Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Executive Nurse Fellows
The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Executive Nurse Fellows program is a three-year advanced leadership program for nurses who aspire to lead and shape health care locally and nationally. Fellows strengthen and improve their leadership abilities and learn to apply them to improving health and health care.
Each year the RWJF Executive Nurse Fellows program selects a cohort of up to 20 highly qualified nurses in senior executive positions to participate in a three-year fellowship. Major components of the leadership development program include:
- Advanced curriculum, employing best practices from the field of leadership development, delivered through face-to-face program sessions and technology-facilitated intersession activities (Years 1–3);
- Intensive and ongoing executive coaching from Center for Creative Leadership executive coaches (Years 1–3);
- Team-based action learning and implementation of team projects (Years 1–2);
- Self-directed, individual leadership development activities and implementation of a bold individual leadership project (Years 2–3);
- Opportunity for post-program leadership development activities; and
- Membership in the nationwide Executive Nurse Fellows and RWJF networks.
While the program allows fellows to remain at their home institutions, program activities will require a substantial time commitment over the course of the three-year fellowship. The time commitment for the program varies by month and year, but fellows should expect to attend two three-day sessions each year during Years 1 and 2, and three in Year 1, including one five-day session. Fellows will also participate in face-to-face Action Learning Team meetings, calls, and interactions. Fellows will spend an average of four to six hours each week engaged in all program-related activities. The program returns value to employing organizations by enhancing fellows’ leadership skills and effectiveness in meeting organizational and societal health care goals.
RWJF Executive Nurse Fellows awards are open to registered nurses who hold senior leadership positions in health services, scientific and academic organizations, public health and community-based organizations or systems, and national professional, governmental, and policy organizations.
Applicant organizations must be based in the United States or its territories.
Individual candidates for receipt of award funds must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents at the time of application.
Individual candidates for receipt of award funds must have the support of their employing organization to fully engage in all curricular, action-learning, and leadership project components of the program. Applicant organizations must have the administrative and financial capacity and experience to accept the award on behalf of the fellow and be able to comply with all reporting requirements. Individual candidates who work for an organization that lacks this capacity or experience, or who work for a sole proprietorship or single-member LLC may not be eligible to apply. Please contact the national program office with questions on eligibility.
Consistent with RWJF values, this program embraces diversity and inclusion across multiple dimensions, such as race, ethnicity, gender, age, and disadvantaged socioeconomic status. We strongly encourage applications that will help us expand the perspectives and experiences we bring to our work. We believe that the more we include diverse perspectives and experiences in our work, the better we are able to help all Americans live healthier lives and get the care they need.
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The Executive Nurse Fellows program is the best professional gift of my career. It has prepared me to be a driver of change in health care and has made it possible for me to lead a statewide effort to tackle diabetes. As clinical director of the New York State Health Foundation’s Diabetes Campaign, I’m working to improve clinical care and patient outcomes, and to promote policy solutions that will deliver more comprehensive, coordinated care. I’m also collaborating with partners and staff to mobilize communities to expand our community and policy efforts. What I learned in the program is helping to make me more effective, every step of the way.