The Emerging Leaders Development Program is no longer accepting applications for this year. Thank you for your interest!
AOTA’s Emerging Leaders Development Program gives students and new practitioners the tools and training to become strong leaders within occupational therapy to help the profession achieve the goals of the Centennial Vision. Selected participants receive leadership training, ongoing mentorship, and participation in current service opportunities that match each participant’s own leadership goals.
Invitation to Apply for the Program
The continued development of strong leaders within the profession is essential to achieving the goals we have for the Centennial Vision. The Emerging Leaders Development Program recognizes and develops those practitioners who have shown an initial dedication to the profession and service at the start of their career. The program provides selected candidates with leadership training and ongoing mentorship while identifying needs for service within AOTA.
Once candidates are chosen, they will receive formal face-to-face (2-day) training focusing on leadership development and other components of the program. Following this training, candidates will be paired with a mentor who currently holds a leadership position within the association, and will participate in service learning activities in which they fill a real need. Although candidates will develop leadership skills that could translate into their own practice, the goal of this program is to provide leadership training through association activities, not clinical growth mentoring.
This period of formal mentorship will continue for at least 1 year following the face-to-face training. Participant emerging leaders will also be expected to share their experiences via AOTA publications or formal and informal presentations.
Who Should Apply?
Candidates considered for this program may be occupational therapy or occupational therapy assistant students in the last year of their professional preparation, or new practitioners with 5 years or less experience. Candidates must also be current members of AOTA.
This is a program for individuals who desire to stay actively involved in AOTA leadership and volunteer opportunities after completing the training. Candidates must be able to commit to the following:
- Attendance at a fully funded, 2-day training at AOTA in Bethesda, Maryland, Thursday, August 15 through Friday, August 16, 2013. Travel and hotel costs (Wednesday & Thursday nights) will be covered by AOTA.
- Formal mentorship and training period of 12 months
- Completion of service learning activities, decided on during collaboration with their mentor
- An expectation of ongoing leadership service within AOTA for a period of time
It is the program's goal that the leadership training and experience inspire individuals to continue service within AOTA throughout their careers.
Applicants must submit:
- A personal letter of interest (no more than 3 pages, double-spaced, 12 point font) which describes why you see yourself as an emerging leader. In your narrative, please include the following:
- Please tell us specifically what you hope to accomplish in your career and professional life, listing any personal and professional goals as they relate to your leadership development.
- Discuss how or why you think your participation in the Emerging Leaders Development Program will help you to grow in your current role and achieve your goals. Specifically, please share how participation in this program will enable you to develop a trajectory toward leadership within AOTA.
- Include a list of your past and current leadership experiences (professional and community) and choose one example to describe how you most effectively demonstrated leadership. Please provide examples of how you were able to successfully lead others, citing any personal challenges and achievements during that particular experience
- Provide an explanation of how you see yourself benefitting from a structured mentoring relationship within the organizational structure of AOTA, and what you would bring to a mentoring partnership. Please also check the current AOTA Board priorities and list which priorities you would be interested in working towards. Although AOTA cannot guarantee that each candidate will be paired with a mentor who shares the same activity interests, we strive to do so within the parameters of the pool of available mentors.
- A strong reference letter from a current AOTA member who has first-hand knowledge of your leadership ability.
- The reference letter should provide a strong recommendation, as it accounts for approximately one-third of the total score in the selection process.
- Individuals providing the letter of reference may come from schools, existing AOTA leaders, or state associations.
- Reference letters should specifically address aspects of your personal character, leadership qualities you possess, your leadership potential, and the reference's opinion as to your appropriateness for this program and potential to successfully complete the program.
- Applicants will also be required to submit a signed copy of the Supervisory Form to verify eligibility for this program.
Applications should be submitted electronically no later than Monday, May 13. Application process opens Monday, April 15.
No hard copy applications will be considered. All documents required for submission should be uploaded to the submission site. If you have questions about the program itself, please contact Maureen Peterson at email@example.com; please direct all application submission questions to Varsha Stein at firstname.lastname@example.org.