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, inspiring trust, and embracing diversity.
  • 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 2022 LEAD program begins December 2021 and includes 10 monthly four-hour sessions on Fridays from 1 to 5 p.m. through December 2022. See full curriculum.

Capstone Leadership Project

Between February and October 2022, 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 summer lunch series as well as presented at a poster session in the fall.


Assistant Professors and Associate Professors (fewer than four years in rank) are eligible. Underrepresented in medicine faculty are particularly encouraged to apply.


Note: We are no longer accepting applications for LEAD 2022.

The following materials must be submitted:

  • A completed online application.
  • Curriculum vitae in standardized UT Southwestern P&T Format (Word template also is available at W:\PUB\SMSDEAN\Promotion and Tenure) uploaded along with the completed online application. 
  • New! We no longer accept letters of recommendation. Instead, our program team will send an evaluation form directly to the applicant’s chair after a completed application is submitted.


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


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