Emerging Leaders Fellowship Program

Do you see yourself as a future leader in the Montessori community? The AMS Emerging Leaders Fellowship Program is a professional development initiative that provides a year of structured learning, mentoring, and networking opportunities to Montessori-credentialed teachers who have not yet assumed leadership positions in the Montessori community—but would like to.

Fellows develop the skills and confidence to raise their commitment to Montessori education to the next level. They also earn 60 hours of continuing professional development, which can be applied to the AMS Professional Development requirement.

The selection process for each year’s cohort of fellows is a competitive one.

What You Will Experience

  • You will be paired with a mentor who offers learning experiences tailored to meet your unique needs, interests, and qualifications.
  • The program launches with an intensive 2 days of professional development immediately before The Montessori Event in that year’s conference city. This experience will be provided virtually and in person at The Montessori Event 2022 in Nashville, TN.
  • The program concludes a year later with another 2-day learning experience in the next conference city. (Fellows are expected to attend the conferences; registration is complimentary.)
  • You will participate in monthly video conference calls that offer opportunities for collaboration and problem solving.
  • You will have access to an online forum that provides further opportunities for facilitated discussions.
  • You will be guided in creating a capstone project that addresses a need at your current organization—and a potential solution.

In-Person PD

Intensive learning experiences at the start and end of the year.

Monthly Check-Ins

Regularly scheduled calls with mentors who provide guidance and resources.

Capstone Project

Address a need or challenge in the fellow’s current Montessori community.

Ongoing Opportunities

Networking and mentorship continue after the program year.

Upon Graduation

Fellows who successfully complete the program receive:

    • An AMS Emerging Leaders Fellowship Program certificate attesting to their participation in a rigorous, 60-hour course of study*
    • Name recognition in AMS publications and at The Montessori Event
    • Ongoing opportunities for mentorship and networking with their cohort group

* Note, the certificate is neither a substitute nor a replacement for an AMS Administrator or Teacher credential.

In addition, fellows may be encouraged or invited to:

  • Serve on AMS committees.
  • Participate as volunteers on a school accreditation visiting team or a visiting team for AMS teacher education program affiliation/MACTE accreditation.
  • Volunteer for a leadership role within their state/local Montessori association.

Hear from Past Emerging Leaders

Application Process

Are you interested in taking next steps toward participating in the Emerging Leaders Fellowship Program?


The process begins by completing our formal application. Once the application has been submitted, your indicated supervisor and character references will each receive an email notification to complete their portion of the application process which includes a Supervisor Affirmation and Character Reference Formal Recommendation. All forms must be submitted by October 22, 2021.

The applicant may wish to manually send these forms by using the forms below.

Who may apply?

We accept applications from any individual who aspires to be a leader in the Montessori community and meets these criteria:

  • Is a current member of AMS
  • Holds an active AMS-recognized Montessori teaching credential. AMS recognizes credentials from AMS, the Association Montessori Internationale (AMI), and any other program accredited by the Montessori Accreditation Council for Teacher Education (MACTE).
  • Is not currently in a leadership position, either as a head of school or director of a teacher education program.

AMS is committed to diversity within the Montessori community, including the backgrounds of its leaders. To that end, we encourage applications from global AMS members, people of color, LGBTQ people, and other marginalized communities.

Timeline for the 2021 – 2022 Emerging Leaders Fellowship Program 

July 19, 2021: Application period opens.

October 22, 2021: Application submission deadline.

December 6, 2021: AMS notifies candidates of acceptance.

March 15 - 17, 2022: Program launches at the Montessori Event 2022, Nashville, TN. Participants may join virtually or in person.

March 14 - 16, 2023: Program concludes at the Montessori Event 2023, Boston, MA.

Selection of Fellows

AMS Emerging Leaders Fellowship Program applicants will be reviewed by a committee of AMS staff and volunteers who will evaluate and rank each applicant’s written responses and letters of recommendation. Total scores are then considered alongside various demographic criteria to ensure a diverse, well-rounded group.

Want to know more about our Emerging Leaders Fellowship Program?

Fee & Expenses

Fellows are responsible for the following expenses. If the fellow’s employer will be covering the expenses, that arrangement must be made directly between the fellow and their employer. 

  • Program fee: $2,800.
  • Travel, meals, and lodging for attendance at The Montessori Event 2022 and 2023. (AMS provides complimentary Full registration.)
  • Any expenses incurred for the fellow’s yearlong project, such as books and/or supplies.


The AMS Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion Scholarship Program provides financial support for four eligible applicants of the Emerging Leaders Fellowship.

What each scholarship covers:

  • Emerging Leaders Fellowship program fee: $2,800 value
  • Travel stipend for The Montessori Event 2022, 2023 : $800 value*

Total value: $3,600

*Conditions Apply

Key Dates

  • September 26, 2021: Application deadline
  • November 8, 2021: Notification of Scholarship Winners

Who may apply:

Anyone who meets the professional and academic eligibility requirements for the Emerging Leaders Fellowship, and can demonstrate financial need, may apply. Applicants do not need to be AMS members.

Special consideration will be given to applicants who:

  • are of color and/or from under-resourced populations, including LGBTQIA and developing nations
  • are disabled
  • are members of a protected class under State or Federal law
  • show leadership potential working with teacher education programs and adult learners, especially those who are in any way disenfranchised, such as economically, racially, religiously, socially, geographically, socially, or politically
  • work in Montessori TEPs and/or schools serving racially diverse communities and/or under-resourced populations

How to apply:

Complete and submit the AMS DEI Scholarship Application. For more information on requirements, please read our DEI Scholarship Guidelines.