Apply for African Leadership Academy Class of 2019

African Leadership Academy (ALA) seeks to enroll the most outstanding young leaders from across African and around the world  — ALA is not only looking for young people who are smart and excel academically, we are also looking for young people with potential to lead and impact the world around them through their courage, initiative and innovation. Please watch our video if you would like to learn more.

Admission Criteria

African Leadership Academy is unlike any other educational institution you will come across. At ALA we seek to change Africa! We believe that this transformation lies in the hands and minds of young people with a desire to move the continent toward peace and prosperity. At ALA we will challenge you to realize your academic and leadership potential. You will be encouraged to begin addressing the social, economic, and political issues facing Africa. You will be asked to think critically about your role in our changing world. ALA seeks to enroll young people aged 16 to 19 based on the criteria below:

Leadership Potential

At African Leadership Academy we seek young leaders with the potential to transform Africa and the world. We encourage you to share with us the activities in which you participate and the leadership roles you assume at home, in your school, or in your community, and we hope you will think critically about what “leadership” means to you.

Entrepreneurial Spirit

Entrepreneurs identify needs in the world around them and take action to alleviate those needs. They start businesses, health clinics, youth organizations, and social movements. They bring new products and ideas to the world. Their efforts create value and improve lives. We encourage you to celebrate your entrepreneurial spirit and share your entrepreneurial ideas with us.

Passion for Africa

Do you have an African dream? Are you excited by the idea of spending two years in a community of individuals from a wide range of cultural, ethnic, socioeconomic, and religious backgrounds from across the continent?

Commitment to Service

When leaders use their skills for the benefit of their communities, we all benefit. Are you passionate about uplifting your community? Do you dream of a world in which all people are able to realize their dreams? Have you demonstrated this passion at school or in your community? We hope you will share with us how you plan to give back to your community and the world.

Academic Achievement

To succeed in the rigorous and challenging ALA curriculum, students must have demonstrated mastery of the subject matter taught at the school they attended before entering the Academy. Our selections committee will closely review scores from national examinations and the marks and comments on each applicant’s school reports. Finalists will also write an entrance examination.

Selection Process

First Round

ALA’s selection process is extremely competitive. The Academy receives several thousand applications from a diverse array of African countries each year. These applicants come from a wide range of social, economic, cultural & educational backgrounds. The application includes short questions and essays and must be submitted with academic transcripts. Please check the admissions timeline below to confirm the appropriate application deadline for you.


Final Round

At this stage approximately 400 finalists are selected to attend Finalist events held across the continent. At these events, finalists write entrance exams, participate in group activities & are interviewed one-on-one by the ALA Admissions team. Finalists are also required to submit teacher recommendations.



The hardest part of the selection process: the Academy is only able to select 120 students from the pool of extraordinary finalists to attend the Academy. All finalists will be notified of their admissions status by mid- April.

Student Application Timeline

May 1st 2018

Applications open!

August 31st 2018

First application deadline (early decision)

October 31st 2017

Second application deadline (early decision)

September – October 2018

Rolling reviews and early decision finalists interviews. All early decision applicants will be interviewed by December 31st.

November 1st, 2018 – January 11th, 2019 regular decision applications

September – October 2018

Early decision applicants will receive notification of admissions status.

Regular decision applicants notified of their first-round status.

Regular decision applicants selected as finalists will be invited to interview with the Admissions team.

April 30th 2019

All finalists will be notified of their admissions status. Candidates who apply through our online portal will be able to check their application status online.

Financial aid awards will be made by end of May.

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