Creating conversational communities that drive change

New Leaders Week Application

 Applications for SEED New Leaders Week 2021 are now closed. 

Thank you for your interest in applying to SEED New Leaders Week (NLW) and the 2021-22 SEED Project Year! Please read this page carefully before you begin your application. The application is a multistep process that requires your New Leaders Application, a Site Support Form from your administrator, and several further forms if you are accepted. The application link is at the bottom of this page.

Because of the current health crisis, we are offering three virtual New Leaders Weeks (NLWs) this summer instead of our usual week-long residential trainings.

We will offer 3  online New Leaders Weeks.  In each session there will be specified times that everyone will be online together in addition to participating in activities and sharing on discussion boards during offline times. 

There will be 2 two week sessions and 1 five week session.  Each has  synchronous and  asynchronous requirements-

 The 2 week training has 40 hours  of synchronous calls  and 40 hours of required asynchronous work.  There will be  two group sessions each day Monday through Friday for two weeks. The sessions will be 8-10 a.m. PT /11-1 p.m. ET and 1-3 p.m. PT./4-6 p.m. ET.  Additional hours between daily sessions and after provide time for.4 additional hours on Canvas discussion boards each day..

The two week sessions will be:

  • June 21-July 2
  • July 12-23

The 5 week session has 20 hours of synchronous calls and 60 hours of required asynchronous work including 2 2-hour Zoom calls and 12 additional hours on Canvas discussion boards each week for participants

The five week session will be:

  • July 12 to August 13

Step 1: Before Completing the Application

To begin, please take some time to familiarize yourself with what the National SEED Project is and to identify whether or not you feel SEED is appropriate for yourself and your institution, organization, or community. You can do this by reading about SEED and New Leaders Week here on our website, contacting us to request a conversation, participating in a local SEED seminar, or speaking at length with someone who has participated in or led a SEED seminar. As you do so, please consider: 

  • 2015 smallgroup
    • Does your institution, organization, or community have capacity (space, time, and resources) to host an online or in person  SEED seminar?
    • Are there enough people (we advise 15-25 participants and a minimum of 8) who are interested in and able to engage in at least 25 hours of SEED seminars across the year?
    • Do you have institutional (including financial) support from your leadership to host an online or in person SEED seminar? (And even if you are part of the leadership structure, do you have support from other leaders as well?)
    • How many SEED seminar groups will your institution, organization or community host? How many SEED leaders will you need to facilitate your anticipated number of seminar groups (we recommend one facilitator for every 10-15 participants)?

Step 2: Determine if you are ready to engage in the SEED process

Next, please download a copy of the essay questions in our application to understand what New Leaders Week entails and what it requires of participants. Please do not submit the doc to SEED; it is for your informational and drafting purposes only.

SEED takes self-reflection and being in conversation with others very seriously. Toward this end, we strongly recommend that you use your downloaded Word document to craft and revisit your answers before you begin the online application.

As you review the application, please pay particular attention to our checklist of statements about your commitments to SEED and NLW at the beginning of the application. Many past participants have reported that SEED NLW is one of the best or most important professional development trainings that they have attended, and many of those same people have reported that SEED NLW is one of the most challenging and exhausting trainings that they have attended. Please consider:

  • Do you have the capacity this summer to participate in an intensive online immersive  training?
  • Are you ready to share and learn about yourself, your identities, and your experiences and to work with others to do the same in the hopes of moving toward social justice?If accepted, what would you need to do to prepare and care for yourself during your NLW experience?
  • Do you have the people and resources you need in your personal and professional life to support you attending NLW?

Step 3: Complete the Application

Application Sections 

The online application has two required sections and one optional section:

  • Section 1: New Leaders Application: Applicant completes at the link below.
  • Section 2: Site Support Form: Site support person  completes on behalf of applicant. Administrators applying to NLW may not complete this portion for themselves. The site support person you name in your application will be sent a link via email to do this once you have completed the New Leaders Application.
  • Optional Scholarship Section: If your institution is seeking a scholarship, the site support person must complete the scholarship section at the end of the Site Support Form. (Criteria/details about scholarships below.)

Sections 1 and 2 must be submitted for application to be considered complete. SEED will not review your application until both Sections 1 and 2 are submitted.

SEED Project Screening Parameters 

As you prepare your answers, please consider that in reviewing applications and forming our New Leaders Week cohorts we have several intentions:

  • We first consider whether or not we believe the applicant and sponsoring organization understand what SEED is and whether or not they have the capacity to host and learn how to facilitate a seminar; 
  • We next name the intention that all of our participants can see mirrors of themselves in other staff and participants based on their occupational roles and types of organizations as well as by the identities that we take up across the week. These include but are not limited to: gender identity, sexual identity, racial identity, socioeconomic identity, age identity, and physical, socioemotional, and cognitive identities. 
  • Finally, we consider the overall balance of our cohorts, which we create with the intention of having as many identities represented as possible. That is, there is no social identity whose representation we prohibit in our cohort. 

We review applications on a rolling basis with these three criteria in mind, and at each decision point we will choose whether to accept an applicant, reject an applicant for not completing the application or not indicating their own and their organization’s capacity to host a SEED seminar, or defer our decision based on the evolving formation of our cohorts and staff teams. Additionally, we may defer applicants to future cohorts because of needed work by the applicant before training as a facilitator or organization before hosting a SEED seminar. 

