On February 18 and 25, members of the Princeton AlumniCorps community, along with friends and colleagues, gathered in Washington, DC, and New York City to celebrate the newly-graduated cohort of Emerging Leaders. This year’s thirty-two program graduates represent a range of nonprofit organizations addressing issues from educational equity to environmental justice locally, nationally, and internationally. As Program Leader Margaret Crotty ’94 noted at the New York closing, “Emerging Leaders fills an important gap in the nonprofit sector by helping very talented young nonprofit managers grow into confident, skillful, and resilient leaders with more support, tools, and practical knowledge than is available on the job, and with access to insights and connections they couldn’t easily reach.”
The receptions marked the completion of the program’s fifth year. In June 2015, the 2015-16 cohort began meeting for monthly sessions to engage with a curriculum that pushed their understanding of leadership. Through skill-based activities, mentorship, and discussions with subject experts, participants were coached in nonprofit finance, public speaking, fundraising, and board relations and governance. For other topics, such as emotional intelligence, team dynamics, and self-awareness, participants were encouraged to engage with their peers through individual and group coaching, monthly readings, and stretch goals. Emerging Leaders are guided through the custom-designed curriculum by facilitators Hilary Joel ’85 in Washington and Yael Sivi in New York.
Like other AlumniCorps programs, Emerging Leaders builds the capacity of individuals and the organizations they serve to tackle pressing systemic challenges. During the celebrations guests heard directly from Emerging Leaders about the impact of the program on their careers and organizations. Testimonials emphasized the power of peer coaching, the guided application of new skills through stretch projects, and the importance of learning from guest speakers who have spent their lives working to address public issues. Emerging Leader Jimmy Kelly, who directs the PrepNext program at DC Prep, summarized the value of the program in this way: “Emerging Leaders elevates the brilliance of everyone in the room.”
For more photos from the closing celebrations, visit the AlumniCorps Facebook page.
Emerging Leaders is made possible by a lead grant from American Express, the Harris Finch Foundation, and generous individual donations. We are grateful to Gelman, Rosenberg & Freedman CPAs, Covington & Burling LLP, Margaret Crotty and Rory Riggs, and Locus Analytics for sponsoring and hosting this year’s closing celebrations.