Julian Fellerman - Headshot“After working for three years behind a desk, I began to feel a significant disconnect between the numbers and graphs I was manipulating on my computer screen and the human beings and their livelihoods that those analyses were seeking to represent. I wanted to get closer to the person at the end of the enormous machinery that is global philanthropy. Along with satisfying my longtime curiosity towards microfinance, I was able to gain a deeper perspective on the lives of borrowers through a four month fellowship working with Kiva in Nicaragua. Along with seeing the ins and outs of the MFI business model up close I traversed the country meeting and interviewing over 30 clients about their experience with microloans. Through these interviews I was afforded a very intimate view into the lives of those who benefit most from microfinance. If you’re looking to richen your perspective on the human condition, immerse yourself in a fascinating area of international development, all the while experiencing another culture (and food!) unlike your own, the Kiva Fellows Program is for you.”

– Julian Fellerman, KF28

Headshot - Susan Lee“As a lender, I always thought of Kiva as a charity, it appealed to my altruistic streak but I loved that I had the power to choose where my money went, and it came back! Being a Fellow as opened my eyes to Kiva being so much more. The ‘tech teams’ you meet at training, all the new products Kiva are developing, the opportunity to meet so many like minded individuals all wanting to work for a greater good. Being in the field as a Fellow will give you an insider’s perspective, allowing you to meet and see first hand how Kiva works and it is impacting the faces you see on the website. No matter what your personal objectives for applying, you will gain a unique experience and come away having met many new people, made friends and know yourself in a new and different way. Just go for it!”

– Susan Lee, KF25 & KF26

philip“Being a Fellow was an amazingly rewarding experience. If you’re ready to work hard, take risks, and be sociable, the Fellowship will be one of the most stimulating, fun, and educational periods of your life. For those worried about the expenses, view it as an investment into your professional and personal future. It’s well worth it.”

– Philip Issa, KF17 & KF18
peter“I was both excited and intimidated at the prospect of becoming a Kiva Fellow. I wasn’t sure if I could communicate effectively in Spanish, I didn’t feel confident in the world of microfinance. But what I learned after just a few days that just by being myself and taking time to learn as much as possible — that I was prepared. I had great training, the support of Kiva staff, the on-line resources, and the network of my fellow Fellows in the field to back me up. It was a richly rewarding experience for me with unique opportunities: to live in a substantially different culture, to travel with purpose, to meet people I would never meet normally, and to learn and share with my colleagues in the field. Work hard, be yourself, be honest and patient, and smile a lot to win hearts… you will make a difference as a Kiva Fellow and grow in ways unimagined.”

– Peter Soley, KF19