If you do not agree with our decisions at any time point, please contact us to let us know. We are willing to engage with you to seek a resolution that meets both of our needs.

Again, as part of your application process, you and a site support person (supervising/fellow administrator) will be asked to share about your capacity to attend NLW and to lead a SEED seminar. If you have questions regarding SEED or NLW or our application process please contact us.

Step 4: Submit the Application 

When you are ready to submit your application answers online, please complete all pages of the form at the "Complete Application" link below. When you click "Submit" at the end, the system will send an email to your chosen site support person and request that they complete their parts of the application, the Site Support Form and (optionally) the Scholarship Section. Note that your answers are not shared with each other.

You will not be able to save your application part way through and return to it. Again, we strongly recommend that you compose your essay answers in advance in the doc, spending several days on them. You can then copy and paste your answers into the online application form. Please do not submit the  doc to SEED; it is for your informational and drafting purposes only.

The final due date for the Application and Site Support Form is April 30, 2021. Accepted applicants will also be asked to complete an Acceptance form and they and their site support person will each be required to complete one further Agreement form. These and their deposit must be submitted by May 15, 2021. Last year, we filled all spaces before the deadline, so we encourage you to submit all materials well in advance of that date.

Click here to complete Application

After You Apply

You will hear from us approximately three weeks after the review date following submission of both your application and your Administrative Support Form.

Should you be accepted, you will be expected to attend one of three similarly structured SEED New Leaders Weeks. Your application indicates the location and date of the week you want to attend.

Upon completion of your New Leaders Week, you will design, coordinate, and facilitate an ongoing SEED seminar in your institution, organization, or community. We expect SEED seminars to be at least 8 (and preferably 15-25) colleagues meeting on a regular schedule for at least 90 minutes a session for a total of at least 25 hours over a period of no fewer than 10 weeks and no more than 24 months. SEED New Leaders Week prepares you to lead this seminar.


The fees for SEED participation in 2021 are:

The fees  for SEED participation in either 2 week or 5 week  online sessions in 2021 are:

  • $5500 per participant is the fee for private schools and private site partners.
  • $3500 per participant for all public schools and public site  partners. Additional scholarship funds are available based on communities served by the site and demonstrated need.
  • Scholarships are available for eligible institutions which include public N-20 schools, community organizations  and other institutions with demonstrated need

Applicant spaces will not be reserved until all application and support forms are accepted and approved by SEED and a $1000 (or $500 for those receiving scholarships) deposit is received by SEED for each accepted applicant. The entirety of the payment can be made then, or else the second portion of the payment is due four weeks following the end of the applicant's/applicants' New Leaders Week. Please note our policy on Refunds, Switching Participants, and Deferrals.

The SEED fee covers:

  • A year-long professional development opportunity for approximately 15-25 local colleagues, led by the organization’s newly trained SEED leader(s)
  • Ongoing assistance from SEED co-directors, SEED staff, and other experienced SEED leaders
  • Access to SEED leaders-only resources and online community
  • Print and digital media resources for adults and youth
  • Regional networks for SEED leaders
  • Bi-monthly calls with SEED leaders and SEED staff
  • Weekly check ins during Craft Cabin
  • Monthly office hours
  • Three check in leader reports during the year
  • As needed support via the info@ line

Schools and sponsoring sites are asked to provide an additional $250 - $500 per seminar for books, handouts, materials, and food, to be provided directly to the seminar leader(s) (not to SEED) and handled locally.

SEED expects institutions and organizations to support the year-long SEED seminar and seminar leader(s), through strong verbal endorsement from administration, and through material support, such as funds to purchase books and DVDs for the seminar (which can start an equity library onsite), access to copy machines and printers, time during all-faculty/all-staff meetings for SEED, and backing to ensure seminars have a regular meeting place and nourishing food.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us.

If You Are Seeking a Scholarship

SEED is committed to partnering with communities, organizations, and institutions who demographically reflect our broader world. Toward this end, SEED has always worked to provide scholarships through our own grant writing and fundraising as well as in collaboration with partner sites in order to support both diversifying our cohorts and ensuring that those further from social justice are able to attend.

 For cohorts 35 A, B, & C in the summer of 2021, the fee for a partner that is a public institution or public-facing non-profit  serving marginalized communities or community organizations is $3500 per participant. The fee for a private site  partner is $5500 per participant.  Partners may apply for additional scholarships based on the community they serve (e.g. the % of students of color or students receiving full/reduced price meals) 

The scholarship portion of the Administrative Support Form must be completed by someone authorized to approve and receive funding and support all aspects of the SEED seminar, including finances, logistics, and promotion of equitable education in the proposed SEED site. We must receive the scholarship portion and the full Administrative Support Form from the administrator, as well as a completed New Leaders Application from each person who wishes to become a SEED leader.

The basic criteria for scholarships are:

  1. The partner site's capacity and commitment to host a SEED seminar for at least two years following receipt of the scholarship.
  2. The partner site's commitment is that if the SEED seminar does not occur, the partner will owe the total amount of the scholarship to the National SEED Project.
  3. Scholarships will be awarded based on demonstrated financial need, diversity in terms of marginalized populations, and public mission of the site.

We anticipate that scholarships will range from $1000 to $4000.

 In your application, you and a supervising/fellow administrator will be asked to share your vision of SEED in your setting.


— Cheryl Robinson, Supervisor, Office of Minority Achievement, Arlington Public Schools, Virginia

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