NJLP, encouraging South Asians to get involved (Fellowship application deadline is Feb. 15)


Given the lack of South Asian-American representation in government and politics, a group of community leaders founded the New Jersey Leadership Program in 2016 to encourage civic and political engagement in the South Asian community.


The 2017 NJLP fellowship class hears from congressional staffers during a trip to Washington, D.C.

We provide a nonpartisan platform for encouraging South Asian youth to become more engaged in government and politics. We offer a summer fellowship program that focuses on developing leadership qualities, gaining fluency in public policy issues and filling the pipeline for South Asian-Americans to work in government or pursue public office at the local, state and federal levels.


Our goal is to continue to provide a summer fellowship experience that exceeds the expectations of our fellows. In the long term, our hope is to stay engaged with our fellows, even after they complete the program, and encourage them to sustain their interest and engagement in politics and government.


We offer a six-week summer fellowship program that places selected applicants in roles with elected officials or government entities across the state of New Jersey, ranging from the Governor’s Office to the Treasury Department to the offices of state legislators. This real-world learning opportunity is supplemented through a weekly speakership series and field trips that offer the fellows an opportunity to hear firsthand from accomplished professionals and public servants.


The 2017 class visits the Eisenhower Executive Office Building, following a tour of the White House.

We are most proud of the enriching experience our fellows tell us they have had. We have had multiple fellows share with us that NJLP has solidified their interest in public service. Parents, too, have reached out after the end of the fellowship to share that same news and ask how their children can build on their NJLP experience. We especially take pride in the fact that this experience has proven to be rewarding for our fellows professionally and personally, as they turn a room of strangers into friends by the end of six short weeks.


We rely on the goodwill and support of members of the South Asian community who share their time and resources with us, because they believe in our work and our next generation.


Apply! If you are a South Asian high school or college student interested in government and politics, learn more about us here and consider applying! The application deadline for the 2019 program is February 15.

Conversation Starter

For more information about us, please reach out to Amit Jani at amit@njlead.org.

In brief

Serving: Serving South Asian youth across New Jersey, the NJLP is a volunteer-driven effort led by a group of community leaders seeking to pay it forward.
Key members: NJLP has many prominent supporters, who volunteer their time and energy as part of our Advisory Council. Among the prominent members of our Advisory Council is a role model of South Asians aspiring to public service: State Sen. Vin Gopal, the first Indian-American state senator in New Jersey.