Accelerate YOUR GROWTH & Impact

The RISE Program brings together the next generation of highly-motivated, mission-driven, early career social sector and community leaders (with approximately five or fewer years of professional experience), who are passionate about social change and advancing equity. Launched in 2006 at New Sector Alliance, the RISE Program formally transitioned to INP’s portfolio of programs in fall 2021 as part of a partnership agreement between the two organizations. Read more about the program transfer here.


The RISE Program is designed for early career individuals looking for impactful leadership development opportunities to propel their careers. During the program, RISE students gain an understanding of how mission-driven, social impact organizations function, develop essential leadership and professional skills, and engage in mentoring relationships and networking. The RISE Program includes:

  • Monthly seminars, all of which deeply integrate the values of diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging, that explore career development, build knowledge about the social impact sector, cover essential leadership skills, and introduce the fundamentals of design-thinking.
  • Networking conversations with a diverse network of other nonprofit and social impact professionals to provide opportunities for connection, collaboration, and building social capital.
  • One-on-one mentorship with a social impact professional during the program.
  • Individualized coaching with INP Faculty to engage in action-oriented problem-solving for workplace based situations.
  • Peer learning with groups that meet regularly to work on skill development, offer mutual support, and expand upon workshop topics together.
  • Access to additional resources through INP’s active and diverse network. This includes learning from other equity-driven leaders including current students, alumni, faculty members, community partners, and funders.


At INP, we know that the learning experience in the classroom is strengthened by the diversity of our participants, and through our programs we are working to create a social impact sector which is more effective, innovative, equitable and connected. Our cohorts represent individuals from a wide array of fields and roles, from education to the environment, human services and organizing and from finance to fundraising. We encourage candidates across all identities, backgrounds, and organizations to apply.

Ideal candidates for the RISE Program are:

  • Early career professionals (with approximately five or fewer years of professional experience) who are already employed and want to bolster their skills and networks in the social impact sector.
  • Growth-oriented individuals who are passionate about social justice, racial and gender equity work, and community change.
  • Individuals who are seeking to expand their careers, organizational impact, and enhance their leadership and impact through classroom learning, practical application and network building.

Applications for our RISE Program are currently closed. Please sign up for our mailing list to be notified when we open applications.


Generally, students meet every three weeks on Friday for an all-day session (10:30am – 4:30pm ET | 9:30am – 3:30pm CT | 7:30am – 1:30pm PT with breaks). Seminars are facilitated by a lead Faculty Member, complemented by guest instructors, and include engaging presentations, case discussions, and small group work with a cohort of 10 to 25 peers. 

Seminar topics include:

  • Designing Your Future: Employing Design Thinking to Shape Your Career
  • Building a Culture of Belonging: Maintaining Authenticity Inside Your Organization
  • Maximizing Your Communication Style and Approach
  • Making Self Care Habitual: From Resolutions to Lasting Behavior Change
  • Leadership Identity Assessment and Formation: Identifying and Leading Through Your Values
  • Results-Focused Work: Setting and Achieving Your Goals
  • Nonprofit Governance: Understanding How Decisions Are Made Inside Your Organization
  • Nonprofit Finance: Understanding How Resources Are Allocated Inside Your Organization


Applications for our RISE Program are currently closed. Please sign up for our mailing list to be notified when we open applications.

The 2024-25 RISE Program schedule can be found here.


The RISE Program ensures that students have opportunities to connect in-person with other early-career leaders in their area to bolster their local networks. Our geographic priorities for the Spring 2024 cohort include Boston, New York City, and Western New York.


Our application process consists of an online application with three components:

  • Program preferences, education, and demographic information
  • Short responses to two prompts; Short answer questions are not evaluated as a writing sample — they are purely to understand more about you as a candidate. Candidates are not evaluated based on strength of writing. Please limit responses to 2-5 sentences. The two prompts are: 1) Briefly describe what compels you to work in the nonprofit, public, or social impact sector; and 2) What specific skills, knowledge, or experiences do you hope to gain from the RISE Program?
  • Virtual interview with an INP staff member

Applicants will receive a more detailed timeline during the interview process.

Application Deadlines

Applications for our RISE Program are currently closed. Please sign up for our mailing list to be notified when we open applications.


While historically the tuition for INP’s RISE Program has been $1,500, we are committed to making all of our programs as accessible as possible. Thanks to the generosity of our Board of Directors and funding partners, INP is now able to waive tuition for any individual who would like to attend the RISE Program. Please do not let financial constraints prevent you from applying.

However, if you or your organization is in a position to contribute financially toward the cost of participating in the RISE Program, it will allow INP to extend these types of opportunities to even more social sector leaders. If accepted into the program, you can let us know at the time of enrollment that you are open to a discussion with INP staff about this. The ability to contribute financially will in no way affect admissions decisions for this INP program.

Continuing Education, networking & alumni community

In addition to the significant learning and growth participants achieve during the RISE Program, INP alumni gain access to lifelong alumni benefits including continuing education, networking opportunities, and more. Check out our Alumni page for more on these benefits.

Alumni Report


of RISE alums say that skills learned at the program were largely transferable to their current role


of RISE alums remain in social impact work


of RISE partner organizations agree that the support provided by RISE students was a good or excellent value


of RISE alums continue to rely on their RISE network as an important support system outside of work

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