Applications for the 2018-2019 cohort are now available! Due March 15.

 

The QuEST Community

QuEST accepts six young adults to participate in the program each year. Fellows come from a variety of socio-economic, cultural, racial, and religious backgrounds, and share a commitment to service, social justice, and nonviolence. Each person also commits to a year of voluntary simplicity. The Fellows’ experience includes building community by reaching agreements on household matters, cooking and eating together, and supporting each other throughout the ups and downs of the year. Participation in worship, program, and social activities of the sponsoring Quaker Meeting is encouraged, but not required, and is open to all regardless of faith.

Compensation

Fellows live together cooperatively in Quaker House, a six-bedroom 1910 home adjacent to the Meeting House in the University District of Seattle. QuEST pays for rent, utilities, bus passes, a health care expense fund, and a shared budget for house food. Agencies pay a $125 monthly stipend directly to the Fellow for pocket money. Fellows also receive $150 for personal enrichment and $500 for group activities, and QuEST will pay the interest that accumulates on Fellows’ student loans during their service year. Upon completion of the program, each Fellows receives a $1000 exit stipend and may be eligible for a $500 short-term, interest-free loan.

Training and Support

QuEST sponsors monthly training sessions called QuEST Times as well as fall and summer weekend retreats. QuEST Time topics may be educational sessions such as financial literacy, spiritual discernment, or anti-racism, or they may involve discussion with community or cultural groups. Retreats focus on community building and reflection.

Each Fellow also has the opportunity to partner with a member of UFM or a former QuEST Fellow for a two-year mentoring relationship. The mentor and mentee can explore Seattle together, discuss professional options, encourage each other’s spiritual growth, and form an intergenerational friendship. The Program Director has a monthly dinner with the group and meets one-one-one with each Fellow regularly.

Placement at a Non-Profit Agency

QuEST recruits quality placement agencies for each of our Fellows. QuEST strives to maintain a balanced offering of agency placements including social service work and social change work in a variety of fields. Each site provides meaningful full-time work as well as appropriate training and supervision. For more information, see Current Placements. Next year’s sites will be confirmed in February 2018.

The University Friends Meeting Community

QuEST is a ministry of University Friends Meeting (UFM), an unprogrammed Meeting of the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers). At UFM, Quakers gather in silent worship on Sundays, with individuals speaking as they feel led. In addition to QuEST, UFM has several other ministries, including travelers lodgings in the lower portion of Quaker House, partnerships with homeless organizations to shelter homeless adults in the UFM basement at night, and community and spiritual support for both survivors of sexual abuse and past sexual offenders. While UFM is a safer place for both children and adults because of the awareness and education that this final ministry has produced, we recognize that it requires ongoing dialogue and engagement. UFM welcomes QuEST Fellows through several events throughout the year. Examples include: twice-monthly Light Lunches, a fall potluck, a Christmas open house, and opportunities for the QUEST Fellows to share their experiences with the UFM community. For further information about UFM or its ministries, see the UFM webpage.

Application Process

QuEST Fellows commit to a year of service that begins in late August. Applications to the program are due on March 15th of each year. After March 15th, applications may be accepted on space-available basis. Prospective Fellows will be interviewed by QuEST and by potential placement agencies. Efforts are made to match Fellows with their placement of interest, but placements at specific agencies are not guaranteed. Fellows make their final commitment in early May once they have accepted a placement offer. University Friends Meeting is an equal-opportunity employer.