Washington (April 25, 2024) – Following a nationally competitive application process, the U.S. Department of State has selected 15 talented individuals for the 2024 cohort of the Foreign Affairs Information Technology (FAIT) Fellowship–one of the agency’s high-profile diversity recruitment programs.

Funded by the Department of State and administered by The Washington Center for Internships and Academic Seminars (TWC), the FAIT Fellowship provides two years of academic funding (up to $43,500 annually) for an IT-related bachelor’s or master’s degree program. Fellows also receive stipend support for two summer internships, professional development, and mentorship. When they complete the fellowship program and meet the Foreign Service entry requirements, fellows receive an appointment in the Foreign Service as a Diplomatic Technology Officer (DTO).

“We’re impressed by highly talented and diverse applicants who have a passion for public service and a strong commitment to U.S. diplomacy,” says Patricia Boerner, FAIT Fellowship Program Manager, U.S. Department of State. “Our FAIT Fellows bring their innovation, energy, and perspectives to their roles in the Foreign Service as they become part of a global team shaping the future of diplomatic technology.”

Of the 15 FAIT Fellows for the 2024 cohort, five are in the graduate fellowship and ten are in the undergraduate fellowship.

Graduate fellows

  • Stefan Andreev, Utica University (BBA ’23); Graduate School: Johns Hopkins University
  • Confido Banza, University of Arizona (BAS ’24); Graduate School: University of Arizona
  • John Mercedes, Rhode Island College (BS ’23); Graduate School: Worcester Polytechnic Institute
  • Lousindy Mitton, Miami Dade College (BS ’23); Graduate School: University of West Florida
  • Tristan Salvanera, Wake Forest University (BS ’08); Graduate School: Georgetown University

Undergraduate fellows

  • Tommy Allen, Indiana University Bloomington
  • Ana Altman, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • Uday Brathwaite, Pace University
  • Isa Cohen, Arizona State University
  • KaMeron Hopkins, Susquehanna University
  • Astrid Gabriella Tagne Meleu, University of Maryland, College Park
  • Ahmed Mohammad, Norwich University
  • Andrea Olavarrieta, Rutgers University – New Brunswick
  • Joshua Riley, Brigham Young University
  • Essence-Jade Springer, North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University

“The talented, diverse group of students selected for the 2024 cohort of the FAIT Fellowship will provide lasting impact,” says Kim Churches, president of TWC. “And we’re honored to have been able to recruit the eighth cohort of this important diversity fellowship program.”

The FAIT Fellowship aims to attract top technology talent that represents the ethnic, racial, gender, social, and geographic diversity of the United States. The FAIT Fellowship encourages applications from women, minority groups historically underrepresented in the Foreign Service, and those with financial need.

The 2025 application cycle for the FAIT Fellowship program is planned to begin in September 2024. Announcements will be posted online at https://www.faitfellowship.org/ and shared on social media on Facebook, Instagram, X and LinkedIn.


About The Washington Center for Internships and Academic Seminars

The Washington Center creates flexible, immersive pathways to enhance the pipeline of diverse talent that build more equitable, inclusive workplaces and communities. Since our founding, we’ve helped more than 60,000 young people translate their college majors into career paths. We use our scale and expertise to customize each learner’s experience to be truly transformative.

About the U.S. Department of State

The Department of State’s mission is to protect and promote U.S. security, prosperity, and democratic values and shape an international environment in which all Americans can thrive. The Department’s workforce includes some 13,000 members of the Foreign Service, 11,000 Civil Service employees, and 45,000 locally employed staff at more than 270 diplomatic missions worldwide.