NIH Executive Leadership Program


Offers GS 15 and SES (and equivalent) leaders an opportunity to refine their leadership skills with a small cohort of high-performing NIH executives. Through this 7-month program, leaders will have the opportunity to engage with scholar practitioners via interactive discussions, NIH case studies and experiential exercises. Participants will have the opportunity to directly engage with NIH leadership by working on projects, attending special events and receiving support from peer mentors.

The Partnership for Public Service, a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization with a mission to revitalize the government by transforming the way government works, is our new learning partner for the ExLP. The Partnership plays a critical role in developing more innovative and results-oriented leaders across the federal government through its many leadership programs, seminars, and team-building retreats.

The ExLP is a leadership experience for current and aspiring “Top 6” leaders:

  • IC Directors
  • IC Deputy Directors
  • Scientific Directors
  • Executive Officers
  • Clinical Directors
  • Scientific Executives
  • OD Leadership Positions

2020-2021 ExLP Program Dates

Session General Topics

July 29

NIH Campus - Lawton Chiles International House

The Beginning of the ExLP Journey – What to Expect
#1 Leadership and Self-Awareness
Sept 15-16
Emotional Intelligence, Executive Presence
NIH Special Event - Leadership Q&A with Dr. Francis Collins
September 24

Meet and Interact with the NIH Director
#2 Executive Communications
October 14-15
The Partnership for Public Service, Washington, DC
Media Training and Presentation Skills
NIH Special Event - Leadership Cafe with Top 6 Leadership
October 23

NIH Campus - Natcher, E1/E2
Conversation with Current "Top 6" Leaders
#3 Leading Amid Uncertainty
November 17-18

The Partnership for Public Service, Washington, DC
Stress Management, Resilience, Influence, Crisis Management
Action Learning Work-Out
December 3

The Partnership for Public Service, Washington, DC
Develop Recommendations for Critical NIH Issue
NIH Special Event - Leadership Cafe with NIH OD Deputy Directors
December 4

NIH Campus - Wilson Hall
Explore NIH's Organizational Priorities
#4 Leading Change
January 13-14, 2021

The Partnership for Public Service, Washington, DC
Change Management, Motivation and Conflict, Influence

#5 Commitment to Public Service
February 22-23, 2021

The Partnership for Public Service, Washington, DC

Collaborate Across Boundaries, Engage with HHS, Meet Members of Congress, Staffers and Key Officials on Capitol Hill

NIH Special Event - Supporting the NIH Mission 24/7 Tour

Hosted by ORF/ORS
February 24, 2021

NIH Campus - Natcher, E1/E2

Explore Main Campus Facilities Critical to NIH’s Mission
NIH Special Event - Visit to NIEHS
March 11-12, 2021

Durham, NC
Meet with NIEHS Leadership Team and Tour NIEHS Campus
March 17, 2021

NIH Campus - Lister Hill Auditorium, Building 38A
Celebrate Accomplishments

Participant Feedback

How has the ExLP helped you as a leader?

NIH ExLP Alumni

2020 ExLP Participants

2018 ExLP Participants

2016 ExLP Participants

2014 ExLP Participants

2013 ExLP Participants

2012 ExLP Participants

2011 ExLP Participants

2010 ExLP Participants

2020-2021 Tuition: $16,720

Please budget approximately an additional $700 for travel, lodging and per-diem to North Carolina (NIEHS site visit) in March, 2021.  

The application cycle for the 2020-2021 ExLP is closed. The call for nominations for the 2022-2023 program year will begin in January, 2022.

For general program questions, please contact Keisha Berkley, Program Manager, NIH Training Center at

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