Student Support

Investing in a New Generation of Public Service Leaders

SECU Foundation’s investment in Lead for North Carolina will help attract young people to local government as a career and encourage college graduates to work in their hometowns or in distressed communities.

SECU Foundation’s investment in Lead for North Carolina will help attract young people to local government as a career and encourage college graduates to work in their hometowns or in distressed communities.

The UNC School of Government is helping train a new generation of public service leaders — leaders who will work with local governments in economically distressed communities across North Carolina.

It’s happening because of Lead for North Carolina, part of Lead for AmericaOpens in new window, an organization started by Carolina alumnus Joe Nail, which places recent graduates in local government positions across the country. The first Lead for North Carolina training program will begin in July 2019 with a cohort of 25 fellows.

Thanks to a generous grant from the SECU Foundation, twenty of those graduates will be named SECU Fellows, and the grant will cover their first year’s salary and housing stipends. This is the SECU Foundation’s first venture in education funding for graduate students and a true investment in the future of the state.

“SECU Foundation’s investment in Lead for North Carolina will help attract young people to local government as a career and encourage college graduates to work in their hometowns or in distressed communities,” said Mike Smith, dean of the UNC School of Government. “Public officials have told us they need to expand their workforce, and I’m thrilled SECU Foundation has chosen to invest in North Carolina communities by entrusting us with training, placing, and mentoring these fellows.”

A $500,000 grant from the State Employees’ Credit Union Foundation will enable the UNC School of Government to train and place college graduates in city and county governments in distressed communities across the state. The gift will supportLead for North CarolinaOpens in new window, an effort announced in 2018 to cultivate a new generation of public service leaders in the state.

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