Apply for the 2020 Leadership INSTITUTE


About the Program

The CAUSE Leadership Institute (CLI), is a six-month fellowship program that develops visionary leaders who can effectively advocate for the Asian Pacific American (APA) community.

Through CLI, fellows are empowered with the knowledge, access, and network to embark on their own civic leadership pathways. Fellows emerge from the program prepared to support, advocate, and serve as leaders of the APA community. Every CLI session is rooted in a comprehensive curriculum that ensures fellows receive continuous exposure to the qualities that make a CAUSE leader.

CLI Fellows graduate the program with dedication to lead change in their industry and build cross-sector connections for positive change. They will have a renewed respect for the complex intricacies of our civic landscape, as well as fresh perspectives and vision on how to effectively navigate that landscape. CLI Fellows will be equipped to be the leading changemakers on behalf of the APA community.

The program was co-founded by CAUSE and USC Dornsife’s Jesse M. Unruh Institute of Politics to ensure a pipeline of political and civic leadership for the APA community.

Duration: January 2020 – June 2020 (6 months)

Time Commitment: Mandatory monthly full-day trainings

Program Cost: $400 ($200 upfront, $200 before graduation), $100 security deposit*

*All accepted CLI fellows must submit a $100 security deposit to ensure satisfactory completion of the program. The deposit will not be returned if you do not complete the program according to the policies described above, or if you choose to donate the deposit.

Limited scholarships are available if tuition is cost prohibitive.


aPPLICANT Qualifications

  • Minimum GPA of 3.2

  • Graduating high school seniors, undergraduates, and recent graduates not enrolled in any graduate degree programs

  • Able to commute and arrive to designated program activities on time

  • Must be able to attend and actively participate during all mandatory events

  • Priority will be given to Southern California residents


Application Checklist

Please submit your application by February 28, 2019 at 11:59 PM PST.

Before filling out the application, please have the following components ready:

  • Your professional resume ready to upload in PDF format.

  • Signed Terms & Conditions form (download here) ready to upload in PDF format.

  • Responses to the below short response questions ready to copy/paste into the form.

The Selection Process

Candidates will be selected on the basis of demonstrated academic and personal excellence, demonstrated leadership capabilities, and a commitment to serving their community. Priority will be given to students interested in working in Southern California communities in their post-college careers. All application materials must be received by CAUSE via email by Thursday, February 28, 2019 at 11:59 PM PST.

All applications will be reviewed and top candidates will be asked to participate in a personal interview with the CAUSE Leadership Academy Interview Committee. Top candidates will interview on Saturday, March 16, 2019 at the CAUSE office located in Pasadena, CA. Candidates not in Southern California will interview via Skype during business hours between Monday, March 11, 2019 and Friday, March 15, 2019. Applicants should plan in advance and leave their schedules open. Decisions will be made towards the beginning of March.