Counties can now apply to host an Economic Recovery Corps Fellow to accelerate recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic
The Economic Recovery Corps Program (ERC) is a multi-year, $30 million collaborative initiative designed to “accelerate recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic in distressed communities and regions throughout the U.S.” by connecting organizations with the talent and capacity needed to “advance new ways of doing economic development that promote economic resilience and transformative change.” The National Association of Counties (NACo) is one of six partnering nationalize organization managing the program.
The ERC is funded by the Economic Development Administration (EDA) under the CARES Act and led by the International Economic Development Council (IEDC) in partnership with six leading national organizations:
- Center on Rural Innovation (CORI)
- International City/County Management Association (ICMA)
- National Association of Counties Research Foundation (NACo RF)
- National Association of Development Organizations Research Foundation (NADO RF)
- National League of Cities Institute (NLCI)
- RAIN Catalysts
Big program, bigger goals
The ERC’s website further details the program’s goals and agenda:
The Economic Recovery Corps was created to address long-standing economic issues in America that came into sharp focus during the COVID-19 pandemic, particularly for historically underserved populations and communities, which led to vastly different outcomes that continue to impact recovery efforts. Economic development approaches have and will continue to pivot in the coming years, and to ensure that communities do not get left further behind, new approaches to building capacity are necessary.
In order to meet these goals, the IEDC and its partners are building a nationwide corps of diverse, cross-sector talent with the skills and expertise to help activate regional economic development strategies that promote connectivity, innovation, and knowledge-sharing between urban, rural, and tribal areas across the U.S.
Over the course of the 2.5-year ERC fellowship, selected host organizations will receive technical assistance, planning, and capacity-building support from an ERC Fellow who will be based in their community or region. In total, up to 65 ERC Fellows will be placed around the country in economic development and related organizations in under resourced communities throughout the nation. Fellows will be highly-trained early to mid-career professionals, equipped to help identify and advance innovative, locally-driven initiatives to build stronger, more resilient, and inclusive economies.
Hosts will reflect the entire community and economic development field spectrum, from city and county government to regional coalitions, economic development organizations, economic development districts (EDDs), and entrepreneurial technical assistance providers.
Apply to host a fellow
Prospective host organizations will have until June 30, 2023, 11:59 pm Hawaiian Standard Time (HST), to submit their expression of interest and initiate the application process. Host placements will finalize in December 2023, with fellows beginning work with their communities starting in January 2024 and ending in June 2026. County governments are eligible to apply to host an ERC Fellow.
Interested parties should submit an expression of interest at www.iedconline.org/ERC by June 30, 2023, and attend an upcoming program webinar for interested hosts.
Expression of Interest Information Sessions: