our combined hopes for the future. US-Brazil Connect opened my mind to the world of human relations in the most beautiful, genuine, and optimistic manner.”

-US-Brazil Connect Fellow, 2015

About Each Phase of the Fellowship



Aimee, Giselle, Paola Peppers Hangout

The first phase of the Fellowship, “Learning”, takes place in the United States. For 12 weeks, we prepare Fellows with the foundation of conscious leadership: building relationships across cultures and leading an innovative exchange experience. Fellows also meet their team of 12 Brazilian students through structured virtual interaction via Facebook and Google Hangouts. Fellows participate in online Saturday training sessions combined with weekly assignments and an in-person weekend workshop. All Fellows commit 10 total hours per week to training, preparation, assignments, and interaction.



The second phase of the Fellowship, “Leading”, takes place in Brazil. Fellows and their Team Leaders travel to Brazil for 3 to 4 weeks to coach their team of Brazilian high school students in project-based learning and English immersion. They work with their Brazilian students for 4 to 6 hours per day, facilitating activities, conversations, and assemblies that spark self-reflection and cultivate global problem-solving skills. Fellows also spend 1-2 hours per day debriefing and planning with their US team.



The third phase of the Fellowship, “Leveraging”, occurs back in the United States. Our goal for this phase is to support Fellows as they bring their conscious leadership skills home to make contributions in their local communities, reintegrate back into the U.S., and create an expansive vision for their future. All Fellows engage in a “Pay-It- Forward” project, an initiative designed to take lessons from their experience and use them to create an innovative project unique to their interests and skills. In the past, these projects have ranged from documentary videos to community outreach. Additionally, Fellows are introduced to the US-Brazil Connect Alumni Board and encouraged to participate in programs and opportunities that advance our shared mission of building global leadership.


Who are our Fellows? 

All of our Fellows are emerging leaders who are committed to growing themselves. Since 2012, the majority of our Fellows have been community college and university students; however, we have also had some young professionals join. Our Fellows come from a diverse array of disciplines and backgrounds, but all are curious and committed to learning.

Building an Ecosystem of Support for Fellows 

Ecosystem_CoCreatedOur Fellows are part of a larger support ecosystem. US-Brazil Connect Fellows work directly with their Team Leaders, as well as the Brazilian Students.

Brazilian Students are between the ages of 14 and 19, and they are students within SESI, SENAI, or the public education systems. They have ranging experience interacting with non-Brazilians and/or applying English skills. Similar to the US-Brazil Connect Fellows, they come from diverse socioeconomic backgrounds.

Team Leaders lead teams of Fellows throughout the duration of the Fellowship, and actively participate in training Fellows. Team Leaders also work directly with our Brazilian Partners.

Our Brazilian Partners include the Brazilian Coordinators, as well industry leaders (Presidents and Executives) within SESI, SENAI, and CNI. The Brazilian Coordinators work with Central Staff and Team Leaders to ensure the success of the Conexão Mundo Program. They are the main contacts in the sites/cities in Brazil and they support the Brazilian students throughout all phases of the Conexão Mundo Program, including recruitment.

This network of support allows co-creation on all levels and ensures that our Fellows are successful in their role.

Fellows Qualifications 

  • Genuine interest in cross-cultural exchange: learning about Brazil and connecting with Brazilian high school students while sharing your own culture and life experiences.
  • Commitment to personal growth and developing skills in global leadership.
  • Commitment to serving as an online and in-person coach to Brazilian students.
  • Ability to consistently dedicate a minimum of 8 hours per week to the Fellowship in Phase I and Phase III (4 hours of direct coaching to students, 4 hours on Fellowship leadership development activities).
  • Willingness to commit at least 6-7 hours per day to the program in Phase II (includes time at the school and planning time/team meetings).
  • Ability to use online tools and social media platforms including Facebook, Google Hangout video chats, Google Drive, and other applications.
  • Comfortable leading small groups independently and facilitating group activities.
  • Ability to complete all aspects of training, including attending five Saturday meetings online and one in-person 3 day workshop before leaving for Brazil
  • Respectful of cultural diversity and eager for a cultural immersion experience.
  • Ability to work cooperatively in a team and maintain a positive attitude.
  • Possession of excellent reading, writing, and speaking skills in English.
  • Flexibility to live and work in Brazil for 3-4 weeks at an assigned site. Site assignments range from thriving urban centers to remote rural areas.
  • Ability to represent US-Brazil Connect to Brazilian institutional partners, Brazilian students, and the broader community during the Fellowship.

Qualities of a Successful Fellow 

We are looking for Fellows who will contribute to the success of their team. Characteristics of successful Fellows include:

  • Being a Creative Parter: This is not an experience to be ‘consumed.’ Candidates applying to the program should be ready to actively work, learn, reflect, give and grow throughout this experience. The true value of this experience can only be experienced when a fellow gives their time, energy and heart.
  • Resourceful: Fellows are flexible, adaptable, patient and ready to make the most of whatever challenges come their way.
  • Team-oriented: Fellows are able to focus on the goals of the team, collaborate effectively with other team members, and devote the effort necessary to achieve team success.
  • Reflective: Fellows are willing to share information, perceptions, and feedback openly while continually striving for growth.
  • Optimistic: Fellows believe that a better world is possible and seek to understand what role they can play in contributing to positive change.
  • Principled: Fellows possess maturity and the ability to commit to a goal larger than themselves.

Fellowship Support  

US-Brazil Connect’s Brazilian partners provide hotel lodging, transportation to and from the school, three meals a day, local health insurance and, upon program completion, a monetary completion award. US-Brazil Connect provides skilled team leaders, intensive training, and a curriculum framework. Fellows are responsible to cover the cost of their passport, roundtrip airfare, visa, required immunizations and any personal expenses.

Selection Process  

After applications have been reviewed, US-Brazil Connect’s Global Leader Fellowship interview panel will contact semi-finalists to set up an interview either in person or over Skype (location dependent).