LISC National
Oramenta F. Newsome Fellowship

Oramenta Newsome Community Development Fellowship

*Applications for the Oramenta Newsome Community Development Fellowship are now closed. *

The Oramenta Newsome Community Development Fellowship is a ten-week (September to December) part-time paid fellowship opportunity for college students, recent graduates, or people who are in the early stages of their career and have exhibited a keen interest in the community development field. 

Oramenta Newsome served as Executive Director of LISC DC for nearly 25 years. Throughout her life, Oramenta balanced a deeply rooted neighborhood orientation with a national perspective. She dedicated decades to making Washington, DC a global city that benefited neighborhood residents. Oramenta believed that all people want the same quality of life in their neighborhood – a home, a job, and access to resources and amenities. 

By continuing to invest in projects and initiatives that help to balance the income disparity and promote equity and inclusion, we are one step closer towards realizing her vision for Washington, DC - inclusive, community-driven, and equitable. With this fellowship, we are creating a lasting legacy and honoring her commitment to community development.

Fellows will receive a stipend and will be placed in local nonprofit partner organizations that share Oramenta’s vision for Washington, DC. Fellows will engage in community development work at the direction of the host nonprofit. The inaugural fellow class will start in 2019 and LISC will provide the fellows with a comprehensive experience that will include an orientation, seminar series, ongoing mentorship, a tour of Washington, DC neighborhoods and a final presentation of their work. 2019 Fellows will work on affordable housing, resident engagement and/or workforce development initiatives.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What type of work will fellows engage in?

Fellows will work on affordable housing, resident engagement and/or workforce development initiatives. See Fellowship Scope of Work for more info. 

Is this fellowship open to Graduate students?

Yes, undergraduate students, graduate students, and recent graduates are all eligible, as long as they can demonstrate their keen interest and/or experience in community development.

Must I have a college degree to be eligible?

As long as you can speak to your relevant life experiences, not having a formal college education is not a disqualifier. Candidates should be able to demonstrate their interest in community development via previous or current volunteer, academic, or work experience. 

When does the fellowship begin and end? 

The fellowship will start during the first or second week of September (depending upon the nonprofit partner’s schedule) and will end during the first or second week of December. 

Is this a full-time or part-time position?

The position is part-time (20-25 hours/week).

Can fellows work remotely? 

No, all fellows must be available to work in Washington, DC. 

Can fellows work at the nonprofit in the evenings or on the weekends?

Daytime working hours are required, though the organization may occasionally invite you to participate in some evening and/or weekend events. 

What else will the fellowship entail?

LISC will provide fellows with a comprehensive experience that will include an orientation, seminar series, a tour of LISC’s Elevating Equity neighborhoods, mentorship, and a finale presentation.

What kind of experience and/or skillsets should the ideal candidate have?

The ideal candidate should be comfortable with community engagement, outreach and recruitment, advocacy, working in coalitions, and talking to DC residents. Other preferred experiences and skillsets include:

  • Excellent communication, interpersonal, and customer service skills
  • Experience conducting surveys, stakeholder interviews, and focus groups
  • Experience working in communities of color and/or faith-based organizations


Lotanna Obodozie, Assistant Program Officer