Application Deadline: December 11th 2018
The Community College Initiative (CCI) is a U. S. Department of State exchange program for technical and vocational students from South Africa. The CCI program provides participants with a non-degree, academic-year program at a U.S. community college designed to build participants’ technical skills in applied fields, enhance their leadership capabilities, and strengthen their English language proficiency. Participants do not need to be current Technical, Vocational Education and Training (TVET) college or University of Technology students to apply, though they are welcome. The program runs on the U.S. academic calendar (August to May).
The CCI Program provides participants with a non-degree, one academic-year program at a U.S. community college designed to build participants’ technical skills in applied fields, enhance their leadership capabilities, and strengthen their English language proficiency. The program also provides opportunities for professional internships, service learning, and community engagement. After completing the program, participants return home with enhanced skills to help them contribute to the economic development of their countries.
Since the program’s inception in 2007, nearly 3,100 participants from 21 countries have received scholarships for study at community colleges throughout the United States.
The CCI Program demonstrates U.S. commitment to increasing access to higher education for international students from underrepresented and underserved communities in selected countries and highlights the learning environment offered at U.S. community colleges. The program also builds U.S. community colleges’ efforts to deepen international education partnerships and programming.
Fields of Study Summary
We are recruiting South African candidates for the CCI Program in the following fields:
- Applied Engineering
- Business Management/Admin
- Early Childhood Education
- Information Technology (IT)
- Public Safety
- Tourism and Hospitality Management
The CCI Program offerings within these fields of study are limited to specific concentration areas listed on the 2019-2020 CCI fields of study summaries and included as part of this application.
CCI Eligibility Requirements
Everyone who meets the CCI eligibility criteria listed below is welcome to apply regardless of race, color, national origin, sex, age, religion, geographic location, socio-economic status, disability (physical or mental), sexual orientation, or gender identity. Persons with disabilities are strongly encouraged to apply. Competition for the CCI Program is merit-based and open to anyone who:
- Is a citizen,or permanent resident qualified to hold a valid South African passport.
- Is currently residing in South Africa.
- Is 18 years or older by July 1, 2019.
- Has successfully earned a secondary school certificate – (Grade 12/Matric).
- Has not completed the equivalent of three years toward a U.S. bachelor’s degree or higher in the field of study the applicant is nominated to pursue. Nominees without substantive post-secondary education will be given placement priority.
- Has demonstrated commitment to the selected field of study through some academic or professional experience. The program aims to identify participants with proven skills or interest and limited professional experience in the fields of study offered.
- Has basic working knowledge of English language as demonstrated by a minimum TOEFL score of 400. (Note: To enroll in credit-bearing courses in an academic field of study, the applicant must meet the minimum language requirements of the host college—usually 500 on the TOEFL test or equivalent scores on other standardized tests.
- Has limited or no overseas study experience. Nominees with no prior overseas study or travel to the United States will be given placement priority.
- Meets any customized requirements of the home country Embassy/Consulate or Commission.
- Submits a complete original application.
- Is able to receive a U.S. J-1 visa and meet the program conditions to maintain that status.
- Is willing and physically able (with accommodations as required) to complete the program in its entirety, including activities or travel that may be programmed on any day of the week, possibly including early morning or evening hours.
- Is committed to returning to his/her home country after completion of the program and satisfying the J-visa two-year residency requirement.
- Is able to begin the academic exchange program in the United States in July 2019.
Financial Provisions of the Grant
- J-1 visa support.
- Round-trip travel from participant’s home city to host institution in the United States.
- Tuition and mandatory college fees.
- Housing and meals.
- Small allowance for books, materials, and incidental expenses.
- Limited Accident and Sickness coverage that is J-visa compliant.
- A variety of personal and professional development activities.
Application Review Process and Criteria
The CCI Program is conducted as a merit-based open competition. After the application deadline (December 11, 2018), all applications will be reviewed for eligibility and assessed by a panel of exchange program specialists. Competitive applicants will be interviewed by a nomination committee during the second half of January 2019. Should you not be invited to an interview by January 31 2019, please consider your application unsuccessful.
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