European Junior Leadership Academy
University of Nottingham

What is the European Junior Leadership Academy (EJLA)?

The EJLA is a 12 month programme aimed at identifying and developing some of Europe's most promising student nurse and midwife leaders.

The programme aims to identify junior nursing and midwifery leaders early in their career, and:

  • develop their leadership knowledge, attitudes and skills
  • develop their leadership identify
  • give them the opportunity to observe the leadership signatures of a variety of leaders
  • support them to envision the leadership legacies they wish to leave behind

The EJLA will introduce students to a variety of leadership concepts and approaches, support them to reflect on their leadership, and create opportunities to observe leaders, their effect on those they lead and the organsations they lead.

Through innovative teaching methods, peer network activities, mentoring, coaching and an internship, the EJLA aims to increase student nurses’ and midwives’ capacity and capability to lead early in the career journey and enhance student nurses’ employability by maximizing the early impact they have in the organisations they serve.

The EJLA builds on the United Kingdom National Junior Leadership Academy the Student Nursing Times Awards' 'Teaching Innovation of the Year' 2014. 

Partner institutions

The three year project is a collaboration between:

Rationale for the EJLA

Changes in the European health sector, political landscape and the need for high quality nursing care globally require strong nursing leadership. There is some evidence that early identification and development of individuals with leadership aptitude has benefits for individuals, the health service, the nursing profession and society. 


The EJLA provides a radical supplement to traditional leadership development seen in University nursing and midwifery programmes and practice by supporting high performing student nurses and midwives to construct a leadership identity early.

This approach is designed to build leadership capacity and capability at scale, i.e. quickly and in large numbers. It is believed that this is needed now because of the numerous challenges presented to European health systems. 


The programme

Through teaching, activities, mentoring and an internship, the EJLA aims to enhance the early impact participants will have in the organisations they serve. The programme will develop their leadership identity, knowledge, attitudes and skills by creating opportunities for them to observe leaders in action and leaders’ impact on the individuals and organisations they lead. 

The 12-month programme includes:
  • A five day residential leadership retreat at the University of Nottingham, England: 28 August - 1 September 2017
  • Allocation of a senior nurse/midwifery leader as a mentor
  • Participation in peer to peer regional leadership networks with tasks/activities to be completed between the residential retreats
  • A policy/leadership internship: 14 days, between summer 2017 and summer 2018 in either Ireland, England, Slovenia or Portugal
  • A five-day residential leadership retreat: 4 - 8 June 2018, University of Maribor, Slovenia 
About page

Coming in 2018/19

Massive Online Open Course (MOOC):

In addition to the live Academy, in 2018 there will be a MOOC, 'Lead Now!', open to student nurses and midwives all over the world. Watch the video.

Leadership summit

In 2019, there will be a multiplier event in Nottingham which will bring together student nurses and midwives from all over Europe to share strategies, ambitions and ideas about student leadership. 

Further information

Contact EJLA


European Junior Leadership Academy