Application Process

Applications for the 2020 Emerge Pennsylvania training are open 8/1/2019 through 10/31/2019.

Please read through all of the information below in its entirety. It is important to have a complete understanding of the application process and training program before you apply.

We encourage you to begin your application well in advance of the closing date due to the detailed nature of the application.

Who Should Apply?

Emerge Pennsylvania seeks Democratic women who are committed to effective political leadership and are interested in running for elective office and who have:

  • Evidence of political leadership experience or potential, and meaningful involvement in workplace or community;
  • Interest in running for political office;
  • Ability and desire to build effective networks;
  • Ability to articulate a personal political vision;
  • Commitment to full participation and attendance requirements of the training.
  • Applicants must be women who are Democrats and who reside in the state of Pennsylvania.

Emerge Pennsylvania will select 20-25 women from across the state who meet the above criteria and who we believe to have the potential to be political leaders.

Emerge embraces diversity and encourages applications from all women regardless of age, race, color, national or ethnic origin, marital status, religious affiliation, sexual orientation, socio-economic status or physical ability.  Our mission to build the bench of Democratic women ready to run for office acknowledges both systemic and historic barriers to running for office as well as the barriers women impose on themselves.

To be considered for the 2020 Emerge Pennsylvania training program, applicants must complete a written application by 10/15/2019. Written applications will be evaluated by a selection committee and qualified applicants will be invited to an in-person interview. You can apply here.

Time Commitment

The success of the Emerge Pennsylvania Program depends upon commitment to the program’s entire schedule by each participant. Over the seven-month period, approximately 70 program hours are scheduled. Some time outside of regularly scheduled seminars will be necessary for seminar preparation.

You will learn best practices in fundraising, networking, and coalition building, honing your message, writing a field plan and stump speech, how to seek endorsements, public speaking, dealing with the media and the press and much more! All of these skills will make you a better and more polished candidate, giving you an edge!

During the course of the program, participants are also required to participate in a fundraising activity that will benefit Emerge Pennsylvania.

2020 Training Dates

  • 2020 training dates to be determined.  The program will consist of six training weekends, which will begin in January 2020 and run through June 2020.
  • Graduation: June 2020 – Details To Be Announced

Note: Locations may be subject to change. Arrival Times are usually scheduled between 8:00-8: 30 am. Dismissal times may vary but are usually no later than 5:00 pm


Emerge Pennsylvania will review completed written applications and select finalists for in-person interviews. Finalists will be invited to attend an interview with a selection committee. From these interviews, the program members will be selected.

Application Fee

Your non-refundable application fee of $35.00 must be paid for your application to be considered. You are responsible for ensuring that your application is complete. Click here to pay the application fee online, or mail a check to Emerge Pennsylvania, P.O. Box 60078, Philadelphia, PA 19102.


Participation in the Emerge Pennsylvania program requires a tuition of $750 which includes material fees, meals etc. Please note that travel expenses are not included. There is another $250 obligation to be raised through each program members fundraising efforts for the program for a total write/raise obligation of $1,000.00.

This money offsets but does not nearly cover, the cost of Emerge Pennsylvania’s out-of-pocket costs for providing the training sessions. Emerge Pennsylvania believes that individual circumstances should NOT be a barrier to participation in the program. If financial concerns are holding you back from completing your application, please reach out to Anne Wakabayashi at

Note: Because fundraising is a necessary skill required for running for office, partial financial aid may be awarded after admission to the program. This does not cover the fundraising requirement.