Applying to the Ph.D. in Transdisciplinary Leadership and Creativity for Sustainability Program

We are currently accepting applications for Fall 2024. We accept applications on a rolling basis, and will begin reviewing applications February 1st, 2024. The TLCS program curriculum requires a 15-credit prerequisite sequence that is also the foundation for our Master's in Leadership for Sustainability (MLS). We often recommend that individuals who have not completed the MLS program consider starting with this sequence which can be completed as a 1-year fellowship before entering the Ph.D. Please reach out to if you have any questions about the application process or program.

Tuition, fees and financial support info can be found here.

Admissions Steps:

  1. Complete the Online Graduate College Application (apply for Fall 2024)
  2. Select PhD in Transdisciplinary Leadership and Creativity for Sustainability as your program choice.
  3. Follow upload requirements.

Application Timeline:

  • Accepting applications on a rolling basis. Application review process will run from February through June 2024.
  • Rolling consideration for internal scholarships
  • Late-February: First-round acceptance decisions made, rolling admissions thereafter based on availability.
  • Late-February to June: Ongoing rolling admissions.

Application Requirements:

  • Graduate College Application
  • Statement of Purpose
  • Leadership Portfolio
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • College transcripts
  • Resume or C.V.
  • TOEFL scores for those whose native language is not English, and who have not earned a degree from a U.S. institution or an institution in Australia, Ireland, New Zealand, United Kingdom, or an English speaking institution in Canada, Ghana, Kenya or Nigeria.

Statement of Purpose Prompts

In your statement of purpose (~1,000 words), please address the following questions:

  • What attracts you to this PhD program? What is motivating your desire to participate in the program?
  • What questions, learning edges, and/or methods might inspire the focus of your PhD inquiry?

Leadership Portfolio

Please submit a portfolio that reflects the bodies of work and lineages that have influenced your leadership, creative practices, and/or knowledge generation efforts. This portfolio should speak to what motivates your work and the experience that you will draw upon for your PhD research. While the portfolio may include documents and links, we also encourage a summary statement that provides an overview of the content included (not to exceed 500 words).

Letters of Recommendation

Applications will require three recommendations sent to the Graduate College (this most frequently holds up the application review process; start early to make sure your application is reviewed on schedule). We recommend that you choose letters of recommendation that can speak to these three criteria:

  • Your leadership experience and creative practice
  • Your ability to create the conditions, structure, and self-motivation to successfully complete a multi-year research/scholarship initiative
  • Your willingness to engage with ambiguity, complexity, and tension in service to learning

We would love to hear from you! Please reach out to share what brings you to our program and any questions you may have. You can email Drusilla Roessle at with any questions and/or to set up a time to connect by phone.

We would love to hear from you! Email Drusilla Roessle at with any questions and/or to set up a time to connect by phone.