Frequently
Asked Questions

Eligibility

Q:  I am not a designer. Am I eligible for the Loeb Fellowship?

A: We have a broad definition of who is working to improve the built and natural environment and whose work has a broad social impact.  We have had a theater director, public artists, journalists, a documentary filmmaker, as well as architects, landscape architects and urban planners. If you are unsure about your eligibility, feel free to contact the program.

Q:  I am applying to the GSD as a student. Is your Fellowship available to students?

A:  No, it is for practitioners who have a minimum of 5 to 10 years of working experience.

Q:  I am an academic and will have a sabbatical next year. Am I eligible to apply for the Fellowship?

A:  Typically no, we are a program for practitioners. If at least 50% of your time is involved in practice and if you meet other requirements, you might be eligible. If you are not sure, feel free to contact the program.

 


Fellows’ Obligations

Q:  What will be expected of me as a Fellow?

A:  Fellows must agree to step away from any significant roles with their employers and other professional responsibilities–like speaking engagements or conferences–during the Fellowship year. A fellow must audit a minimum of one course at the GSD per semester. Fellows also must remain in residence in the Cambridge area while classes are in session and participate in all Fellowship programs.

Fellows are expected to participate in planning and attending a weekly seminar with the curator and weekly dinners with invited guests. They are expected to accompany their group for the fall and spring study tours, retreats and other activities organized by the curator and staff.

Fellows are also expected to engage with students and faculty, participate in the life of the GSD, and in general take advantage of the resources Harvard University and MIT have to offer.

Q:  How will my schedule be determined?

A:  Each Fellow develops an individual work plan with input from the program staff. The plan is periodically updated during the year. At the end of the year a summary of the results of your work plan will be included in the final program report.


Application Questions

Q. How do I apply?

A. Read our guidelines and instructions first, then apply through SlideRoom.

Q. What is the deadline for submitting an application?

A. The deadline for submitting applications for the 2021-22 Fellowship via SlideRoom was January 11, 2021 at 11:59 PM ET.

Q: I am having a problem with the SlideRoom application.

A: Consult SlideRoom Help to ask for assistance. This should be the first place to seek help with any technical questions. SlideRoom is very responsive.

Q. I have supplemental materials that are not possible to upload to SlideRoom. What should I do?

A: Please contact the Loeb Fellowship office at loeb_fellowship@gsd.harvard.edu.

Q: Is there an application fee?

A: Yes, the fee is $45.00 and is paid at the end of the process when you are ready to submit the application.

Q: The system would not accept my payment? What should I do?

A: Contact SlideRoom Help, and they will provide instructions on an alternative method for payment.

Q: Should I submit an academic transcript?

A: No, we do not review academic transcripts.


Recommendations

Q. What is the deadline for recommendations?

A: Recommendations are due on the same date that applications are due.

Q. Do you have suggestions about whom to ask for a recommendation?

A: Ask people who have worked with you, have a variety of perspectives, and can speak substantively about you and your work.

Q: Should I get an academic reference?

A: We are primarily interested in candidates for their accomplishments in practice. This is not an academic fellowship. References from academics may be appropriate if they are providing insight into your work as a practitioner.

Q: I entered the names and contacts of my references into SlideRoom but they have not been contacted for a reference.

A: The SlideRoom system sends a request to your recommender once you enter them into the system. Sometimes these messages go into a spam box. Alert your recommender to look for a message from SlideRoom. The request will not come from the Loeb Fellowship. If this continues to be a problem consult Slideroom Help.

Q. I am concerned that my recommenders will not get their letters in by the deadline. What should I do?

A. We encourage you to stay in contact with your recommenders to ensure they comply with our deadlines. You can enter their names into the SlideRoom system anytime. You do not need to complete the entire application process for the letters to be sent to your recommenders. Once the names and contact information is submitted to your recommender they will be contacted even if you have NOT completed the entire application. If you believe a reference will not submit a recommendation in time to meet the deadline, you may go back into your SlideRoom application and substitute another recommender.


Fellows with Families

Q: I have a family. Is it possible for them to be with me during the Fellowship year?

A: Yes, our resources enable us to support families of modest size, and many fellows bring their families. We find most family members enjoy the experience and benefit from the opportunities of Harvard and Cambridge.

Q: How does the program work if we bring school aged children?

A: The Cambridge Public Schools are accustomed to having graduate students and scholars with children. The schools have a lottery system for school selection. You should consult the Cambridge Public Schools website for additional information.


Important Dates

Q:  When does the Fellowship year begin?

A:  Fellows arrive in mid-August, a week before classes start in August. We have an orientation period of about 3 to 4 days, prior to the start of classes, and it is good to allow a little time to settle in. The exact dates depend upon the academic calendar in a given year.

Q:  When does the program year end?

A:  The program officially ends the day after commencement. However some people, especially families with children in the schools, stay through the end of the school year, which is typically the second or third week in June. You must leave your housing by June 30th at the latest.


After the Fellowship Year

Q:  What happens after the program year ends?

A:  The Loeb Fellowship is a lifelong connection. When a Fellow completes the Fellowship year, he or she joins over 450 alumni in an unparalleled worldwide network of professional colleagues. Fellows are alumni of the Graduate School of Design as well as the Loeb Fellowship and may participate in the GSD alumni community and events.


And finally,

Q: I’m still not sure if the Fellowship is right for me or if I’m right for the Fellowship. Is there someone who can advise me?

A: We now offer the opportunity for interested applicants to connect with Loeb alumni for consultation about the Fellowship and the alumni experience. This optional program is intended for candidates who want to get to know the Loeb Fellowship program and its impact, but who do not already have a connection to the Loeb Fellowship or the GSD. Learn more here.