Applications for the 2020 class of Millennium Fellows are now CLOSED. Please check back this fall for the opening of the 2021 Millennium Fellowship Applications


Join a global network of exceptional peers and build life-long relationships through executive retreats and informal events.

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Meet world leaders and senior experts at flagship Atlantic Council events around the world.

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Go behind the headlines with study tours to regions on the frontlines of key global trends and learn from top experts through dynamic Master Class sessions.

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Lead the debate with opportunities to speak, publish, and collaborate.

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Applications for the 2020 class of Millennium Fellows are now CLOSED.

Millennium Fellowship
The Millennium Fellowship is open to rising leaders and innovators around the world committed to achieving transformational change in their communities, countries, and professional fields with a global impact. Fellows will be at the forefront of the Atlantic Council’s work to promote constructive leadership and create a more secure and prosperous world. Through a competitive application process, the Atlantic Council will accept approximately twenty exceptional leaders who are thirty-five years old and under into each new class of Millennium Fellows.

The Millennium Fellowship is a two-year part-time program requiring three weeks of in-person activities and eight hours of virtual activities and distance learning, supplemented by independent fellow-to-fellow work and optional events that take place around the world and throughout the year. Throughout the fellowship and beyond, fellows will join a global network of outstanding peers, have unparalleled opportunities to meet with world leaders at flagship Atlantic Council events, go behind the headlines to discover issues at the cutting-edge of key global trends, and lead the debate on the issues that will shape the 21st century. For details about fellowship structure and time commitments, visit the About the Fellowship page.

Application Process
The fellowship is a highly competitive program, with hundreds of applications each cycle for approximately twenty fellowship spots. The application process includes reviews by senior Council experts from different programs and centers and interviews with finalists. The entire review process typically takes 7-9 weeks.

Millennium Fellowship Dues
The fellowship program does include annual dues – $1450 for members of the private sector, and $950 for members of the public, academic, and non-profit sectors. Dues cover all flights, lodging, and group meals for both trips during the first year (an estimated total cost of more than $10,000 per fellow). The Council offers a limited number of subsidies to cover part or all of the dues for fellows with demonstrated financial need.


Fellows have unique opportunities to participate in high-level global events, held in different cities each year, where they hear from and meet with experts and senior leaders. The events generally focus on one or two core themes—such as energy, security, foreign policy, democracy, or economic issues—allowing fellows to broaden their understanding of global trends and challenges that will shape the 21st century both within and outside of their main areas of expertise.


Brussels NATO Summit (July 11-12, 2018)

On July 11-12, 2018, the world watched as heads of state, military leaders, and top diplomats gathered at the NATO Summit in Brussels, Belgium. The Atlantic Council, alongside a consortium of partners, organized a high-level gathering inside the security perimeter for the official heads of state event, offering Millennium Fellows unparalleled opportunities to directly engage participating Alliance leaders, share the stage with top experts, and connect with a broader community from across the Alliance. Fellows provided critical perspectives from a range of sectors beyond traditional defense and security to inform how NATO might adapt to a future that is more interdisciplinary, complex, and uncertain while becoming immersed in the challenges and opportunities NATO faces in the 21st century.

Atlantic Council Global Energy Forum (January 2018)

The Atlantic Council Global Energy Forum in Abu Dhabi is the premier international gathering of government, industry, and thought leaders to set the global energy agenda for the year and anticipate and respond to the dramatic changes in the world of energy. Convened in partnership with the Ministry of Energy of the United Arab Emirates, ADNOC, and Mubadala, the forum precedes the World Future Energy Summit and Abu Dhabi Sustainability week.

MiSK Global Forum (November 2017)

The Forum is the flagship global platform of the MiSK Foundation, the non-profit philanthropic foundation established by Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman to discover, develop and empower Saudi youth to become active participants in the knowledge economy.

Young people are coming of age in a world that is more connected and more fundamentally changing than at any other time in human history. The fourth industrial revolution of transformative technologies is disrupting economies and will affect the way we live, learn, work, and contribute to our communities. It is not enough to merely adapt to these developments. They must be harnessed to deliver new frameworks for how our societies and working lives are structured and new opportunities are shaped. Young people will have to be committed to this process of constant change and embrace the opportunities that it will bring.

The 2017 gathering looked across the spectrum of challenges in this change, unearthing the wealth of opportunities that exist within each, covering:

  1. Living: From good health and wellbeing, and new entertainment, what will it take to lead the good life over the long term?
  2. Learning: When change is constant, how best to integrate the right learning subjects and practices to achieve success?
  3. Working: In the age of intelligent machines, what will this mean for how businesses and people organize?
  4. Contributing: How can people use their communities to deliver wider and more sustained positive impacts?

Tipping Points: Climate Change and the Global Energy Transition (June 2017)

2017 Millennium Fellows met for the first time this summer in Washington, DC, joining 2015 and 2016 fellows for a week of programming anchored by the Council’s Tipping Points conference. Climate Change is one of the greatest global challenges the Millennial generation will inherit, with far-reaching consequences that have the potential to impact almost every aspect of human life from national security to economic development to global migration. At the same time, advances in technology, the energy industry, scientific understanding, and public policy present not only potential solutions to climate change but also exciting visions for the future of how we live, work, and interact.

Tipping Points is a forum to learn about cutting-edge developments from energy pioneers; debate on how governments, companies, and individuals should respond to climate change; and inspire action. Designed to engage fellows with limited energy expertise as well as those working in the energy field, the conference will include topics such as the future of transportation; water, climate, and resiliency; carbon markets; the next breakthrough in renewable technology; international climate efforts; and the energy-security nexus. During this trip, Millennium Fellows participated in an offsite leadership retreat, executive-level Master Class sessions, and a local study tour exploring America after the 2016 elections.

