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Expression of Interest – GNSO Nominated Mentor for the ICANN Fellowship Program

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The GNSO has been invited to nominate one individual to serve as an ICANN Fellowship Program mentor for three consecutive ICANN meetings beginning with ICANN72. The GNSO is hereby opening a call for Expressions of Interest to solicit volunteers for this position. Please see details below. To apply, fill out the Expression of Interest form and submit it to The deadline for submissions is 17 December 2020 at 23:59 UTC.

Selection of Mentors

The ICANN Fellowship Program has invited each of ICANN's Supporting Organizations (SOs) and Advisory Committees (ACs) to nominate one individual each (total of 7) to serve in the capacity of mentor for the Fellowship Program.

The GNSO is opening this Expression of Interest to solicit volunteers for the GNSO-nominated mentor position. The GNSO Standing Selection Committee (SSC) will evaluate the responses and make a recommendation to the GNSO Council, which will review the SSC's recommendation and make a final decision.


The aim of the ICANN Fellowship Program is to strengthen the diversity of the multistakeholder model by fostering opportunities for individuals from underserved and underrepresented communities to become active participants in the ICANN community. Fellows are exposed to the workings of the ICANN community, are assigned a mentor, and receive training across different areas of knowledge and skill building before, during, and after an ICANN Public Meeting.

The program was launched in 2007 at ICANN29 in San Juan. In 2014, the program expanded considerably, allowing more eligible newcomers and returning fellowship alumni to participate. As the program grew, it became evident that mentors could help to strengthen the relationship between fellows and the ICANN community.

ICANN49 marked the beginning of the pilot "Fellowship Coaching process," which was formally launched for ICANN52. Following a community consultation, the mentoring process continues to evolve. Starting with ICANN65, Supporting Organizations (SOs) and Advisory Committee(s) (ACs) are each invited to nominate one mentor, for a total of seven.


This is a volunteer role. If ICANN meetings are held in person during this period, mentors will receive travel funding (including hotel accommodation and a stipend) for the (up to three) ICANN Public Meetings they attend as a mentor.

Time Commitment

Mentors will serve for three (3) consecutive ICANN Public Meetings, starting with ICANN72. Mentors generally must plan on a time commitment of approximately 30-40 hours before, during, and immediately after each ICANN Public Meeting. This includes extensive pre-meeting preparation, on-site support for their assigned fellows, and post-meeting reporting.


Mentors prepare new and returning fellows to participate actively in the ICANN community. They guide fellows through extensive pre-meeting preparation, provide on-site networking and advice, and work collaboratively to ensure fellows develop the resources and skills to contribute to ICANN's work.

Each mentor coaches a team of up to seven ICANN fellows. Mentors should be prepared to assist fellows with a range of experience levels, including newcomers, individuals who are somewhat familiar with ICANN and its ecosystem, and fellowship alumni.

In brief, mentors are expected to:

  • Provide advice and guidance
  • Share experience as appropriate
  • Offer encouragement and support
  • Identify resources that will help mentees
  • Encourage mentees to join ICANN community groups based on sector of interest
  • Introduce fellows to community members
  • Set deliverables for mentees during different stages of the program (pre-meeting, during meeting, and post-meeting)
  • Participate in mentor post-meeting evaluation

Additional information and details about mentor responsibilities are available in the ICANN Fellowship Program Mentoring Guidelines.

Skills and Experience

  • Active participant in GNSO structures and policy development processes with a track record of engagement
  • Previous experience serving as a mentor, teacher, or learning facilitator is a plus
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills
  • Project management and coordination skills
  • Networking skills

Desired Attributes

  • Member of a GNSO Stakeholder Group and/or Constituency
  • Understanding of the ICANN's mission, structure, and multistakeholder model
  • Willingness to devote the necessary time prior to, during, and after each ICANN Meeting
  • Ability to create a supportive atmosphere for mentees by being open, accessible, and approachable
  • Robust network within the ICANN community and ability to leverage and share that network
  • Ability to present information in a manner that is simple and easy to understand
  • Ability to establish weekly projects and deliverables for mentees using a clear and consistent learning approach


If you have any questions, please send an email to: