Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) Fellows Program

Brief History and Mission of the Council for Higher Education Accreditation:

The Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) is a national voice promoting academic quality through accreditation. A nonprofit organization founded in 1996, CHEA is an association of degree-granting colleges and institutions and recognizes (that is, scrutinizes for quality) institutional and programmatic accrediting organizations. CHEA is a national leader in identifying and articulating emerging issues in accreditation and quality assurance, a national forum to address issues of interest and concern in accreditation through conferences, meetings and webinars and an authoritative source of data and information about accreditation and quality assurance

  • Description of the CHEA Fellows Program

The CHEA Fellows Program provides senior level graduate students with experiences in the field of higher education accreditation, including recognition processes for accrediting organizations, policy development, nonprofit Board oversight and operations, communications, business and finance and government affairs. These content areas of experience are valuable to graduate students who are seeking professional opportunities in higher education leadership, in government and/or with nonprofit organizations. Additionally, the CHEA Fellows program provides selected applicants with exposure to personnel and influencers in higher education, federal government and international partners.

Because the recognition process is a major part of CHEA’s mission, the selected Fellow(s) is required to complete at least 1/3 of the internship by participating in this area of concentration. The intern can select other areas and allocated times for remaining divisions of CHEA operations.

  • Description of Desired Applicant

The successful applicant must be at the senior level of their graduate studies and enrolled in an institution that is accredited by a CHEA-recognized accrediting organization and is a current CHEA institutional member. The applicant must also be in good academic standing and be endorsed for consideration by a senior level graduate advisor(s), preferably an advisor from the applicant’s graduate committee. Applicants must also be available to devote the necessary time to a quality experience; and commit to virtual and on-site engagements.
The selected Fellow(s) must demonstrate good oral and written communication skills and have the ability to work independently and with a team.  

  • Time, Location and On-Site Requirements

The number of required internship hours is dependent on the agreement between the Fellow’s degree requirements and CHEA operations. If there is not an internship degree requirement, the Fellow may propose the number of hours for engagement, with no more than 25 hours per week and no less than 75 total hours. Weekly internship hours average 20-25 hours per week combining on-site and virtual schedules.

The CHEA office is located One Dupont Circle NW, Suite 510, Washington, D. C. 20036. Applicants from the Washington, DC, Virginia and Maryland areas are encouraged to apply. 

  • Description of Potential Benefits Associated with Being a CHEA Fellow

Recognition as a CHEA Fellow

Professional development, working with distinguished experts in nonprofit organizations

Active participation in national and international webinars

Opportunity to author an op-ed posted on the CHEA website

Certificate of Internship completion

Evaluation of experiences sent to the university advisor

CHEA’s endorsement for job placement (if applicable)

  • Application Process

Applicants must complete and return the CHEA Fellows Program application. Incomplete applications will not be considered. Those considered for the program will participate in a virtual interview with members of the CHEA staff. Successful applicants will be notified at least one month prior to commencement of their Fellowship. Although this is an unpaid internship, CHEA Fellows are eligible for a stipend to assist with expenses.

  • Notification from CHEA Responding to Applications

All applicants will receive notification from CHEA upon receipt of their application and following final consideration of the application.