Developing the Next Generation of Prevention Leaders Developing the Next Generation of Prevention Leaders


The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s Center for Substance Abuse Prevention (CSAP) launched the Prevention Fellowship Program in 2006 in an effort to build a workforce of substance abuse professionals. The CSAP Prevention Fellowship Program has two components: a Prevention Fellowship Program and a Prevention Internship Program.

During their program experience, fellows and interns focus on acquiring the skills needed for success in the fields of substance use disorder prevention and behavioral health. The fellowship and internship programs prepare fellows and interns to provide capacity-building technical assistance (to support integration of behavioral health prevention services in their state, tribe, or jurisdictions). In addition to building competencies in diverse areas of public, behavioral, and allied health practice, fellows and interns have opportunities to develop critical research, writing, evaluation, and presentation skills within a structured training program.

Since 2006, the Prevention Fellowship Program has served over 270 fellows and interns. Meanwhile, 45 states including the District of Columbia, eight U.S. territories, three national organizations, eight Drug-Free Communities grantees, and 12 Tribal organizations have supported the program by providing mentorship and field placements to fellows and interns.


Prevention Fellowship Program
(We are currently not recruiting for the fellowship in the 2018 program year. Please contact our office for more information)

  • Fellowships runs for 2 years.
  • Fellows receive a yearly stipend.
  • Fellows work in state agencies, with support from mentors there.
  • Fellows receive training in behavioral health, the Strategic Prevention Framework, leadership, health communications, and cultural competency.
  • Fellows learn a set of core competencies to prepare for the Prevention Specialist certification examination.

Prevention Internship Program

  • Interns work 40 hours per week.
  • Interns receive a salary
  • Interns work within tribal organizations.
  • Interns receive training in the Strategic Prevention Framework, evaluation and epidemiology, and cultural responsiveness within tribal communities.


Applicants seeking to join the fellowship or internship programs must meet the following basic eligibility critieria:

  1. Have U.S. citizenship or proof of residency in a U.S. territory or Pacific Jurisdiction.
  2. Submit a detailed response, of no more than two pages, stating why they should be selected for the fellowship or internship and how the selection would support their career goals.
  3. Have a strong interest in substance misuse and substance use disorder prevention and behavioral health.
  4. Obtain at least two letters of recommendation from an academic or professional reference.

Specific qualification specific to the Fellowship: Must meet one of the following criteria.

  • Must have a bachelor’s degree (or higher) in a field associated with substance misuse and substance use disorder prevention or
  • Must have two years of education from an accredited college/university institution (or an Associate degree) and 2 years of work experience in the prevention field.

Specific qualification specific to the Internship:

  • Must have at least 2 years of education from an accredited college/university institution (or an Associate degree).

Additional Qualifying Skills and Attributes
Along with a demonstrated commitment to working in the substance abuse prevention field, fellowship and internship applicants must have (1) strong written and oral communications skills; (2) good interpersonal skills; (3) the ability to work independently and collaboratively in various professional environments; and (4) basic computer skills.

locations globe


CSAP Prevention Fellowship Program
Phone: (240) 485-1700