Lead for America

Multiple Locations,
United States
Term: Academic Year

Bridging the divide between local government and aspiring young leaders through two-year placements in local government positions nationwide

Lead for America bridges the divide between local governments and aspiring young leaders by recruiting, training and placing talented and diverse college graduates in local government positions nationwide for a paid two-year fellowship. Over the course of the two years, LFA Fellows will gain a new perspective and appreciation for local government, understand the most pressing issues facing our communities, be equipped with tools to enact communal and systemic change, establish relationships with partner universities and organizations, and gain opportunities to engage with a growing alumni network of passionate leaders who together will continue to serve as transformational public service leaders in communities across the nation.

Lead for America offers two fellowship tracks: Hometown Fellows and Lead for North Carolina. Hometown Fellows will be placed in local governments anywhere in the country with which they have a strong personal connection to: this could include the place where they grew up, where they went to college, or where they have other strong ties. Hometown Fellows will also receive extensive training, with the length and nature of the training dependent on the placement site. LFA staff will work closely with all selected Hometown Fellows to procure their placements. Both Lead for North Carolina and Hometown Fellows will attend a one week conference in Washington, D.C. during the summer, and will receive parallel support structures, fellowship experiences, and alumni benefits.

Lead for North Carolina Fellows will be matched with a local city or county government office in North Carolina. In addition, these Fellows will receive 5 weeks of training at the Lead for America Summer Institute at UNC-Chapel Hill to prepare them for their work in local governance.


  • US Citizen, Permanent Resident, or DACA Recipient.
  • If in college, be on track to graduate by July of this year, and if graduated, have earned undergraduate degree in the last two years.
  • Have not obtained an MPA.

Apply to Lead for America Here.

Fact Sheet

Arts and Architecture, Foreign Language Learning, Humanities, Social Sciences, STEM
Columbia Alumna/us, Columbia College, Columbia Engineering, Columbia General Studies, Senior, U.S. Citizen, U.S. Permanent Resident
Fellowship Type:
Experiential, Public Service
Multiple Locations,
United States
Academic Year

Dates & Deadlines

Academic Year
Application Deadline: 
Wednesday, November 30, 2022
Those interested in LFNC are encouraged to submit their application early, as the deadline above reflects the final cycle of the application process.