The Program

The Objectives

Once selected, each Young Leader works with an expert team to identify one of three tracks where they can have the most success, and where the foundation’s resources can be used best.

Sport Track

Support in achieving sporting goals - whether that be a college scholarship, competing at an elite level for their country, or training as a coach in their community

Leadership Track

Support in personal development to better equip them as leaders of other young people – whether that be supporting them in getting a college scholarship, providing networking opportunities, exposure to events and educational opportunities to help them grow and gain experience in the sport for change community

Community Track

Support in spearheading community development - whether that be funding their own project, helping them rise in an existing community organization or making a social impact in another way through sports

The Program

Once their track is identified, Michael Johnson Young Leaders are supported from the moment they are selected for years to come:

The program is structured so that each Young Leader receives support via a tailored path toward a positive future for themselves as well as the tools to give back to their community in a meaningful way.

One Week

Intensive week long training course in Dallas

Once selected, Michael Johnson Young Leaders spend a week at the Michael Johnson Performance Center in Dallas, Texas. With experts from around the globe overseeing the program, each Young Leader goes through a journey over the week that includes further developing the three key tracks of the program.

The Young Leaders form a tight bond so they can rely on each other in the future, develop their leadership skills, understand the opportunities for their future in sport, flesh out their project ideas, and further understand community engagement practices using sports.

By the end of the week, a yearlong plan of support has been mapped out for each Young Leader, putting a focus on one of the three key tracks.

One year


Each package is tailored, but the support is tangible and includes contributions and oversight from all expert partners involved, including:

Sport Track
  • Funding for sports and training equipment
  • Support and advice on sports scholarship opportunities
  • Support in development of pathways to elite participation
  • Regular virtual sports training drills to improve players speed strength, agility and more
  • Video feedback from training
  • Nutrition advice
  • Corrective injury support
  • International coaching opportunities
Leadership Track
  • Introductions to organizations and people
  • Advising and consulting by leadership experts
  • Speaking, attending and participating in events
  • College and higher education application support
  • Inntroductions to potential funders, partners and advocates
  • Access to online outlets to promote your achievements, activities and stories
  • Regular motivational webinars with Michael Johnson
Community Track
  • Training workshops near Young Leader’ location
  • Monthly Virtual Learning Webinars on organizational development
  • Online Education Program - learning how to adapt and create your own curriculum
  • Monthly curriculum specific to social messages
  • Monitoring and Evaluation support
  • Self-Directed Learning methodology training
  • Initial funding for project idea
  • MJYL official project logo to raise credibility of project

Two years

MJYL Ambassadors

Following the year of support, MJYLs can apply to become “Ambassadors”. Ambassadors have taken maximum advantage of the support package and have shown true strides toward their goal. They have a clear pathway of what further support would look like and a strong potential of getting there with the resources the Foundation can provide.

Ambassadors remain on their Sport, Leadership or Community Track and can be approved for additional tailored support and resources for two additional years. Currently, Michael Johnson is supporting FIVE Ambassadors who have succeeded in such endeavors.

Meet our Ambassadors here >>

Three years

MJYL Mentors

MJYLs can become “Mentors” where they are trained to support incoming young leaders.

Read more about our Mentors here >>

Support for Life

MJYL Alumni

All Young Leaders, no matter how much support they get, become Alumni after the first year. Those who may not continue as Ambassadors or Mentors, still receive this ongoing support.

Read more about our Alumni here >>

Sport Track
  • Sports training drills to improve players’ speed, strength, agility and more
  • Michael Johnson Young Leaders logo, letters of support and recommendation for improved credibility of projects
  • Nutrition advice, coaching support and corrective injury support for youth
Leadership Track
  • Opportunities to speak, attend and participate in events
  • Using online outlets to promote achievements, activities and stories
  • Introductions to organizations and people
  • Continued advice and consultancy support
  • Opportunities to travel to help Coaches Across Continents run training programs as a Community Impact Coach
  • Quarterly communication with MJ as part of the group, as well as access to the MJ Young Leaders Facebook group to interact online 
  • Receiving monthly curriculum specific to individual social messages
  • Invites to monthly Virtual Learning Webinars on organizational development
  • Invites to an Online Education Program - learning how to adapt and create own curriculum
  • Project support such as monitoring and evaluation, curriculum, or methodology