Application Process

Applications are closed for the class of 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 New Jersey 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 trainings.
  • Applicants must be women who are Democrats and who reside in the state of New Jersey.

Emerge New Jersey will select 20-25 women from across the state who meet the above criteria and who we believe 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 2019 Emerge New Jersey training program, applicants must complete a written application by January 18, 2019. Written applications will be evaluated by a selection committee and qualified applicants will be invited to an in-person interview. Invitations to join the 2019 class will be extended to the best applicants. Applications are closed for the class of 2019.

Time Commitment

The success of the Emerge New Jersey program depends upon commitment to the program’s entire schedule by each participant. Over the six-month period, approximately 70 program hours are scheduled. Some time outside of regularly scheduled trainings will be necessary for homework and training preparation. While emergencies sometimes arise, attendance at the first day of training is mandatory and absence for any reason will result in a deferral to the following year.  Please review the schedule below to ensure your availability to attend every training day.

2019 Training Dates

All training will take place at the Middlesex County Democratic Organization Offices, 266 Fernwood Avenue, Edison, New Jersey.

Opening Weekend, February 23 and 24

Saturday, March 16

Saturday, April 6

Saturday, April 27

Saturday, May 18

Saturday, June 6

Saturday, June 29

Graduation, TBD


Emerge New Jersey will review completed written applications and select finalists for in-person interviews. Finalists will be invited to attend an interview with the selection committee. Interviews will take place with the Selection Committee Chair Melinda Zito on January 9, January 16, January 19, January 23, January 26, January 30 and February 2.

If you have any questions, please contact Emerge New Jersey Selection Committee Chair Melinda Zito at

Application Fee

A non-refundable application fee of $50 is required and must be submitted along with a completed application.  The application fee can be paid here or mail a check payable to:

Emerge New Jersey
P.O. Box 442
Towaco, NJ 07082


Tuition for the 2019 six-month program is $1,000. Payment plans are available and Emerge New Jersey will assist program members with fundraising their tuition if needed. Financial need should not be a barrier to applying to the program.

The six-month program takes place in Edison. Travel costs are not covered by the program.

If financial concerns are holding you back from completing your application, please email Financial need should not be a barrier to applying to the program.