Colman Leadership Program

Colman Leadership Program

The Colman Leadership Program is a bi-annual event (offered in January and June) that seeks to enroll 25-30 PhD* students for an intensive 4-day program focused on providing participants with skills and knowledge that will support their development as leaders in graduate school and beyond.

Program Goals

The Colman Leadership Program will introduce a range of practical skills, theory pertaining to leadership, and special topics relevant for application in both academic and professional contexts. With a varied format including readings, interactive group activities, case studies, discussions, student presentations and professionally conducted workshop sessions, program participants will learn about leadership, develop practical skills for negotiation and conflict resolution. Participants will also discuss modes of translating collaborative teamwork and the positive, productive employment of the diverse  perspectives and backgrounds students bring to the program.

Specifically, program participants will focus on:

  • Self-awareness as a leadership skill
  • Extend self-awareness to effective interpersonal dynamics
  • Appreciating fundamental group dynamics
  • Understanding of how to create teams from groups
  • Appreciating diversity in all contexts
  • Differentiating between role authority and leadership in an organizational context
  • Learning skills of integration and synthesis

Program Background

The Colman Leadership Program is made possible by an endowed gift to the College of Engineering from the Colman Family and is jointly sponsored by Diversity Programs in Engineering and the Graduate School Office of Inclusion & Student Engagement.

* Art department MFA students are also invited to apply, given that the MFA is the terminal degree and the degree commonly held by faculty in your field.   ^ Return to top of page



Click to Open

Consideration will be given to applications from PhD* students from all backgrounds (domestic and international).

Admitted students who commit to enrolling in the Colman Leadership Program must commit to participating in the full program. The program does not permit late arrivals or early departures on any of the programs dates.

January Session Priority Application Consideration:

  • PhD students with Cornell Colman or Sloan Fellowships
  • Students in Year 3 or later of their PhD studies.
  • Students in the following Sloan graduate fields
    • Aerospace Engineering
    • Applied & Engineering Physics
    • Applied Mathematics
    • Biochemistry
    • Molecular & Cell Biology
    • Biological Engineering
    • Biomedical Engineering
    • Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering
    • Civil & Environmental Engineering
    • Computer Science
    • Ecology & Evolutionary Biology
    • Electrical & Computer Engineering
    • Genetics, Genomics & Development
    • Geological Sciences
    • Immunology & Infectious Disease
    • Material Science & Engineering
    • Mechanical Engineering
    • Natural Resources
    • Operations Research & Information Engineering
    • Theoretical & Applied Mechanics

June Session Priority Applicant Consideration:

  • Graduate School Dean's Scholars with the following fellowships and affiliations:
    • Cornell Colman Fellowship
    • Cornell Sloan Fellowship
    • Dean's Excellence Fellowship
    • SUNY Diversity Fellowship
    • McNair Graduate Fellowship
    • Provost Diversity Fellowship
    • Bouchet Honor Society

How to Apply

Click to Open

Check back later for a link to the online application

Online Application general contents:

  • Demographic information
  • Upload CV
  • Brief questions about your leadership experience, desired outcomes of your participation, and career goals
  • Supplemental questions to be used as a baseline for evaluating program impact

The January session application typically opens in November and closes in December of the preceding year.

The June session application typically opens in April and closes in May of the current year.