How to Win a Guinness World Record on a Fellowship

Apr 20, 2016

How to win a Guinness World Record on a Fellowship

Applying to and winning a competitive fellowship is an accomplishment in itself, but did you ever consider that your fellowship might be the perfect opportunity to compete for a Guinness World Record? Here are some records that are just waiting to be broken by a future fellow.

Guinness World Record # 1: Travelling the NYC Subway in the Shortest Time on a Single Fare

According to the Rapid Transit Challenge, the record time for traveling the entire New York City subway system is 26 hours, 21 minutes, 8 seconds by Kevin Foster (USA) on October 25-26, 1989. Considering this hasn’t been broken since 1989, this might take a few tries, which means you might need to relocate to New York City for a time.

How to do it:

Apply to NYC Civic Corps: The NYC Civic Corps is an AmeriCorps program run by NYC Service, and provides a diverse group of professionals to serve full-time with partnering organizations, working to increase their organizational capacity to engage volunteers and build sustainable volunteer initiatives. Small teams of NYC Civic Corps members are assigned to partner organizations for 10 months and receive a monthly living stipend, health benefits and an end-of-service education award. Corps Members range from age 22-60.

Guinness World Record #2: World’s Longest Poem

According to the Guinness Book of World Records, the current record is held by a romantic Frenchman, Monsieur Patrick Huet, who in August 2006 wrote a 7,547 verse love poem. Wow, that’s a long poem. To break this record, you might need a fellowship to devote time to such an endeavor.

How to do it:

Apply to the Ruth Lilly and Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Poetry Fellowships: Five Ruth Lilly and Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Poetry Fellowships in the amount of $25,800 each will be awarded to young poets in the U.S. through a national competition sponsored by the Poetry Foundation, publisher of Poetry magazine. Applicants must be U.S. citizens between 21 – 31 years of age. (Hurry – deadline April 30th!)

Guinness World Record #3: Largest Give-away of Free Energy-saving Light Bulbs

According to the Guinness World Records, the largest give-away of free energy-saving light bulbs is 22,900,000, achieved by the Programa Luz Sustentable (Mexico) and organized by the Fideicomiso para el Ahorro de Energía Eléctrica (Mexico) across Mexico, from July 5, 2011 to June 14, 2012. Could Americans beat this? You might need funding from the U.S. Department of Energy.

How to do it:

Apply to the Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Science and Technology Policy Fellowships (SunShot Initiative Fellowships): EERE STP Fellowships are two-year opportunities for recent graduates and experienced scientists and engineers to participate in policy-related projects at DOE’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy in Washington, D.C. There are three levels of Fellowships: Junior Fellows (Bachelor’s), Fellows (Masters or PhD) and Senior Fellows (Masters or PhD). Fellows receive a salary, health benefits, travel assistance, and relocation allowance. SunShot applications are taken twice per year with rolling application deadlines of January 15th and June 15th.

Check out the ProFellow database for more ideas on fellowships that will get you one step closer to your Guinness World Record-breaking ambitions.

© Victoria Johnson 2016, all rights reserved.