LEADERSHIP INSTITUTE
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

1. WHO SHOULD APPLY?

YNPN members currently working in the nonprofit/social sector who have 5-7 years professional  experience. This program best fits individuals who have had experience managing projects and  other people and who are looking to advance in the near future. To be successful, participants  should have the support of their current employers, which includes having time off to attend  monthly sessions and having the opportunity to apply new skills in the workplace.

2. WHAT BENEFITS DOES THIS PROGRAM BRING TO THE APPLICANT?

Applicants are not only introduced to a curriculum that focuses on building leadership skills, but  they are also matched to a mentor that will provide one-on-one guidance. Furthermore, the  Leadership Institute uses a cohort model that allows for meaningful relationships to develop  among participants, facilitators, and the YNPN Chicago network. These networks remain in  place long after the sessions have concluded.

3. WHAT BENEFITS WOULD THIS PROGRAM BRING TO AN APPLICANT’S EMPLOYER?

Whereas some leadership programs teach skills that are meant to be employed once individuals  become part of the leadership team, YNPN’s leadership program focuses on teaching skills and  creating awareness that can be used now (at mid-level career) and in the future. We anticipate  participants gaining insight and skills that will immediately impact their work performance.  Additionally, participants are often introduced to new tools and ideas that they take back to  share with their teams.

4. HOW MUCH OF A TIME COMMITMENT IS THIS PROGRAM?

The program meets for ten, three-hour sessions on a monthly basis from January through October 2023. Some additional time is required outside of monthly sessions in order to complete assignments  such as reading articles and keeping a journal. In addition, participants are expected to meet with their mentor on a monthly basis. However, the time and duration of those meetings are up to the discretion of the mentor and mentee.

5. WHAT ARE THE HIGHLIGHTS OF THIS PROGRAM?

The LI’s curriculum is both internally and externally focused. Content focuses on self-awareness  which enables one to build upon their own leadership style, as well as developing skills that are  crucial to communication, management and strategic planning. Participants will also gain  access to tools that enable them to better understand the sector as a whole, as well as key  facets of successful organizational operating strategies.

6. HOW BIG ARE THE COHORTS?

The 2023 cohort will have between 12 and 15 participants.

7. WHERE AND WHEN WILL THE SESSIONS TAKE PLACE?

Three sessions will be held in person and seven sessions will be hosted on Zoom from 9am to noon on a Friday of each month. Location for in person sessions will be provided with advanced notice. Dates for the 2023 Leadership Institute are as follows: January 27 (in-person), February 24, March 31, April 28, May 26 (in-person), June 30, July 28, August 25, September 29, October 27 (in-person).

8. HOW MUCH DOES THE PROGRAM COST?

As part of our core mission, we are able to keep the cost of Leadership Institute low compared to other leadership programs. We are able to do this through the generosity of community partners and with the help of grant support.


We encourage participants to seek employer funding for participation in this program on the following sliding scale:

- Organizational budget under $2 million: $400

- Organizational budget between $2 and 5 million: $525

- Organizational budget between $5 and 10 million: $775

- Organizational budget over $10 million: $950


However, we realize that professional development funds available to employees can be limited. Participants may therefore choose to pay for the program individually at the cost of $400. If finance is a barrier to participating, please continue with your application and we are happy to discuss potential solutions including a discounted rate, monthly payment plans, etc. Any requests for financial assistance will influence the selection process.

9. WHAT IS THE APPLICATION PROCESS?

All applicants are required to submit an application, resume, and letter of reference/support. You can view the application preview here. After the application deadline, applications are reviewed in a blind selection process by a committee composed of YNPN Chicago board members. There is no interview process. All applicants will be notified of final decisions by mid-December.

10. WHEN DO I NEED TO APPLY BY?

Applications are due Friday, December 2, 2022 by 5:00 PM.

11. WHAT IF I CAN’T COMPLETE THE PROGRAM?

One of the criteria selection committee members take into account when selecting the cohort is a expressed commitment to completing the full ten months of the program. However, we understand when and if conflicts arise that make it impossible for a cohort member to complete the program. However, YNPN Chicago is unable to offer refunds unless a program is canceled. We apologize for any inconvenience this causes. As a volunteer-run nonprofit organization, all event fees help support our work of providing programs and resources to young professionals.


Thank you for understanding!

12. STILL HAVE QUESTIONS?

Please send any questions to leadershipinstitute@ynpnchicago.org.

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