Frequently Asked Questions

Applications for organizations interested in hosting a 2021-2023 Emerging Leader Fellow are now open.


  • September 11 – Organizations submit a two-page abstract describing the project they are interested in pursuing with an Emerging Leader Fellow.
  • September 26 – Stoneleigh notifies organizations about whether they are invited to submit a full proposal.
  • October 19 – Invited organizations submit full proposals to Stoneleigh.
  • November 11 – Stoneleigh notifies organizations about whether they are approved to enter the next phase of the application process, which involves recruiting potential Fellows.
  • November 17 – Approved organizations publicize the project and Fellowship opportunity broadly through their networks. Stoneleigh also advertises the projects. Fellowship candidates apply directly to—and are interviewed by—the host organization.
  • January 19, 2021 – Organizations then submit information about their final proposed Fellowship candidate to Stoneleigh.
  • January 25-27, 2021 – Stoneleigh interviews Fellowship finalists and their proposed supervisors.
  • March 4, 2021 – Stoneleigh staff present recommended candidates and projects to the Board for approval, and organizations and candidates are notified about whether they have been approved for funding.

The Emerging Leader Fellowship lasts for two years. The 2021-2023 Emerging Leader Fellowships will begin in September 2021 and continue through September 2023.

More information about Stoneleigh’s priorities can be found on the issue area pages for youth justicechild welfareeducation, and health.

Projects must have an impact on policy and practice that affects young people in Greater Philadelphia. Typically, our Fellows work directly within or alongside systems in Philadelphia that serve these youth. However, we also consider projects that focus on systems change in Greater Philadelphia; seek to effect change at the state level in Pennsylvania; or work on a national policy that affects young people in Philadelphia.

Stoneleigh staff and external expert reviewers use the following criteria to evaluate proposals:

  • Alignment with Stoneleigh’s Mission: The project clearly aligns with the Foundation’s overall mission to improve the life outcomes of young people by advancing change in the systems that serve them.
  • Urgency: The proposal demonstrates there is a timely need for this project.
  • Feasibility: The scope of the project fits within the time and resources allotted by the Fellowship. If the project requires collaboration with other stakeholders (system partners or organizations) or access to data, the necessary supports and/or approvals have been secured.
  • Organizational Capacity: The problem to be addressed is aligned with the host organization’s overall mission and strategy, the project will strengthen the organization’s work over the long term, and the organization has the capacity to effectively supervise an Emerging Leader Fellow.
  • Learning Potential: The project will provide the Fellowship candidate with sufficient opportunities to develop professionally and learn new skills, and there will be robust support and supervision for the Fellow.

Overall, we are looking for projects that not only help advance the host organization’s work, but also have the potential to add value to the field more broadly.

The Fellowship award goes directly to the host organization and includes funds for the Fellow’s salary, benefits, and taxes. Salary is $60,000 in Year 1, with a 3% increase in Year 2. Stoneleigh also provides up to $2,500 for professional development expenses annually. All final budgets are approved by Stoneleigh.

In addition to financial support, we provide Fellows with the connections and exposure to advance their project goals and promote their professional development. For example, we intentionally foster a sense of community among our current and former Fellows and provide opportunities to exchange ideas across disciplines and focus areas. We also offer opportunities to disseminate findings to other funders and influencers, both locally and nationally.

Emerging Leader Fellow supervisors play a unique and critical role. They not only directly oversee the Fellow’s work, but also serve as mentors and provide connections to professional development opportunities. Specifically, supervisors are expected to:

  • Collaborate with the Fellow to develop a work plan and support project implementation
  • Meet regularly with the Fellow to supervise the project and provide mentorship
  • Support the Fellow’s professional development and identify opportunities to build leadership skills
  • Work with the Fellow to finalize project deliverables, identify opportunities to share findings, and support the project’s overall impact and sustainability

We closely examine the capacity of each proposed supervisor to fulfill these obligations through detailed questions in the project proposal and an in-person interview.

The Emerging Leader Fellowship is intended to provide individuals with the opportunity to lead a project and gain valuable hands-on experience. Unlike a staff position, which includes day-to-day tasks related to the ongoing operations of an organization, a Fellowship is a focused project with discrete goals. Furthermore, opportunities for professional development are built into project goals and pursued throughout the Fellowship. These opportunities may include attending conferences, presenting, and networking with leaders in the field.

While we do not have a set number of awards, we awarded 5 Fellowships for the 2019-2021 Emerging Leader Fellow cohort.

Yes, organizations may submit more than one abstract per Fellowship cycle.

We recognize that advancing change in policy and practice is often best accomplished when organizations work in collaboration. As such, we welcome proposals that are developed collaboratively; however, only one organization may serve as the designated host and the fiscal agent for the Fellowship funds.

Yes. We’d be happy to review revised proposals and/or new ideas from organizations whose projects were not previously advanced.

Yes, however, organizations that are currently hosting a Fellow are ineligible to apply.

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