Leadership Emerging in Academic Departments (LEAD) Program for Junior Faculty Physicians and Scientists 

LEAD Program logo

Learn to Lead!

Explore and Develop Your Leadership Potential

Program Goals

Leadership is about influence and the ability to make things happen, not just “being in charge.” Therefore, leadership skills are critically important for faculty success at any stage of the academic career.

  • The LEAD Program is designed for junior faculty who aspire to develop their leadership skills.
  • Curriculum includes modules in self-discovery, communication, influence, negotiation, difficult conversations, and inspiring trust.
  • Format includes didactic courses, case studies, and experiential activities. Participants work with an executive coach and anchor the LEAD learning objectives with an individual Capstone Leadership Project.

LEAD Program Curriculum

The 2024 LEAD program begins December 2023 and includes 8 monthly three-hour sessions on Fridays from 1:30 to 4:30 p.m. through November 2024. See full curriculum.

Capstone Leadership Project

Between February and October 2024, each LEAD Program participant will develop an individual Capstone project that identifies and proposes to address a current leadership, management, policy, or practice improvement challenge confronting his/her unit at UT Southwestern Medical Center (e.g., clinic, lab, research, or education team, division, department, or center).

LEAD Program participants will have considerable latitude to select problems of immediate relevance to their own professional practice and/or research and education. LEAD Program faculty provide feedback and refinements on proposed projects. It is not required that the Capstone project be implemented. All capstone projects will be presented during a late spring presentation series as well as presented at a poster session in the fall.


Assistant Professors (must have completed one year in rank) and Associate Professors (less than four years in rank) are eligible. All are welcome to apply who are eligible. Underrepresented in medicine faculty are particularly encouraged to apply.


We are currently accepting applications for LEAD 2024!

The following materials must be submitted:


Our team of directors, co-directors, and faculty include internationally recognized physicians, researchers, and administrators.


The LEAD Program is offered at no cost to the participants or their sponsors.