Funding your master's education and gaining practical experience

The following awards and fellowships are available to help current International Development students achieve their academic and professional goals by offsetting associated financial costs.

Fellowship Opportunities

For applications and requirements for the following opportunities, please contact the ID Program Coordinator at

The Tinker-Walker Fellowship provides funding support to current students pursuing research projects (including SRP and thesis research), practica, and internships. This fellowship is named in honor of Drs. Irene Tinker and Millidge Walker, former members of the International Development faculty whose generous support has helped make the ID program possible.

Students have used this fellowship to work with organizations like the World Health Organization, Population Services International, and BRAC, and have traveled to countries such as Cambodia, Brazil, Liberia, and Armenia. 

This annual award provides tuition support to a student who has completed their first year of study in the International Development or Development Management program. The two main criteria are academic excellence and a record of effective and active service to outside communities and/or relevant student organizations. This award is given in memory of former faculty member Walter Sherwin, who spent his entire career working to improve the lives of people around the world through international development projects. It was started in 2006 by his wife, Kitty Sherwin, his two children, Mark and Jennifer, and his sister, Sue Byrd. 

The Steven Arnold Innovative Small Grant Fund provides students in the International Development and Development Management programs with small grants for an innovative idea that is helpful to communities, to the student’s professional development, to the International Development program, and/or the field of development as a whole. This fund is named after Steven Arnold, the "father" of the International Development program. He was a co-founder of the program, and for many years its sole director. ID alumni and faculty created this fellowship in his name.

This award is named after Dr. Leon E. Clark, one of American University’s earliest and most prominent International Development leaders. In the spirit of Dr. Clark’s legacy and commitment to intercultural understanding, the Leon E. Clark Fellowship supports students pursuing a substantial research project, practicum, or independent research on development issues with a “cultural” lens. Each year, the fellowship finances independent study projects (such as a capstone or summer research project) on the general theme of culture and development. In addition to kind gifts from his friends, colleagues, and students, his wife, Dr. Maria Donoso Clark, has made a very generous gift to celebrate Leon and his ideals and contributions.

The David Hirschmann Award is distributed annually to a second-year student from a developing country who has achieved an excellent academic record and demonstrated a commitment to community service. The fellowship provides funding to be used for spring semester tuition. This fellowship honors the life and legacy of the late David Hirschmann, who served on the faculty of the International Development program for more than 30 years and was its director for 11. Funds for the fellowship were raised by the ID Alumni Board as well as ID alumni and faculty.