Promising Leaders Program Scholarship

Promising Leaders Program

Due to COVID-19 applications for 2020 are not being accepted.

The Society of University Surgeons (SUS), the Society of Black Academic Surgeons (SBAS), the Society of American Gastrointestinal and Endoscopic Surgeons (SAGES), and the Eastern Association for the Surgery of Trauma (EAST) have come together to collaborate on a leadership training program with the goal of increasing underrepresented minorities in medicine (URMM) in leadership roles in surgery and medicine.  To accomplish this, we will support a total of 4 individuals to participate in a 2-year program built around professional coaching and 3 separate leadership courses.  Over the two years, fellows will participate in the SUS Mid-Career course, the SBAS leadership academy, and the SUS Leadership Agility Program.  In addition to these offerings, the participants will engage in professional coaching.  The total cost of participation will be $11,000 per individual.  The group will offer 4 awards of $6,000 each with the expectation that the sponsoring institution will match funds to cover the remaining costs as well as travel and lodging at the various meetings.

This program is funded with support from SUS, SBAS, SAGES, and EAST.


  • Eligible applicants are any individual who by race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, or any other personal identification is an underrepresented voice in academic surgery.
  • Be an academic surgeon appointed at the Assistant or Associate Professor at least seven years out from terminal training program at time of award.
  • Actively maintain leadership-related career goals.
  • Demonstrate commitment with support from Department Chair to complete all program requirements.

 Program Requirements

  • Complete program orientation via webinar (March 2019; date to be announced).
  • Attendance and participation as a participant/speaker/discussant/advisor to participants at SBAS Leadership and Faculty Development Institute on April 24, 2019 in New York City and again in April 2020.
  • Attendance at the SUS Leadership Agility Program in Chicago, IL in September 2019 or attendance at the Leadership Agility Program in 2020 (date to be announced).
  • Attendance at Program Session at ACS Clinical Congress in October 2019 in San Francisco, CA.
  • Attendance at the SUS Mid-Career Academic Surgery Professional Development Course on February 3, 2020 in Orlando, FL.
  • Final wrap up at the Academic Surgical Congress in 2021.
  • Active engagement in mentoring process.
  • Active engagement in executive coaching process including assessments and monthly coaching meetings.
  • Completion of all program evaluations and long-term follow-up.

The award funds (including the matching institutional funds) are meant to cover: Registration, lodging and transportation fees for all of the above courses, participation in the executive coaching program, and SUS processing and administrative fees. Please note that the registration fee for the SUS Leadership Agility Program includes lodging and meals but participants are required to provide their own transportation for this course.


Due to COVID-19, applications for 2020 are not being accepted.

1. Complete online application form
2. 300 word essay describing interest in the program, accomplishments to date and personal goals
3. Letter of support from department chair confirming commitment for release time to fulfill program requirements
4. One additional recommendation letter
5. Curriculum Vitae

EAST Scholarship Recipients

2019 - Dirk Johnson, MD