AFWERX Fellowship

Target Audience
  • USAF & USSF Active Duty/Reserve/Guard, USAF & USSF Government Civilian
  • USAF Reserve/Guard (unit must provide man-days)
Apply Now!
Important dates
  • Applications for 22-1 are due by 3 Jan
  • Fellowship dates: 10 Jan 22 - 1 Jun 22


During this five-month cohort (22-1), you’ll gain insight into AFWERX capabilities, share your expertise with us and explore how we can work together to get after Space Force and Air Force challenges. This is a FULL TIME Fellowship and will require commander/supervisor permission.

To develop the workforce we need for our future, it is imperative that we expand and grow our collective knowledge and influencer networks, and uncover pathways to resources that enable us to keep pace in an environment where change is unyielding. General Brown has called upon all Total Force Airmen to prioritize speed of delivery and foster a culture of courageous problem-solvers through collaboration and diversity of thought, approach and solution execution for current and future operations. The AFWERX Fellowship is one small step in execution of the CSAF’s vision.

This fellowship relies heavily on experiential training, so you will be virtually-tied to one of our teams: Spark, AFVentures, Prime and SpaceWERX.

The division that empowers innovators and accelerates results through programs that connect, develop and support Airmen and Guardian innovators - e.g. base-level Spark Cells, MAJCOM Innovation Cells, Industry Colliders, Internships, Fellowships, Innovation Training, Spark Tank, Spark Incubator and more!

The division that creates simple pathways for commercial innovators and private capital investment to help solve problems for the Department of the Air Force.

The division developing technology marketplaces, helping identify new prime technology sectors in the commercial space, energy, autonomy, analytics and wargaming, supersonics, microelectronics, etc.

Agility Prime is the division expanding technology paths to accelerate emerging dual-use markets by leveraging government resources for rapid and affordable fielding.

The division that inspires and empowers collaboration with innovators to accelerate capabilities and shape our future in space.


Yes, we require a commitment of 40 hours/week.
No, the owning unit for the applicant must provide the man-days for participation.

It is imperative that you get permission from your Commander to participate.  The application will ask you if you talked to your supervisor and you will need to provide their name and contact information and you will be required in the application to state if selected, your supervisor will be required to sign a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA).  

No, this is a virtual fellowship. However, there could be an occasional TDY to participate in AFWERX events, and the cost will be covered by AFWERX.
Embed with your AFWERX team. Participate in training, workshops and feedback sessions as scheduled. Complete monthly surveys used to improve program. Have fun, think big and network!
The experiential training will give you insight into AFWERX innovation processes and tools. In addition, you will develop your network of like-minded intrapreneurs. You'll return to your organization able to help drive innovation to solve unit issues.
You will select the team you wish to work with. If selected that team leader will work with you to develop your assignment. In some cases you may be offered an assignment on another team and decide if that is something you would like to do.

AFVentures Fellowship

Technology can change anything. Even how we protect our country. Immerse in leading technology firms to bring innovative solutions back to the Department of Defense.

This fellowship provides opportunities for the U.S. Armed Services to create impactful solutions for the Department of Defense (DoD) through an immersive educational experience with the private sector. Fellows spend eight weeks developing an understanding of the venture capital and tech startup industry with some of the world’s most advanced companies.

Target Audience
  • Employees of the DoD (active duty, guard & reserve, civilian)
  • Three years of professional work experience preferred
  • Must be available for a full-time commitment to the program (CDR approval required if selected)
  • Fellowships will be virtual until in-person is safe.
Apply Now!
2022 Important dates
  • Session 1

Part-time | Jan. 31 – Feb. 11

Full-time | Feb. 14 – Mar. 28

Session 1 deadline is January 1, 2022.

  • Session 2 - Session 4

Dates to be released.

Get your seat at the table in the right room. AFVentures Fellowship is a partnership with Shift to deliver an industry immersion program that selects innovative officers, enlisted, and civilians in the midst of their careers to join venture capital and technology companies across the US for eight weeks to bring the latest commercial tech trends and innovation back to the Department of Defense.

The application is open to all employees of the Department of Defense- any rank, any MOC, any service. If you are selected for a program, you will be required to submit an endorsement letter from your commander or supervisor granting you permission to participate in the fellowship during the full time immersion dates specified. If you are a member of the National Guard or Reserve, you will need to be placed on active duty status for the duration of the program. All applicants must have at minimum 18 months from separation to be considered.

Those who meet the criteria below:

  • Employees of the DoD (active duty, guard & reserve, civilian)

  • Three years of professional work experience preferred

  • Must be available for a full-time commitment to the program (CDR approval required if selected)

  • Fellowships will be virtual until in-person is safe.

The program is currently virtual, but we expect that some of the participating companies will be returning to offices. If you are selected to participate in-person, your home unit/organization will need to cover the TDY funds for the 6 weeks you will be embedded in the company (which could be at locations across the United States, often San Francisco, DC, NYC, Austin, Boston, Los Angeles). We also expect to have virtual versions of the program (some companies are now virtual) as well as hybrid options (where you would spend some time on site during the program). *There will be virtual tasks prior to the fellowship and after the fellowship that will help participants get the most from the experience.
Once Fellows are selected, they will be placed into a venture capital firm or technology startup. Fellows will be required to participate in the immersion full time, complete a capstone project for your host company, and complete an innovation manifesto for AFWERX to capture the learnings, insights, and opportunities you drew from the program. Additionally, we are looking for participants who will be good representatives of the Department of Defense and use this experience to help the Air Force grow its capabilities and credibility in non-traditional places.
We expect to select Fellows for the February cohort in the beginning of January 2022.

● An updated resume 

● Your last last two performance appraisals (2020-2021, with any PII masked) 

● Completed essay questions (500 words max per question).

● Two References If you are selected, you will need to confirm your participation by requesting additional materials and having your commander or supervisor sign an endorsement verifying your full time participation for the duration of the Fellowship.

For a list of required materials needed for application, click here.

USAF Space Force AFRL and AFWERX Logo Block