Exploration Session Events

Are you interested in learning more about the Inspired Leadership Initiative? Our team periodically hosts virutal and in-person events for those interested in learning more about the ILI program.  These events will include opportunities to learn more about:

  • Life as an ILI fellow and living at Notre Dame
  • Core Elements of the ILI program
  • Academic Engagement Opportunities
  • Community Engagement & Social Activities

On-Campus Exploration Event

The ILI Leadership team hosted a limited number of prospective fellows for an invitation only On-Campus Exploration Event in late October 2023. This event included all elements of the Virtual Exploration as well as an immersive opportunity to engage with ILI fellows, alumni, and leadership, as well as Notre Dame faculty and broader community members. Want to attend an on-campus Exploration Event in the future? Email us at for more information.

Virtual Exploration Sessions

We hold Virtual Exploration Sessions throughout the year via Zoom. Our final session of this academic year was held on Tuesday, February 6.  Future  exploration sessions will be listed below as they are scheduled. 

If you'd like to receive updates about upcoming exploration sessions, please complete the "Contact Us" form below and indicate your interest in attending a virtual exploration session.  Our team will reach out when future sessions are scheduled. You can also request a recording from a previous session below.

Contact Us  Request a recording of a previous event


ILI Fellow Selection Process

Candidate Profile and Considerations

We are seeking applications from accomplished individuals from a broad and diverse set of professional backgrounds who have completed careers of 20 years or more.

Please consider the following when contemplating your application:

Diversity of Backgrounds: An individual’s experience may be in any field from non-profit, business, family management, academics, and more. We will admit up to 30 individuals for the upcoming cohort.

Time Commitment: The program encompasses a full academic year at the University of Notre Dame campus. Fellows will have access to the academic and cultural life of the University community.

Community-Focused: We are seeking individuals — as well as their spouses or partners, if desired — that have a willingness to share their knowledge and experience with other program participants, students, faculty, and others within the community, as well as an openness to learn from others.

Social Impact Focused: Fellows should have a desire to become a greater force for good in the world while leveraging the knowledge and experience gained through the program.

Spouse/Partner Engagement: Spouses, life partners (and for select activities, invited guests) are welcome to participate in certain elements of ILI programming and are encouraged to do so to the degree that best suits each individual - from social participation, auditing two courses per semester, or to apply as a fellow themselves. If your spouse or partner would like to participate as a full fellow, a separate application must be completed.


Application Timeline and Process

The application for our 6th Cohort (2024-2025 academic year) opened on September 15, 2023. Applications will be reviewed over the course of several rounds, which are outlined in the table below. Following the third round deadline of March 1, 2024, we will continue to accept and review applications on a rolling basis.  A link to the application can be found below, click on "Apply Now". 

Admissions Round

Application Deadline

Anticipated Interview Selection Notifications

Anticipated Decision Timeline

Early Admission | Round 1

October 31, 2023



Round 2

January 10, 2024

End of January


Round 3

March 1, 2024


Early May

Rolling Admissions

After March 1, 2024, we will continue to accept and review applications on a rolling basis. 

We encourage applicants to apply before April 30, 2024 for consideration at our next admissions committee meeting.

Benefits of applying for the early admission round include:

  • Applicants can anticipate receiving a decision before the end of the calendar year; this will allow you time to plan ahead for this transition in your life.

  • Early admission provides you early access to the competitive rental housing market near the Notre Dame campus.

  • This deadline is highly recommended for international applicants as the VISA application process may require significant lead-time. By applying early, you can help ensure your on-time arrival for the start of the program in August 2024.

Please contact our office at or (574) 631-8070 with any questions about the selection process.

Introduce Yourself Apply Now  

Dave Kostolanksy

“After what I consider to be a successful business career and a busy twelve years in retirement, I felt like I needed a new challenge. I was confident that the ILI would fulfill that need and perhaps provide a pathway to my future endeavors. To return to college again after fifty-four years, and to take advantage of all that Notre Dame has to offer—academically, spiritually, culturally, and socially—was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity."

Dave Kostolansky, ILI Fellow

Cindy Sescleifer

“Looking for more than simply some kind of lifelong learning program to interest or challenge me in retirement, I was drawn to Notre Dame’s Inspired Leadership Initiative because it offered a rare opportunity to actually take the time—a year’s worth of time!—to discern my next vocation. Along with that gift, the ILI enkindled a new joy and an internal peace that comes with doing what one is called to do."

Cindy Sescleifer, ILI Fellow