Next Generation Leaders Program, McCain Institute

Publish Date: Jun 15, 2021

This article will introduce you to the Next Generation Leaders Program at McCain Institute: a program that helps individuals from different parts of the world develop leadership skills and commit to those fields and communities, who need them the most. Read on for steps you need to become among the next generation of exceptional leaders. 

More details on the Next Generation Leaders Program

The Next Generation Leaders Program is the flagship program of the McCain Institute. It has actively operated since 2013 and has formed a robust global network of leaders in different locations and areas as a result. 

The program's primary mission is to empower, train, and prepare individuals with leadership skills from the United States and other countries. 

The geographical distribution of the program is genuinely diverse: 51 countries from 5 continents, where the program has alumni of more than 65 leaders. To make the program effective, the selected participants get the chance to cooperate with many global organizations, including those from the Fortune 100 list. 

The program offers professional and personal development training for each selected future leader for around nine months. The most emphasis is put on ethics, value, and character-driven leadership. The primary outcome of the program is that program participants later return to their home countries and benefit local communities with their developed leadership programs. 

The mentioned training takes place in America, NYC. Therefore, those candidates living outside the country need to move to the US for the program duration. Those permanently residing in the US move to the program's required locations and communities within the US. 

How does the program specifically support leaders?  

The program's main component is supporting the program participants to develop an individual Leadership Action Plan, which will be later implemented in support of their local communities. For this purpose, the program provides the general introductory training at the beginning of the program, then distributes the participants to different locations in the US, each in their chosen professional direction. 

The initial training that all participants receive is conducted in Washington DC. That is a coaching module, where program participants focus on ethics, media, communication, best practices of American business, civic and political life, etc. 

Later, depending on the profession of each program participant, they are directed to different organizations in different parts of the US, where their work positions help them explore more insights into their chosen field of specialty. 

During all the program duration, NGLs work on developing their Leadership Action Plan. That's the step-by-step plan of actions that the NGLs will later implement in their home countries to develop certain fields. 

Even after developing the Action Plan and finishing the program, the McCain Institute keeps the connections with its alumni. Participants can keep in touch with the Institute via the leading communication platform with alumni: NGL Global Network.

The program lasts for nine months each year: from early September to late May. 

What are the eligibility criteria?

As you might guess from the diversification of geographical locations of the program, there are no specific requirements of the country of residence for the potential candidates. The eligibility criteria include:

  • Applicants should be in their mid-careers, typically 30-40 y.o (typically, but not strictly limited)

  • They should possess working proficiency in English

  • They should make notable achievements in professional, academic, or work environments

In addition to the mentioned, candidates should show a strong commitment to returning to their home countries after the end of the program's duration. 

*Full-time students or full-time academics are not eligible for the program. 

How to apply? | Nomination is not required

The application can be submitted by individuals qualifying themselves for the main eligibility criteria. Unlike many other similar programs, the application does not necessarily require the Nomination of third parties. However, the option of being nominated or nominating someone else is not excluded from the program. 

There is sufficient time between the nomination and application deadlines so that the nominated candidates have sufficient time to prepare their applications as required. 

The application should be submitted online via the Next Generation Leaders application portal. The application form and all the supporting details will appear on the page if you enter it during the period of the open applications. 

The deadline for Nomination is at the end of January. 

The deadline for the application is mid-February. The application opens in November each year. 

More initiatives | Train the Trainer

The Train the Trainer, is the special toolkit developed by the McCain Institute to support the NFL's training in their local communities. This is especially useful considering that NGLs have an obligation to provide character-driven leadership training to at least 100 people each year. 

The toolkit consists of all the knowledge that NGLs personally receive during the Next Generation Leaders program. Here, the whole course content is condensed into a single source and is developed for all levels of training: starting from basic to advanced. 

Later, the toolkit significantly supports NGLs in providing the training. They adapt their designed courses to the toolkit information. 

McCain Institute and Alumni

McCain Institute is created inspired by the leadership of Senator John McCain and his family member's legacy of public service. The Institute operates at Arizona State University and actively promotes character-driven leadership. 

As already mentioned, the Institute has a large community of alumni who stay connected and maintained working and personal relationships even after completing the program. The Alumni Club of McCain Institute welcomes the participants of its programs or any other individuals related to the Institute before joining the big community. Alumni join their efforts to support the McCain Institute and its initiatives through their membership fees. The minimum yearly membership fee for joining Alumni Club is $250.

For more information on the McCain Institute and the ways, you can benefit from its initiatives, visit the official website

Similar Opportunities



Study Levels

Non Degree

Opportunity Types


Eligible Countries


Host Countries

United States