Image Left: Rani Pramesti, 2022 Young Leaders Forum Scholarship recipient.

  • Applications for 2023 have now closed.
  • All applicants will be advised on the outcome of their scholarship application by the end of July 2023.

McKinsey & Company and the Australian Scholarships Foundation are offering up to 100 emerging leaders from the not-for-profit sector the opportunity to apply for a scholarship to attend McKinsey’s Rising Leaders Forum (previously named Young Leaders Forum) in October 2023.

Program Overview

A foundational leadership program designed to accelerate the development of rising leaders. 

Emerging leaders are operating in an increasingly complex and ambiguous context. Leadership teams know that great leadership talent is scarce. It is great leaders at all levels of an organisation – more than rewards, job opportunities, and the company itself – that drive distinctive outcomes and engagement at scale. With a focus on strengths and stretch, the Rising Leaders Forum develops unique, inspirational, and supportive leaders through the layers of your organisation. 

During the program participants will:

  • Attend a 3-day virtual event to explore their personal leadership and the foundations of leading high-performing teams 
  • Explore concepts in small groups of participants and create an external support network for ongoing peer coaching and support. 

Course dates for 2023

Virtual forum: Midday, Tuesday, 24 October – Midday, Friday, 27 October 2023 

Who should apply 

The Rising Leaders Forum is designed to benefit high-potential future leaders with approximately 7-12 years of work experience.  Participants are typically making the transition into people leader roles and ‘stepping up’ to take on greater degrees of responsibility for driving business unit strategy and execution.

Olivia Myeza Headshot

“The McKinsey Young Leaders Forum was incredible. At the start of the course, the facilitators told us to watch out for our ‘breakthrough moment’ during the course. Mine came during the morning of the 2nd day. I realised that though I’m not currently in a leadership position, leadership is something within me – a gifting – that I will use again. I’m excited about leading safe, empowered, collaborative teams in the future, armed with a new level of insight about all things leadership.”

– Olivia Myeza is the State Manager for VIC/TAS at Opportunity International. In 2022, Olivia was the recipient of the McKinsey Young Leaders Forum Scholarship.

Scholarship inclusions

There are up to 100 scholarships available to staff and directors of not-for-profit organisations Australia-wide thanks to McKinsey’s generous contribution and commitment to not-for-profit development. Each scholarship is valued at $4,000 and will grant recipients full access to the Rising Leaders Forum.  

Employer contribution

This scholarship requires an Employer Contribution of $880 + GST from each recipient’s supporting not-for-profit organisation. This amount is payable to the Australian Scholarships Foundation following written acceptance from the scholarship recipient and upon receipt of an invoice.  

What is the Employer Contribution?  The Employer Contribution is paid directly to the Australian Scholarships Foundation and allows us to expand the number of high-quality programs we can provide, assists with service delivery costs and enables us to invest in research and development that strengthens the NFP sector. The Employer Contribution is a way for not-for-profits to facilitate learning and development for their organisation via a small contribution to any scholarships the Australian Scholarships Foundation awards to their employees. McKinsey does not receive any portion of this contribution. 

Find out more about the Employer Contribution here

Key scholarship dates

Monday, 15 May 2023Applications open
Sunday, 25 June 2023Applications close
Monday, 31 July 2023Scholarships awarded
Friday, 11 August 2023Written acceptance from scholarship recipients required
Tuesday, 24 October – Friday, 27 October 2023Rising Leaders Forum (virtual)
Please reserve these important dates in your calendar. 

Eligibility criteria 

Applicants must:  

  • Be an Australian Citizen or Permanent Resident  
  • Be currently employed by an Australian not-for-profit organisation* 
  • Have approximately 7 – 12 years of work experience** 
  • Fulfil Australian Scholarships Foundation’s general eligibility requirements available on our FAQs page

*Board members are also welcome to apply, provided they meet the general criteria of ‘beginning to lead people’

**Please note, this is a general guide and does not exclude those with a little more or less experience.  

Supporting documentation 

As part of the application process, you are required to upload an endorsement letter written by your supporting organisation, i.e., the CEO (or member of the Board if you are the CEO of your organisation). If you are a non-executive director, you may obtain a letter from a fellow board member (ideally the Chair) or the CEO of the organisation. 

Please see #12 of our FAQ’s page for some tips on what to include in the endorsement letter. 

Adam Hegedus headshot

“The opportunities to be exposed to world-class experts in their fields while networking with peers in various industries and reflecting on my own practice in the international non-governmental organisation sector have been extremely beneficial.”

Adam Hegedus, Managing Director Member of the Finance, Audit & Risk Committee, Educating The Future Australia Ltd. 2021 McKinsey Young Leaders Forum Scholarship Recipient.

Application process 

To apply for a scholarship, please complete the following steps: 

  • Click ‘APPLY NOW’ at the top of the page 
  • Follow the prompts to sign in or create a profile (this will be a hub from which you can apply for any scholarships in future) 
  • Complete the online application form 
  • Follow the prompts to upload an employer endorsement letter*  
  • You will receive an automated confirmation email once you’ve submitted your application successfully 

More information 

Have questions?  Check our FAQs page for answers to the most common questions. If you need assistance with the scholarship application process, please contact Australian Scholarships Foundation via [email protected].  

Read more about the 2022 recipients of the McKinsey Young Leaders Forum here.