Warsaw NATO Summit (July 2016)

Millennium Fellows traveled to Warsaw, Poland in July 2016 to meet senior leaders and shape the public debate around the 2016 NATO Summit, attended by more than fifty heads of state. Fellows shared the stage with senior leaders and delivered TED Talks-style presentations on the nexus of security, business, technology, and migration at the Atlantic Council’s Security Beyond Defense conference, chaired by former US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, former Swedish Prime Minister Carl Bildt, and Polish-American Freedom Foundation President Jerzy Koźmiński. After the conference, fellows joined experts from around the world at a forum inside the NATO Summit venue on the future of the Alliance and security challenges. The trip closed with a private leadership retreat for fellows.


Throughout the program, fellows have unique opportunities to deepen their substantive knowledge and hone leadership skills. During the first year of the program, Millennium Fellows participate in a study tour that takes them behind and beyond the headlines to see transitions and trends in action in a key region of the world. Through core programming and other events, fellows also have opportunities to learn directly from leading experts in a variety of fields—such as communications, negotiations, film, and demography—through Master Class sessions.


Aegean Study Tour (July 2-10, 2018)

Fellows traveled to Turkey and Greece, the front lines of the largest humanitarian crisis to sweep the globe since the end of WWII, to explore the migrant crisis and its layered implications for international cooperation and security. Specifically, the tour examined the complex dynamics linking the situation on the ground to the international community’s response and offered a window into the perspectives of government officials, business leaders, NGOs, and the refugees themselves through a range of hands-on site visits and meetings with key stakeholders.

West Virginia Study Tour (June 2017)

Fellows traveled to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and Morgantown, West Virginia, to explore the relationship between the energy sector, climate policy, and the 2016 US election. In meetings with local experts in energy and sustainable development, business leaders, academics, and individuals most directly impacted by the changing energy landscape and national environmental policy, fellows examined the relationship between the energy sector and voting patterns, partisanship in industrial communities, and the role of traditional energy sources in the age of renewables.

Sarajevo Study Tour (July 2016) 

Twenty-five years after conflict broke out in the former Yugoslavia, fellows traveled to Sarajevo, Bosnia to explore lessons from the conflict and learn about the current security, economic, and political situations in Bosnia and the Western Balkans. On the eve of the NATO Summit, fellows looked at the case study of Operation Deliberate Force, NATO’s first combat operation launched after the Srebrenica massacre. Meeting with members of parliament, artists and journalists who lived through and covered the war, senior international officials, historians, activists, and local entrepreneurs, fellows examined the causes that led to war, the role of the international community in the conflict and peace process, and the challenges to “winning the peace” after fighting ended.

Kyiv Study Tour (November 2015)

Fellows traveled to Kyiv, Ukraine for the two-year anniversary of the Euromaidan protests, meeting with the civic society activists who launched the revolution of dignity and lead calls for transformational change, defense officials confronting Russia’s war in Ukraine’s east, young entrepreneurs seeking to fuel Ukraine’s economy, and top government executives overseeing unprecedented reforms, including Finance Minister Natalie Jaresko, Trade and Development Minister Aivaras Abromavičius, and Parliament Foreign Affairs Committee Head Hanna Hopko.


Storytelling with Impact: Behind the Scenes
Academy Award®-winning documentary producer and director Gerardine Wurzburg and National Geographic filmmaker Jennifer Shoemaker take fellows behind the camera to share lessons and experiences in using film to tell a story and inspire support for a cause.

Communications Strategies for Compelling People
Is it better to be feared or loved? KNP Communications trainers Matthew Kohut and Christian Dorsey explore the theme raised by Machiavelli through an interactive workshop that helps fellows hone their ability to connect with an audience and inspire confidence through projecting the two most important characteristics—strength and warmth.

How to Detect Deception
We encounter lies between 10-200 times a day, some harmless and some costly. Bestselling author and leading expert on lie-detection Pamela Meyer arms fellows with tools for negotiating, selling, protecting, and interviewing in a world that faces an epidemic of deception.

How Millennials Are Changing the World: Global Demographic Trends
What separates Millennials from past generations and how are they shaping their world? Neil Howe, the acclaimed historian, demographer, and economist who coined the term “Millennial Generation,” presents the data and talks with fellows about how this generation is interacting with others to impact society and business.


The Millennium Fellowship provides a platform for fellows to lead the debate on key global issues, through opportunities to speak, publish, and collaborate.

The Atlantic Council features Millennium Fellows as speakers at flagship events and programming throughout the year. Fellows have led, moderated, and spoken on panels at the Council’s Global Strategy Forum, Istanbul Energy and Economic Summit, and NATO Future Leaders Summit, among other events, joining world leaders, CEOs, and senior experts on stage.

Fellows have opportunities to submit posts to the Council’s premier New Atlanticist blog, along with the Council’s other issue- and region-focused blogs (note: Council editors retain final approval of what is published). In addition, the Council works with fellows to support media interviews and publishing opportunities in international media outlets and highlight fellow-arranged media appearances. See In the News for recent media appearances by fellows.

The fellowship serves as an open door to the Atlantic Council’s community, with opportunities to collaborate with staff and experts at the Council’s ten regional and thematic centers, and seeks to foster organic collaboration and partnerships among fellows throughout the program and beyond. In both cases, we hope the fellowship begins life-long relationships with the Atlantic Council and with peers from around the world that will yield long-term impact.


Millennium Fellowship Partners:

Corporate Partners:

Advisory Council Partners: