The Global Gap Year Fellowship seeks diverse applicants who are curious about the world and committed to public service as global citizens. We strongly encourage individuals to apply who would not otherwise have the means to take a Gap Year. Applicants should:

    • Be high school seniors who apply for admission at UNC-Chapel Hill by the Early Action deadline
    • Possess intellectual curiosity
    • Have an appetite for experiential learning
    • Demonstrate creativity and resourcefulness
    • Be open to new experiences abroad (previous international experience is not required)
    • Note that if you were born after December 31, 2002 you are not eligible to apply for the Global Gap Year Fellowship. (Students must be 18 years of age when they leave the country)

Apply Now!- Deadline extended to March 14, 2020 12 pm.

The application for the 2020-2021 class of Global Gap Year Fellows is now open! Apply here.

Here is a word doc version of the 2020-2021 application in case you want to work on the essays ahead of time.

Please note the following requirements:

  1. You must submit a one-page/one-sided resume.
  2. Your guidance counselor must submit a short, online form to us endorsing you for our program. (Please send your counselor this link:
  3. You must also request a 1-page letter of recommendation from someone who has supervised you in an educational, professional, or community service environment, It is important to share information about the Global Gap Year Fellowship with your recommender, so that they have a better understanding of the demands of the program.  (Please send your recommender this link

If you have any questions, please reach out to us at

Application Process & Timeline

Each year, applicants apply online through a Qualtrics survey. Applications are then reviewed by a team of UNC faculty and students. Selected applicants are chosen as Semi-Finalists and invited to participate in a Skype interview. Next, Finalists are selected and invited to UNC for the Global Gap Year Fellowship Finalist Weekend, during which they stay near UNC’s campus, attend workshops on ethical service and are interviewed by the selection committee. Finalists are notified about their acceptance to the Fellowship shortly after Finalist Weekend.

For questions concerning the application process, please view the Timeline below or visit our FAQ Page.

The dates below are for the 2020 application cycle. If you have specific questions regarding the application process, please email

October 15: Apply for undergraduate admission to UNC-Chapel Hill through the Common Application. Note that only students who apply Early Action and are admitted are eligible to apply for the GGYF.

February 1: Application for the Global Gap Year Fellowship 2020-2021 class opens!

February 29: Deadline to apply for the 2020-2021 Global Gap Year Fellowship Cohort.

March 14: Deadline extended! Applications due by 12 pm.

April 3-5: Finalists come to UNC to participate in Finalists Weekend.

April 10: Finalists for the Global Gap Year Fellowship 2020-2021 cohort are notified and must accept their offer by May 1.

Summer 2020: Selected Global Gap Year fellows spend two weeks at UNC learning about global engagement and preparing for their time abroad.


The GGYF cohort of 2017-2018 pose at the Old Well during the Summer Institute at Carolina.