Clarke DS Fellowship provides academic funding for a master’s degree while preparing students to enter the Foreign Service as a Diplomatic Security Service Special Agent.

Washington (July 18, 2023) — The  U.S. Department of State is accepting applications for the 2024 cohort of the William D. Clarke, Sr. Diplomatic Security (Clarke DS) Fellowship through October 1, 2023.

This two-year graduate fellowship, one of several high-profile U.S. Department of State diversity recruitment programs, is designed for individuals who want to pursue a master’s degree and a career as a Diplomatic Security Service (DSS) Special Agent in the Foreign Service.

Funded by the U.S. Department of State and administered by The Washington Center for Internships and Academic Seminars (TWC), the Clarke DS Fellowship provides:

  • Up to $42,000 annually (for two years) in academic funding for tuition, room and board, mandatory fees, and some travel expenses.
  • Two summer practicums (one in Washington, D.C. with the Diplomatic Security Service, one overseas at a U. S. embassy or consulate).
  • Personalized mentoring and professional development opportunities throughout the program.

Upon successful completion of the fellowship program and Foreign Service entry requirements, Clarke DS Fellows receive an appointment as a Foreign Service Diplomatic Security Service (DSS) Special Agent. DSS Special Agents are sworn federal law enforcement officers, responsible for the security of Foreign Service personnel, property, and sensitive information around the world.

The Clarke DS Fellowship aims to attract qualified candidates to the Diplomatic Security Service who represent ethnic, racial, gender, social, and geographic diversity. Women, members of minority groups underrepresented in the Foreign Service, and those with financial need, are encouraged to apply.

“The Clarke DS Fellowship represents a unique opportunity for individuals who have a passion for public service and protecting U.S. diplomacy around the world,” says Kim Churches, president of TWC. “We’re excited to partner with the U.S. Department of State on its goal to recruit qualified candidates representing the diversity of the United States.”

Applications for the 2024 cohort are being accepted from candidates who plan to enter a two-year, full-time master’s degree program at a U.S.-based accredited institution in fall 2024. Candidates must:

  • Be a U.S. citizen.
  • Be at least 19 years old and no older than 32 years old (except for preference-eligible veterans).
  • Be on a timeline to graduate with master’s degree in spring 2026 while enrolled full-time for fall and spring semesters (starting fall 2024).
  • Hold a minimum 3.2 GPA on a 4.0 scale at the time of application and maintain this GPA throughout the program.
  • Have a valid driver’s license if selected as a finalist for the fellowship.

More information about eligibility requirements, benefits, and how to apply can be found at


About The Washington Center for Internships and Academic Seminars
The Washington Center creates flexible, immersive pathways to enhance the pipeline of diverse talent that build more equitable, inclusive workplaces and communities. Since our founding, we’ve helped more than 60,000 young people translate their college majors into career paths. We use our scale and expertise to customize each learner’s experience to be truly transformative.

About the U.S. Department of State
The Department of State’s mission is to protect and promote U.S. security, prosperity, and democratic values and shape an international environment in which all Americans can thrive. The Department’s workforce includes some 13,000 members of the Foreign Service, 11,000 Civil Service employees, and 45,000 locally employed staff at more than 270 diplomatic missions worldwide.