Professionals of Color Cohort 2024

Delaware River Watershed POC Program: Professionals of Color Cohort 2024

Starting in the fall of 2024, professionals of color in the Delaware River Watershed region can join a six-month cohort led by Institute for Conservation Leadership (ICL). Since BIPOC communities in environmental organizations operate in a space with lower representation and higher barriers to advance their careers, this program is intended to create and support a cohort of young professionals in their work. The cohort will have opportunities for career development, network building, and skills development to enhance and advance their professional pursuits.



The cohort will be capped at 20 individuals who meet monthly with the intention to:

  • Develop strong network ties with other professionals within the Delaware River Watershed. This will allow for stronger collaboration in current work, as well as establishing relationships for future academic and professional steps.
  • Utilize workshops and discussions to allow participants to explore their own professional strengths, learn how to create a strong impact in their current work, and set goals for future pursuits with the lens of the challenges that BIPOC staff encounter.
  • Build participants’ peer leadership and facilitation skills, as they explore shared professional issues that impact professionals of color in the environmental space.


“Being a part of this cohort was a super valuable experience. It helped me with tangible skills and gave me the inspiration and confidence to make a huge career leap. The personal pitch module was especially important for me. The way it was facilitated helped me clarify what I was doing in my career and what I would like to be moving towards.

The experience of doing this learning alongside other people of color in different stages in their careers was really powerful. This cohort program gave me the opportunity to see the world outside of my regular daily viewpoint.”

-2023 Cohort Member

“When I joined this program, I had high hopes for gaining leadership development skills and the results were even better than I imagined they would be! The way the program was facilitated was magical. We were empowered to make it a collaborative process and asked for input and feedback from the   start. All of the sessions combined created a holistic feeling to the program.

What I learned led to a year of growth for me and gave me confidence to value my own ideas and contributions. I know I can   call on my cohort if I need to ask for advice, share events, or just to say ‘hello.’

-2023 Cohort Member


  • You work in an environmental or conservation organization in/around the Delaware River Watershed
  • Identify as a BIPOC individual (Black, Indigenous, or Person of Color)
  • Can commit to participate in the majority of sessions
    • In person kickoff gathering: September 13th (full day) in Philadelphia
    • Two 90-minute sessions each month from September 2024 – February 2025
      • A few group assignments that will be completed between sessions
  • In-person closing gathering in February 2025




  •  June 2024: Applications open
  • August 12, 2024: Application deadline
  •  September 13th, 2024: In-person opening gathering
    • Location: TBD in Philadelphia
    • Travel costs can be reimbursed
  • September 2024 – February 2025: Two virtual meetings each month
  • February 2025: Closing in-person gathering
Map outlining states and cities in the Delaware River Watershed


  • Monthly meetings will alternate between in-depth, topical workshops and networking sessions.
  • During the topical workshops, a concept will be introduced and discussed. Following the session, participants will work in follow up activities to implement the topic.
  • Networking sessions will emphasize peer facilitation skills and discussion of topics generated by the cohort.
  • Workshop topics will be organized into three concept areas built sequentially, integrating the complexities of being a BIPOC individual in the workplace:
  1. Me, Myself and I: Individual Skill Building
    • Explore individual skill sets and strengths, with the aim of articulating and utilizing this knowledge for professional growth.
  2. Me in the Workplace: My Current Work
    • Build skills and explore how to focus on resilience, avoid burnout, and optimize oneself in a workplace to succeed and feel supported.
  3. Me in the Future: Goal Setting and Next Steps
    • Explore next steps both professionally and personally and create a plan to achieve those dreams. The focus will be on networking building both within and without the cohort



Applications for this cohort are open through August 12, 2024.

Please use this google form to submit your application to the cohort. 

Costs for the program and travel for participation at in-person convenings are covered through the support of the William Penn Foundation.