Acumen Regional Fellows Program

When Fellows join the Regional Fellows Program, they embark on a leadership journey. Over the course of the year, Fellows engage in deep reflection, challenge their assumptions about the world, and strengthen their moral compass. Through these programs, we hope to create an interconnected web of global leaders who share values, collaborate with each other, and drive change.

Apply Now for One of Our Regional Fellows Programs!

Applications for the 2016 Regional Fellows Programs in East Africa, India and Pakistan are now closed.

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East Africa

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Manjushree Girdhari Prerak Ram Floor


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Regional Fellows Training

During the course of a year-long program, Acumen Regional Fellows remain in their jobs and come together every 6-8 weeks for a series of 5 seminars focused on developing the skills needed to be the next generation of social change leaders. Acumen Fellows focus on gaining the financial expertise, operational expertise, and moral imagination necessary to solve the world’s toughest problems. In addition to developing the core areas of Acumen’s leadership model, Fellows meet with prominent leaders from across sectors and build relationships within their cohort and Acumen Fellows Alumni around the world.

DSC00617Seminar 1: Foundations of Leadership

The first seminar explores the meaning of a just society and the moral and historical foundation of social change through a series of curated readings of great thinkers such as Plato, Gandhi, Amartya Sen, Nelson Mandela and Binyavanga Wainaina.

Seminar 2: Adaptive Leadership & Moral Imagination

The second seminar delves into the nature of leadership and what is needed to mobilize people and resources in a rapidly changing world.

Seminar 3: Financial & Operational Skillsweb picture 5

The third seminar focuses on building financial and operational skills through experiential learning. Fellows learn the importance of human-centered design, experiment with building lean business models and acquire the tools to measure social impact.

Seminar 4: Learning Trip

The fourth seminar gives Fellows a deeper understanding of what is required to create systems change in their region through curated interactions with thought leaders and innovators in local communities.

Seminar 5: Leading into the Future

As the program comes to a close, Fellows reflect on their leadership journey, set goals to improve their work and make plans to stay connected before participating in a graduation ceremony.


Beyond the Fellowship

The fellowship is more than just a one-year program – it is the start of a lifelong leadership journey and the beginning of a lasting relationship with Acumen Fellows Alumni around the world.

Alumni Network

After graduating from any of our Fellows Programs – either East Africa, Pakistan, India, or Global – all of our Fellows join a single, united Fellows Alumni group. Acumen understands that leadership can be a lonely journey, and the Alumni body acts as a support system where Fellows can not only push each other but also collaborate to achieve their goals. Alumni are also actively involved in selecting future cohorts, get exclusive invitations to Acumen events, and receive a quarterly Alumni Newsletter. In addition, there are a number of examples of Alumni working together on new businesses and social impact initiatives.

Acumen’s Global Community

Alumni not only maintain their connection to their fellow Fellows, but also to Acumen’s extensive global community of advisors and peer organizations. Alumni have been able to leverage our network to gain connections to investors, job opportunities and mentors.

Click here to check out the latest Alumni Newsletter.

How to Apply

Who Becomes a Regional Fellow?

  • Entrepreneurs and leaders within organizations (for-profit, non-profit, and government) with a compelling social change project that has been operating for the last 2-3 years
  • Individuals who plan to continue developing their initiative for the duration of the program
  • Individuals with a deep passion and commitment to their region
  • Individuals with a proven track record of leadership and management responsibilities
  • Individuals with unrelenting perseverance, personal integrity and critical thinking skills

The Selection Process

The selection process for this program is very rigorous and highly competitive. Here is a general timeline of the process:

  • The applications for the Regional Fellows Program are closed now. Applications for the class of 2015 will go online in July/August 2014.
  • Telephone Interviews: October 2014
  • In-Person Interviews: November 2014
  • Final Selection: December 2014

The Application Process

The online application consists of:

  • Background information
  • Resume/CV
  • Two references
  • Short & long answer questions

Application Instructions: For more guidance on how to answer the application questions, please click here.

Frequently Asked Questions: For a list of Frequently Asked Questions and their answers, please click here.

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