Project LEAD® Institute

The Project LEAD® Institute is a six-day intensive science course designed for the lay public to train breast cancer advocates. The course covers the basics of cancer biology, genetics, epidemiology, research design and advocacy, and provides a foundation of scientific knowledge upon which participants can strengthen and empower themselves as activists. Taught by renowned research faculty, this is a unique opportunity for those interested in learning more about working as an NBCC research advocate.

For a more in-depth look at the Project LEAD experience, please see our Frequently Asked Questions below.

Applicants must be members of NBCC who are:

  • Currently involved in the activities of a breast cancer organization
  • Interested in learning the scientific language and concepts of breast cancer to share with their community
  • Motivated to take a seat at the tables where important breast cancer decisions are made
  • Dedicated to supporting NBCC’s mission to end breast cancer for everyone
  • **Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, NBCC requires that all attendees of in-person programming must be fully vaccinated as per CDC guidelines. Attendees must also provide proof of a negative COVID test taken no more than 48 hours before the start of the event. Daily testing may be required.**

To apply, you must:

  • Complete an application detailing your history of advocacy and your interest in Project LEAD.
  • Submit two letters of recommendation on this template to
  • Applications will not be considered until all pieces are received
  • Need-based travel and lodging scholarships are available. You can apply for them via the application. Tuition is free and all meals are included.
  • Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis.
  • NOTE: Accepted participants must attend the entire course.

2023 Project LEAD Institute

Applications for the 2023 Project LEAD Institute are now open!

DATES: July 30 – August 4, 2023
 Estancia La Jolla Hotel & Spa, La Jolla, CA

INSTRUCTIONS: To apply, please complete the form at the link below. The application includes general information questions, an important informational video, as well as short essay questions designed to help us get to know the applicant’s advocacy background and goals. Please take the time to complete these questions thoughtfully. Applicants must also submit two letters of recommendation on this template. These recommendations can come from anyone who can speak thoroughly about your breast cancer advocacy activities. All letters should be submitted to


Applications will be accepted on a monthly basis beginning at the end of January 2023. All notifications of acceptance will be made no later than May 1, 2023.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Project LEAD?
What is the daily schedule like?
What is the dress code?
Should I bring a tablet and/or laptop with me?
Will there be time to speak directly with the instructors when I’m at the training?
What do the breakout sessions look like?
Will I have an opportunity to network with anyone else?
Who are Project LEAD Mentors?
Is there any additional work before or during the Project LEAD Institute?
What if I am unable to attend part of the training?
Can I choose to stay at a different hotel?
What is the cost of the Project LEAD Institute?
Do I have to attend the NBCC Advocate Leadership Summit before I can attend Project LEAD?