LEarn More & Apply

Applications are open for the Leadership Academy!

The Leadership Academy is an eight-week educational fellowship in sustainable food systems leadership where you’ll be surrounded by like-minded, high-achieving peers who share your passion for making a real-world impact.

During the Leadership Academy you will: 

  • Examine the impact of our food system on the environment, society, public health, and animals
  • Build communications, advocacy, and leadership skills critical for advancing structural change on your campus and in your community
  • Secure invaluable networking and mentorship opportunities with peers and leaders
  • Explore potential career paths in policy & law, innovation & entrepreneurship, media arts & journalism, health & well-being, and organizing & campaigning

‍The Leadership Academy is offered on a pay-what-you-can basis.

Interested in learning more about the Leadership Academy before you apply? Register for one our upcoming info sessions:

  • Monday, May 20 at 7p ET / 4p PT - Register
  • Thursday, May 30 at 7p ET / 4p PT - Register

Fellowship Curriculum

Throughout the eight-week educational fellowship, we’ll look at factory farming through the following lenses:

Policy & Law

Learn how civic engagement and the legislative process can be leveraged to create a more just and sustainable food system.

Innovation & Entrepreneurship

Explore how technology and business can come together to build momentum to support the end of factory farming.

Organizing &

Hear firsthand how students like you are building a people-powered plant-based global movement — and how you can bring this movement to your campus and community.

Health & Well-Being

Understand the harms factory farming inflicts upon human and ecological well-being, and how to foster flourishing communities.

Media Arts & Journalism

Discover the power of storytelling to influence public opinion and create real-world impact.

Three days per week, you’ll have four hours of comprehensive programming consisting of:

Leadership Labs

Learn what it means to be an effective leader, understand your own strengths and areas for growth, and develop critical competencies for making a meaningful impact through experiential activities and discussion-based learning.

Core Seminars

Deepen your understanding of the problems inherent in industrial animal agriculture and the existing efforts to address them by hearing from and engaging with thought leaders and subject matter experts in a series of lectures, workshops, and fireside chats.

Community Hours

Explore new interests, ignite your creativity, and build lasting relationships through fun and interactive sessions that will leave you feeling energized and inspired to make a difference.

Guided Discussion

Broaden your perspectives, challenge your assumptions, and cultivate a systems thinking mindset through collaborative conversations with small peer groups.

The schedule:

  • The fellowship runs from June 25th - August 15th
  • Core programming takes place three days per week (Tues - Thurs), from 9am - 1pm PST // 12pm - 4pm EST
  • There will be approximately 1.5 - 2.5 hours per week of assigned reading and assignments each week

*There will be no programming on Thursday, July 4th.

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Learning Journey

In the Leadership Academy, you will gain the tools to build the foundation for structural change in your institutions and communities. You will have the option to apply to continue in the academic-year fellowship, which runs for the fall and spring terms. In the academic-year fellowship, each fellow works with New Roots Institute and a partner organization towards an individualized campaign to drive change on their campus and in their communities. Fellows receive coaching, mentorship, and access to learning and career development opportunities. More information, including how to apply, will be provided during the Leadership Academy. 

Note: If you are interested in joining the academic-year fellowship, but are unable to join the Leadership Academy this summer, please reach out to leo@newrootsinstitute.org. We will keep you updated on future opportunities.


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Teaching Team

Program Leads


Hear from alumni

“New Roots Institute [is] where I discovered that it's not just climate, but the well-being of all species that truly matters... I'm excited to express my dedication and share my research [at] the Climate Justice and Health Lab at NYU.” - Pooja Sharma, Leadership Academy, Summer 2023
“I came to New Roots very unsure of my potential for advocacy, but your encouragement through the program helped me see how I can merge positive change and animal rights with my career goals, and that the work doesn't have to end with New Roots!“ - Bethel Mengisto, Leadership Academy, Summer 2023

Student Successes

Plant-Based Defaults

In the last two years, our students had successful plant-based default campaigns at Cornell University, the Issaquah School District in Seattle, Pomona College, and San Diego State University.

Campus Coalitions

One of our fellows organized a broad-based coalition at New York University to lock in the plant-based commitments secured by former New Roots Institute students on campus.


In the last year, our fellows organized very successful veg fest events at the University of California Los Angeles and Pomona College. These events were attended by over 1100 people!

Schools with Current Students

Our Alumni Have Gone On To Work For