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Next Generation Leaders (NGL) Program

This program has ended. Interested in developing your potential as a champion of the Internet? Check out our new programs.

The success of the Internet is not an accident. And we cannot take its future for granted. That is why the Internet Society invests in the Next Generation of Internet leaders.

The Internet Society’s Next Generation Leaders (NGL) program aimed to help Internet professionals between the ages of *20 and 40 develop their leadership potential where technology, business, policy, and education intersect.

NGL participants gained a unique opportunity to advance their professional growth and build the experience and confidence they need to drive development in their own local communities and the larger Internet ecosystem. 

NGL blended coursework and practical experience to help prepare young professionals from around the world to become the next generation of Internet technology, policy, and business leaders. Check out what our NGL participants said about the programs.

Learn about our NGL Leaders and their work: 

The NGL curriculum

The NGL curriculum was made up of academic and field-based components. Each component could be completed separately, or in any combination, depending on your own skills and interests. What you could study:

Frequently Asked Questions

Why is there an age criteria? What if candidates are older than 40?

The Next Generation Leaders (NGL) program is designed to give younger individuals (between 20 to 40 years), including those from developing countries, an opportunity to develop their leadership skills. Specifically, the program is designed to help them improve their knowledge of Internet technology and public policy issues as they progress to become future leaders in Internet Society, and in other organizations in the Internet space

Candidates who are over 40 at the time of application will be not be considered.

The only exception to this criteria is for the Internet Society Fellowship to the IETF component due to the high level of technological knowledge required for successful participation and engagement at the IETF meeting.

Are there any other criteria I should know about in the NGL program?

Yes, the Internet Society Fellowship to the IETF is only open to those who originate from and reside in a developing country, which traditionally have low rates of participation in the IETF.

How can I receive updates about the program?

You may sign up for emailed information about the Internet Society’s Next Generation Leaders (NGL) program. You will receive information on the various components of the program, including program details, application rounds, selection results, and program progress.

This email sign up list is not an official application to any of the NGL program components but just for sharing information.

What is the application process for the NGL program?

Each component of the NGL program has a separate application form, timeline, and selection committee. In order to remain up to date on upcoming application rounds, interested individuals are encouraged to sign up on the above mentioned information list.

In order to be considered for a graduate certificate of the program (awarded annually), you must have applied for, been awarded, and successfully completed the eLearning component. We also recommend that you apply for any of Internet Society’s NGL representation programs such as Internet Society Ambassadorships to the Internet Governance Forum (IGF), the World Bank, and OECD, and the Internet Society Fellowship to the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF).

Selections of NGL graduates are based on performance in the eLearning component (compulsory), professional history within the Internet ecosystem, and/or any involvement in other experiential components of the NGL programs (Internet Society ambassadorships and fellowships).

Can I apply to both the eLearning program and the Fellowship to the IETF?

Yes, any one individual is welcome to apply to any/all components of the NGL. This is a central goal of the NGL program: blending academic study (eLearning) with practical, high-level experience, (IETF, IGF, and other representation programs).

What is the content of the eLearning courses?

The courses will cover various topics that are necessary to understand the complexity of the Internet ecosystem: history of the Internet, Internet standards and technology, Internet Governance and policy issues, diplomacy. The course is currently 24 weeks long, including a few weeks’ break time.

Applicants must be able to spend at least 8 hours each week on the coursework.

How does the eLearning platform work?

The online courses are conducted through a Learning Management System – an online classroom platform. The platform is based on a variety of interactive Web learning tools and requires an Internet connection (Dial-up is adequate).

In what language is the eLearning component?

The eLearning is currently available in English and French, and Internet Society is working to expand the opportunity to additional languages.

Are the eLearning classes in real time?

Typically a few hours are in real time, which allows participants to share their thoughts with their online classmates and have contact with their lecturers. A typical week will require reading online text, adding hypertext entries (comments), reacting to classmates’ hypertext entries and an online meeting with lecturer and classmates. There is flexibility in the program as it is designed for working professionals.

Will I have to pay if selected for any of the NGL components?

No, Internet Society will cover all charges for your participation, if selected.

Will there be additional work required outside of participating in the eLearning platform and the representation meetings? Will those requirements interfere with work or other activities?

All representation components in the NGL require a follow-up report or a project from the participant showing how he or she has shared the meeting experience with their local community/region.

The eLearning component does have homework commitments outside of the time spent in the online platform. As listed in the eLearning criteria, participants must be able to commit at least 8 hours a week to coursework.

The NGL program is designed for the working professional or student and should fit within the participants’ current commitments. If you feel that the NGL requirements may interfere with your current commitments, we do not encourage you to apply.

If you have any additional queries, please send to [email protected].

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