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A Breakdown of the Program

LEEAD Frequently Asked Questions

This page will be updated regularly as questions come in about the Leaders in Equitable Evaluation and Diversity (LEEAD) Program.

General Questions About LEEAD

  • Leaders in Equitable Evaluation and Diversity (LEEAD) is a program of the Expanding the Bench® (ETB) Initiative, led by Change Matrix and funded by a generous group of funding partners.

    Launched in the fall of 2015, LEEAD is an intensive evaluation training program consisting of three essential components:

    • Mentoring – Ongoing mentorship from established experts in evaluation
    • Online curriculum – An online-based culturally responsive and equitable evaluation (CREE) curriculum, administered through American University
    • Practicum Site placement – A paid, often remote, evaluation practicum at an evaluation firm, foundation, think tank, university, or non-profit agency

Questions About Eligibility

  • ETB is seeking racially and/or ethnically diverse applicants with a graduate degree and three (3) to seven (7) years of experience in research and/or evaluation, with at least three (3) years of that experience obtained after receiving a graduate degree. Please note that this program is designed for early- to mid-career researchers and/or evaluators with a background in criminal justice, psychology, public policy, public health, mental health, sociology, economics, social work, or related fields.

Questions About How to Apply

  • During open application cycles, the application can be found on the Become a LEEAD Scholar page.

Questions About Timeline

  • Applications are currently closed. Please check the Become a LEEAD Scholar page in early 2023 for more information. To stay up-to-date on the next application cycle, please sign up for our monthly email communication, Bench (Re)Marks.

Questions About Travel and Costs

  • The LEEAD Program is a mostly virtual program that includes completion of the curriculum and the practicum project. Due to health risks associated with COVID-19, we are planning only one in-person meeting at the conclusion of Cohort 4 during the 2022 American Evaluation Association (AEA) Conference*. Practicum Sites, Mentors, and Scholars may coordinate additional in-person meetings as needed and when safe to do so. The ETB Team will reevaluate in-person meetings for the next cohort in accordance with CDC guidelines.

    *At this time, the AEA Conference is scheduled to take place as planned, but we are keeping a close eye to ensure travel and conference attendance will be possible, given the COVID-19 crisis.

Questions About the Mentorship

  • The LEEAD Team will ask both Scholars and Mentors to complete an assessment that gathers information on personal background, research interests, mentoring needs and approaches, work settings, geographic locations, and much more. This is used to conduct the one-to-one matches. Matches are made based on opportunities for strong connections, thus Mentors are selected based on the Cohort’s overall characteristics and career interests.

Questions About the Evaluation Curriculum

  • Scholars are required to complete online-based evaluation coursework through American University. LEEAD uses an intensive, fast-track curriculum that combines online evaluation course modules with a focus on the theory and practice of culturally responsive and equitable evaluation (CREE). Please note that the coursework is not credit-bearing.

Questions About Practicum Sites

  • Scholars will be expected to execute discrete projects of 60-80 hours of work accomplished within an 8-month timeframe. Practicum Sites will contract directly with Scholars to complete a specific scope of work that can be completed remotely and does not require relocation.

Questions About the ACE Evaluation Network

  • As part of the larger ETB Initiative, the Advancing Culturally-responsive and Equitable (ACE) Evaluation Network was created from the belief that information and data have the power to shape policy, programs, and practice and that evaluators from diverse racial/ethnic backgrounds increase the likelihood that methods, analyses, and interpretation benefit the communities they serve. Diversity promotes creative thinking by expanding a group’s capacity for viewing issues or problems with different perspectives and through multiple lenses.

    The ACE Evaluation Network promotes the practice of CREE by including evaluators from diverse racial/ethnic groups throughout all phases of a project — planning, implementation, and performance — and by providing opportunities for Network Members to delve into meaningful discussions around diversity, inclusion, and equity. In addition, several ACE Evaluation Network Members have leveraged their years of expertise to serve as Mentors for the LEEAD Program.

    Those with experience exceeding eligibility requirements for LEEAD may be eligible to apply for the ACE Evaluation Network. To stay up-to-date on the next ACE Evaluation Network Call for New Members, please sign up for ETB’s monthly newsletter, Bench (Re)marks.

Questions About Expanding the Bench

  • Expanding the Bench® (ETB) serves to increase diversity in the evaluation field. ETB’s programmatic elements include: 1) the Leaders in Equitable Evaluation and Diversity (LEEAD) Program, a professional development pathway for racially and ethnically diverse evaluators to develop CREE practice; 2) the Advancing Culturally-responsive and Equitable (ACE) Evaluation Network, a professional network of racially and ethnically diverse evaluators who use and promote CREE practice; and 3) field-building to increase the understanding of CREE among Funders of Evaluation, promote the Network of racially and ethnically diverse evaluators who practice CREE, and shift the evaluation ecosystem toward CREE. ETB is led by Change Matrix (CM) and funded by a generous group of ETB Funding Partners.

Have additional questions that aren’t included above?

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