Become a Member of the John Langston Mercer Institute's (JMLI) Inaugural Class


Virginia State University, VA – June 1, 2021 - Virginia State University’s John Mercer Langston Institute (JMLI) for African American Political Leadership is accepting applications for the inaugural cohort focused on developing a pipeline of Black political leaders throughout the Commonwealth of Virginia.


The JMLI at Virginia State University is devoted to developing, empowering, and cultivating African American leadership in the Commonwealth of Virginia through innovative training, policy collection and assistance, programming, research, and networking.

Virginia State University is Working to Develop New Black Political Pipeline with Political Institute

Applications for the program are being accepted until June 18th, 2021 with selections being announced on Wednesday June 23rd. Applicants of all backgrounds are encouraged to apply for the first of its kind institute and political training. There will be a specific focus on cultivating African American leadership in the arenas of running for office, serving in office, public administration, protesting, and policy change/implementation.


“The need for Black political leadership development is needed now more than ever. As we look at the current climate of politics in the nation and in the Commonwealth of Virginia, there is a need for new talent and new voices, and there is a desire for people to learn how to be engaged in the arena of politics, says Dr. Wes Bellamy, Chair of the VSU Department of Political Science and Director of the John Mercer Langston Institute. “The JMLI institute is focused on developing this talent and creating a pipeline of leaders to help Virginia move forward.”


The JMLI will take place in September and October with participants participating in events throughout Virginia while learning about the political landscape pertaining to African Americans.


Visit the VSU Political Science home page for more information and to apply.