Students must first apply for a summer internship with the State Department by the November application deadline. Upon submission, the Department of State makes an evaluation on the basis of the application, statement of interest, transcripts, foreign language ability when applicable, and completed academic studies relevant to the type of work each applicant hopes to perform.
The Department of State forwards the list of qualifying candidates to William & Mary. The College collaborates with the Harriman Fellowship Advisory Committee to review the pool of candidates. Approximately nine finalists are interviewed by the selection committee in Washington, DC, and notified of the committee's decision within twenty-four hours. Once security clearances are in place, the Harriman Fellows then commence their eleven weeks of service.
Upon completion of their service, Fellows are required to present a summary report to the Harriman Fellowship Advisory Committee in Washington, DC. To promote a deeper understanding of international relations, Fellows are encouraged to deliver a report to their college about their service experiences.