Global Change Leaders

This program has been postponed. Details on the future of this program will be provided as they emerge.



Dear Women Leaders,

The world as we know it has been overturned by the COVID-19 pandemic. Many of our countries are in various states of curfew and lockdown and all of us are being encouraged by local, national and global health authorities to significantly change our behaviours in response to the Coronavirus.

From Coady Institute, we wish you all the very best in responding to this unprecedented crisis.  We hope you can all keep healthy and will continue to support the most vulnerable in your communities. We also urge you at this time to advocate for strict enforcements around self-distancing in order to slow the spread of the virus and protect your yourselves and families to the best of your abilities.  It is in such times of crisis that the forces of social solidarity must be strongest and women’s voices be especially heard.

Following the first reported case of the virus in Nova Scotia last weekend, Coady Institute and broader university moved to adjust means of operations. All staff of Coady Institute are now working from home, preparing our programs and engaging with project partners locally and overseas.  We are told by the authorities that we may be continuing our social distancing measures for eight weeks.

Given the nature of this unprecedented crisis, with the closure of international borders, termination of international flights, and general economic downturn, we have had to make some immediate and difficult decisions about the Institute’s 2020 course offerings.

We have concluded that in current circumstances, the most responsible and prudent decision is to cancel or postpone all Coady Institute courses scheduled for our Antigonish campus from May to mid-August.

 In this regard, the Global Change Leaders program, has been postponed. Details on the future of this program will be provided as they emerge.

We deeply regret the inconvenience this will cause everyone involved.  We know that many of you have been securing your visas and making professional and personal arrangements to come to the Institute.

We will follow-up with you in the coming weeks to see whether you will be able to come on the new dates established in March 2021, or if you wish to withdraw from the program.  We are also planning to roll out a series of shorter leadership courses or modules online to keep members of our Women Leaders network engaged and sharing their expertise and will be inviting you to take part if you are able.

We will provide regular updates on the Institute’s programs on our website, and will do our best to keep in touch throughout.  Do feel free to share your stories with us.

In the meantime, we wish you the best as we all struggle to keep our families, communities and nations safe.  You are in our thoughts at this most difficult time.

Yours sincerely,

Eileen Alma
Director, Women’s Leadership and Indigenous Programming
Coady international Institute

About the Program

Established in 2011, the Global Change Leaders Program is a seven-week education program offered by Coady Institute’s International Centre for Women’s Leadership. This program enables women from developing countries to strengthen their leadership capacities in order to contribute to innovation and change in their organizations and communities. Program participants engage in learning grounded in real world experiences and focused on Coady’s core thematic areas. Through a shared learning environment with other emerging women leaders from around the world, participants are exposed to a range of experiences and the beginnings of a potentially lifelong network of support.

The Global Change Leaders program provides successful candidates with a scholarship that includes tuition, travel, accommodations, and meals. Successful participants are responsible for costs pertaining to acquiring a visa to enter Canada.

Program participants benefit from the guidance and mentorship of accomplished women leaders in Canada and from around the world. The program is led by a core team of faculty in the International Centre for Women’s Leadership and supported by other Coady faculty and associates.

Program Eligibility

This program is targeted to women leaders from developing countries who are working on development issues. These are women who:

  • Possess a minimum of five years of demonstrated leadership experience in a social or economic development endeavor in sectors such as livelihoods or inclusive economic development, food security, environment, access to education and health care, governance, political engagement of women and the rights of girls and women;
  • Will be immediately returning to their community and sector following the program to put their learning into practice;
  • Have great drive and passion for their work, demonstrated through their outstanding contributions in their organizations and communities;·
  • Are practitioners in civil society organizations including community based organizations and not for profits, or active in public or private institutions, donor/philanthropic agencies, social movements or in a social enterprise/business;
  • Hold a university degree or a combination of post-secondary education and experience; and
  • Have strong oral and written English language competencies.Candidates must be from a country eligible for Official Development Assistance.

For 2020, priority will be given to eligible candidates who identify as Indigenous in their respective communities.

Program Schedule and Components

For 2020, the Global Change Leaders Program consists of two main components:

  1. June 1 – July 17, 2020: A seven week on-site intensive course at the Coady International Institute in Antigonish, Nova Scotia, Canada where a collaborative relationship is fostered among facilitators and participants to draw out lessons and insights from their rich and diverse experiences. This consists of:
  2. A foundation module, in which participants focus on leadership theories and essential competencies, analysis of gender, citizenship and power, practical understandings of these concepts and their application for women leaders within their own contexts, strengthening capacities for social innovations, partnership building in a multi-stakeholder environment, and enhancing abilities to realize citizen-driven asset-based development.
  3. A focus on gendered approaches for social, political and economic empowerment and community development, including addressing legitimacy and accountability in governance structures, building resilient communities and strengthening inclusive economies.
  4. A final module, in which participants articulate an action plan for how they will take their new learning home to provide leadership in their organizations and communities and continue to work towards empowering other women moving forward.
  5. September 1, 2020 – February 28, 2021: Participants will benefit from one-on-one mentoring from experienced women leaders upon their return home for up to six months to follow on the application of learning into practice. Mentors and mentees will be matched during the residency period based on specific needs and geographic locations. Participants will also join a global alumnae network of women leaders.

Selection Process and Key dates

  • Coady Institute will begin the review of applications on November 22, 2019. Due the expected high volume of applications, the first review will be undertaken most of the month of December.
  • Shortlisted candidates will be contacted to take part in an online interview by skype or zoom call by the end of December. Interviews will take place the week of January 7, 2020.
  • Successful candidates will be notified around January 20th.
  • Once notified, candidates will be expect to secure their visa to Canada no later than April 30th, 2020.
  • Successful candidates will receive further instructions regarding travel and schedule once selected.

For further information, please contact

Global Change Leaders Case Studies

GCL  Funders

We gratefully acknowledge the financial support of our private donors and partners as well as Global Affairs Canada.