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FY-24 Leadership, Education, and Development (LEAD) Master's Program

The LEAD Master’s Program provides graduate education and preparation for talented, highly qualified URL officers to serve as company officers at the United States Naval Academy and for continued future service in the Navy.  Officers selected for this fully-funded program will spend one year obtaining a Professional Masters of Business Administration in Leadership, Education, and Development from the Naval Postgraduate School.  Officers will be stationed at Annapolis, Maryland for the entirety of their 3 year tour, with the possibility of short TAD periods in Monterey, California. The coursework will also allow the students to obtain a Certificate in Strategic Leadership and the 4500 Sub-Specialty Code. After spending the first year focused on obtaining their PMBA, officers will then complete a two-year follow-on commitment as a company officer at USNA.  There is a requirement for three years of Active Duty service after completion of Master’s degree, the first two-years of which are served at the Naval Academy.  Additional information on the LEAD Master’s Program can be found at

Interested Officers should submit:
  • A completed application, forwarded to your cognizant detailer.  A sample can be found at
  • A personal statement that specifically addresses the reason for your application to the LEAD program to include how the program fits into your career goals and your expectations with respect to the program.
  • An unofficial copy of all Undergraduate or Graduate transcripts.
  • Chain of Command endorsement.
  • Detailer endorsement
  • Additional letters of recommendation (desired, not required; academic references encouraged).
  • A GRE is NOT required for this program but scores are an optional supplement to application materials. 
    Deadline: Applications for FY23 participants must be submitted to detailers no later than 01 October 2022.  All packages will be vetted by detailers to ensure your career timing aligns with the program.  Community specific eligible year groups (YG) and additional eligibility requirements are:


Eligible officers will compete for USNA LEAD nominations via the PERS-41 Talent Management Board (TMB) in August. If nominated through the TMB, a DH Retention Bonus (DHRB) contract must be received prior to an official online application being submitted. PERS-41 JO Detailers will assist the officers with their submission of the online nomination package.
YG 18 Surface Warfare qualified officers who have demonstrated superior performance at sea, have screened for Department Head (DH) Afloat, and who have the career timing to support a 36-month shore duty assignment prior to their 7.5 year mark of commissioned service are eligible. Select YG 18 Surface Warfare Officers may be eligible depending on career timing. Nuclear trained officers are also eligible for the LEAD Master’s program. Due to the specific nature of their career timing, it is understood that they will rotate earlier than 36 months for DH school. All YG 18 and 19 officers should contact their respective PERS-41 Junior Officer (JO) Detailer to determine their timeline to Department Head School.


Submarine Office Distribution Division (PERS-42) will review all applications and recommend for selection top performing officers who can meet Submarine Officers Advanced Course (SOAC) gate at 7.5 years of commissioned service (YCS). Officers whose timing may not meet this 7.5 YCS gate (specifically YG 18) will be evaluated on a case by case basis, and detailer counseling will be required. SOAC attendance and completion of a department head tour are required following completion of USNA assignment.
Eligible officers will compete for nominations via the PERS-42 Talent Management Board.  Submission requirements for the PERS-42 Talent Management Board should include the materials listed in this message and be IAW the instructions found on the PERS-42 website. The Junior Officer Shore Tour Detailer will work with each applicant to ensure all materials are included in the application package.
A Nuclear Officer Incentive Pay contract must be submitted immediately upon selection to the program.  SOAC attendance and the successful completion of a DH tour as defined by PERS-42 is required following the completion of USNA assignment.

Eligible officers will compete for USNA LEAD Master’s Program nominations via an Aviation Officer Assignment Division (PERS-43) Graduate Education Talent Management Board.  Primary criteria utilized for selection will be past performance, qualifications, career timing, and community needs.  Interested officers should contact their respective PERS-43 detailer for assistance with nomination package submission.
Special Warfare
Eligible officers must receive a Detailer endorsement through the Naval Special Warfare Education Screening Panel.  Interested officers should contact the SEAL Officer Community Manager (BUPERS-311D) for assistance with package submission.
Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD)
Prospective applicants must have completed an EOD Company Commander tour, be administratively board screened for EOD DH, and signed the EOD Warfare Officer Retention Bonus.  Applicants meeting these criteria will compete for EOD Officer Assignment and Placement Division (PERS-416) nominations based on their performance, academic qualifications, and suitability for the program.
*NOTE: If selected to the LEAD Master’s Program and servicemember opts to accept orders, it will incur a term of obligated service (OBLISERV) to remain on active duty for three years following completion of the educational portion of the LEAD program. The service obligation is discharged concurrently with any other service obligation already incurred. The specific terms should be confirmed with your community detailer and will be explicitly outlined in the details of your written PCS orders.

Contact your respective detailer to discuss eligibility.
USNA POC: LCDR Lindsey Santiago

For program application questions, please contact your detailer or PERS-443, at 901-874-3996.
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