The Harvard LEAD Fellowship to Promote Women in Global Health


The 2020 LEAD Fellowship application is now OPEN. This application portal will close on March 15th 2020. Please submit your application

To learn more about our inaugural cohort, the 2019 Jane Jie Sun LEAD Fellows, CLICK HERE to read the press release introducing the selected fellows. 

Learn, Engage, Advance, Disrupt: Why a Global Health LEAD fellowship? 

Women are agents of change when they work in leadership positions. They implement policies that create better lives for families, communities and nations, research shows. They find ways to support and lift up women and children, who continue to experience a disproportionate burden of disease and death worldwide. Still, women remain underrepresented in leadership in public health, medicine and in health and life sciences.

In an effort to equip and empower more leaders in global health, the Harvard Global Health Institute and the Women and Health Initiative at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health are offering a fellowship specifically designed to promote leadership skills in individuals from low- and middle-income countries who will, in turn, mentor future female leaders in global health. 

Worldwide Week Women in GH EventThis unique opportunity combines a 4-month residence at Harvard with the development and execution of a 6-month professional development and mentorship plan. Selected fellows will take classes in any of Harvard’s schools based on their field of interest. They will participate in a customized leadership training program led by experts from Harvard and beyond. Fellows will be invited to share their experiences and to take greater leadership roles, both while at Harvard and upon their return to their places of work. They will also be part of a mentoring program that focuses on their specific needs, industry, and career path. Fellows will be paired with mentors at Harvard and in their home countries, so that the mentorship relationships will last long past their time at the university. Fellows are also expected to serve as mentors to women working in global health in their home country. 

The Experience

A Harvard LEAD fellowship is a transformative experience designed to empower emerging leaders in global health. Successful applicants will articulate a clear vision for personal growth, leadership, and change, and present evidence of their ability to mentor others. Based on their specific needs and goals, fellows will spend a semester at Harvard University engaging in tailored leadership training, mentoring, speaking and networking opportunities, and independent project work. While at Harvard, they will have access to world-class faculty, classes, and executive education programs. They will be both encouraged and challenged in new, inspiring ways.

Building on their Harvard experiences, fellows will return to their home organizations to execute their unique personal growth and leadership plan, with full support from their employers and institutional mentors. Deliverables for this part of the fellowship include hosting training events for peers on specific leadership skills, progress reports, and mentoring a future LEAD fellow, as well as initiatives and action items specific to each fellow.

Application Requirements

We welcome applicants from all continents, regions, disciplines, sectors, gender and gender identities. Applicants for this mid-career fellowship must work full-time in the field of global health. They need to have at least 15 years of professional experience, including demonstrated leadership experience. Global-health related work completed as a university student does not count as professional experience.

Candidates need to be able to reside in the Boston/Cambridge area during their semester at Harvard. While at the university, they must be free of work-related commitments. They must have the full support of their employer, and they must have a champion in their organization who signs on as an internal mentor. If chosen, they also must agree in writing to honor the leave stipulations made with their employers.

Candidates nominate themselves by applying for the fellowship. There are no age limits or academic prerequisites. During the two years prior to arrival at Harvard, the fellows should not have participated in a full-time fellowship that lasted 4 months or longer.

Terms and Conditions

Fellows are in residence at Harvard University for a period of four months, or one academic semester. During this time in residence, they are expected to reside in the Boston/Cambridge area. Fellows have to be free of their regular commitments so they can devote themselves full-time to the work outlined in their proposal. The program will provide: housing in the Boston/Cambridge area; 1 roundtrip, economy class ticket to/from Harvard University; office space; a monthly stipend; and access to courses and other resources at Harvard University during the fellowship period. Fellows are responsible for arranging health insurance for themselves and dependents in advance of the start of the program and are required to setup a US bank account while in residence.

Upon returning to their home institutions, fellows will be required to submit regular progress reports, execute all elements of their 18 month development plan, and will be expected to mentor trainees at their home institutions as well as future LEAD Fellowship awardees.

Program Leadership

The Global Health Women LEAD fellowship program will be led jointly by: 

Professor Ana Langer
Professor of the Practice of Public Health
Director, Women and Health Initiative
Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health
Professor Ashish Jha
Dean for Global Strategy at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health
K.T. Li Professor of Global Health
Director, Harvard Global Health Institute
Professor Ingrid Katz
Assistant Professor in Medicine, Harvard Medical School
Associate Physician, Department of Medicine, Brigham and Women's Hospital
Associate Faculty Director, Harvard Global Health Institute
Kathryn Kempton Amaral
Director of Operations, Research and Education
Harvard Global Health Institute