Apply Now: 2024 Emerging Leaders Program

Apply Now: 2024 Emerging Leaders Program
Image: Alexander Levi and Amanda Schachter (Fellows in Architecture/Environmental Structures/Design '22); "Turntable;" Camden, NJ; 2021; Photo Credit: Andreas Symietz

This year-long program provides leadership training for manager-level career arts administrators in the New York City area and is provided free of charge to selected participants.

Through the support of The Willem de Kooning Foundation, New York Foundation for the Arts (NYFA) is pleased to announce the seventh session of the “NYFA’s Emerging Leaders Program,” a free year-long program that provides leadership training for manager-level arts administrators. 

The goal of the program is to provide manager-level cultural workers with the skills and networks necessary to develop in their current positions, and to empower them to pursue future leadership roles in the non-profit arts sector.

NYFA believes an investment in cultural infrastructure benefits the entire field by building stronger links and shared knowledge between artists and arts administrators.

Selected participants will:

  • Discover and better understand individual strengths, challenges, and motivations as a leader
  • Explore various managerial models and tools that are key to successful arts management
  • Identify the institutional functions and elements of success that are unique to arts leadership
  • Develop an individual learning plan for each participant that addresses at least one current critical leadership challenge

They will benefit from:

  • A cohort-learning model that relies on shared experiences to explore and develop a greater awareness of personal leadership style
  • Guest speakers, panel discussions, and group exercises that focus on purpose-centered leadership, including diversity, equity and inclusion, and decision-making frameworks
  • Technical workshops and panels related to management, strategic planning, fundraising, finance, and project management
  • Exposure to key influencers within the arts and cultural communities
  • Access to alumni network and a group of alumni advisors for guidance and support
  • A peer cohort of 24 arts administrators

We are accepting applications through Tuesday, January 16, 11:59 PM ET. See below for more details and to apply.

Since its inception, 150 arts administrators have participated in the program, coming from a diverse range of arts and cultural organizations serving a wide variety of disciplines and constituents. Please visit these links for a list of our alumni* from the inaugural 2013 cohort, 2014, 2016, 2018, 2019, and 2020 programs. 
*All affiliations were at the time that they took part in the program.

The program will include a five-day in-person intensive course comprised of workshops and panels, follow-up virtual sessions and check-ins with NYFA staff and consultants, facilitated peer mentoring meetings, an alumni group meeting, a final two-day wrap up session, and a reunion event at the end of the year. 

NYFA is seeking applicants who are committed to the arts with clear long-term leadership goals that are willing to engage in self-reflection and step outside of their comfort zone to learn new skills. We integrate creativity into the program with a flexible and adaptive approach that adjusts to the needs of the cohort throughout.

Participants working in all disciplines are invited to apply. Visual arts-based administrators, and administrators of Color are strongly encouraged to apply.


  • Manager-level administrators in full-time employment by 501(c)3 arts and cultural organizations, managing at least one person at their organization.
  • Commitment to attendance at all mandatory sessions.
  • Open to participants from the five boroughs of New York City and Tri-State area within commuting distance of New York City.

Application Guidelines

For the application, we ask you to provide:

  • Organization information
  • A description of your current role and responsibilities
  • Why you are interested in applying to this program and goals relative to your leadership career path within the next 2-5 years
  • The impact you’d like this program to have for your organization, your role, or an institutional challenge you are facing.
  • A narrative bio of your professional career
  • Contact details of your supervisor and confirm permission to participate

How to Apply

NYFA only accept applications through Submittable. First-time users will need to register with Submittable to access the application portal.

Application Closes: Tuesday, January 16, 2024, 11:59 PM ET
Notification: Applicants will be notified on or before February 9, 2024


Applications are reviewed by alumni of the program and outside executive professionals. 

To request an accommodation or assistance in applying, please email [email protected]. We ask that requests for accommodation be made as soon as possible or by Tuesday, December 19 to allow adequate time for staff to support you in submitting an application before the deadline.

Mandatory Program Dates:*

  • Intro Meeting: Friday, February 23, 10:00 AM-12:30 PM ET
  • 5-Day Intensive: Monday-Friday, March 4-8, 2024, 10:00 AM-4:00 PM ET
  • Virtual Workshops: Fridays 10:00 AM-1:00 PM; April 19, June 14, August 16, and October 18
  • Virtual Pod Meetings: Fridays 10:00 AM-11:30 AM ET; March 29, May 17, July 19, September 20, November 15 and January 17, 2025
  • In-Person Intensive: Thursday-Friday, December 12-13, 10:00 AM-4:00 PM ET
  • Reunion event: TBC week of February 24, 2025

In-person sessions will take place at New York Foundation for the Arts, 29 W 38th Street, Fl 9, New York, NY 10018. Virtual sessions will happen via Zoom.

*Attendance is mandatory for all sessions, so please check your calendar before applying.


Contact the NYFA Learning team at [email protected] with “Emerging Leaders Program” in the subject line. We understand that arts organizations can be structured in a variety of ways so please contact us for any eligibility clarifications.


Connecting with an amazing cohort of peers as we together learn how to navigate arts leadership has been a transformative experience for me. I began this training program full of ambition to grow as a leader and I leave it with the tools to realize my goals. Next week I am interviewing for a museum Director position, which I don’t believe would not have happened without the NYFA Emerging Leaders program.

Anna Conlan, Neil C. Trager Director, The Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art, SUNY New Paltz

The NYFA Emerging Leaders program is one of a kind and a much-needed resource for arts administrators to learn about ourselves, connect with other like-minded professionals, and get motivated. It’s pretty easy to get disenchanted with working in an industry trying to do social good and effect social change. This program helps put some of that in perspective, almost unintentionally, by forcing us to examine why we are in the field and why we want to help others and keep working in the arts as a career as opposed to other avenues. Additionally, the cumulative network from years of the program creates an alternative resource outside of formal education programs that is more accessible.

2020 Emerging Leaders Participant

The 2024 Emerging Leaders Program is made possible with the generous support of The Willem de Kooning Foundation. It is part of NYFA Learning, which includes professional development for artists and arts administrators. Sign up for NYFA’s free bi-weekly newsletter to receive updates on future programs.

Amy Aronoff
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