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How to Apply to the ARL Leadership Fellows Program

group photo of 2016–2017 ARL Leadership Fellows cohort at Duke University
2016–2017 ARL Leadership Fellows, Duke University

The application deadline for the 2021–2022 ARL Leadership Fellows cohort has now passed. The application cycle for the 2024 ARL Leadership Fellows cohort will open in spring 2023.

Here’s how to apply:

  1. Submit a statement of interest in the program (3 pages maximum). The statement should include your name, address, phone number, and email address. Concisely describe your interest in the program and address the six criteria for assessing candidate applications. The statement should include the following:
    • Your current leadership role(s)
    • How leadership development will strengthen your current work
    • The ways in which the program will inform your career and professional decisions
    • Your future aspirations, including possible roles other than dean, director, or similar senior roles
    • Your motivation to seek advanced leadership training: what do you hope to achieve through leadership roles?
    • Leadership competencies that you feel most relevant to your needs and about which you hope to gain greater understanding
    • Your understanding of diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) principles and how you embed and embrace DEI values and perspective into your daily work
  2. Provide the most updated version of your curriculum vitae (CV).
  3. Ask your library/archive director to submit a letter of support for your application (2 pages maximum). The letter of support should concisely address:
    • How the library/archive director believes the program will advance the professional growth of the applicant
    • The applicant’s interest in broadening the applicant’s leadership contributions in their current role or in moving to higher levels of library/archive leadership
    • Exceptional and consistent performance in current leadership and management by the applicant
    • Effective engagement by the applicant with others in professional and interpersonal relationships
    • Progressive thinking by the applicant in regards to libraries and archives and their evolving roles
    • The applicant’s engagement with policies, programs, scholarship, and practices that advance DEI principles in the organization, the institution, higher education, and the profession

Submission and Timeline

The application window for the 2024 cohort will open in spring 2023. Please check this web page periodically for more information as the application window period approaches.


Tuition for the 2021–22 Leadership Fellows program is $7,000 for ARL members and $8,600 for non-ARL members. Tuition covers all program session costs excluding travel and lodging for proposed (or possible) in-person experiences. Financial aid and sponsorship opportunities will be available to offset some costs for eligible fellows.

More Information

Questions, comments, or concerns? Please feel free to contact John E. Ulmschneider, program director, or Deborah R. Grayson, senior director, Leadership and Organizational Development, at leadershipfellows@arl.org.