Women's Leadership Fellows


Lauren in front of a DC building lined with international flags and wearing official credentials

Lauren Perlik, MPA '21, former Women's Leadership Fellow

The Women’s Leadership Fellows program is a selective cohort of women currently enrolled at the Trachtenberg School.

The cohort meets monthly to build leadership and community through skills-based workshops, a mentoring program and networking events. Monthly sessions are led by vetted trainers who volunteer their time and expertise to focus on negotiation, conflict resolution, verbal and nonverbal communication and management skills.

Student co-chairs coordinate the planning and logistics of the program in partnership with the Trachtenberg School Administration.

Please direct questions about the program to [email protected].


Program Details


The Trachtenberg School’s Women’s Leadership Fellows Program prepares high-potential women to be successful public service leaders through professional development, mentorship and networking.


  • Leverage individual strengths and core competencies for leadership success
  • Foster self-empowerment and confidence-building to close the leadership gap
  • Master critical professional skills to successfully navigate workplace complexities
  • Connect dynamic cohorts of women to build community capacity

Mentorship Focus

Trachtenberg School alumnae, including previous Women’s Leadership Fellows, serve as mentors to current participants. Mentors provide fellows with coaching and professional development support. Women’s Leadership Fellows also have the opportunity to network with current and past fellows, George Washington University alumni and other professionals throughout the program.


How to Join

Do you identify as a woman in the Trachtenberg School's Master of Arts in Environmental Resource PolicyMaster of Public Administration or Master of Public Policy program? Would you like to be part of a selective, nine-month leadership program? Applications are accepted at the beginning of each fall semester for the Trachtenberg School’s Women’s Leadership Fellows Program.

Members of the cohort are chosen by the co-chairs after a competitive application process.

Applications for the 2021-22 academic year closed on Friday, September 3. Thank you to all applicants for your interest!


Current Cohort Co-Chairs

Malka Berro



Malka Berro

Malka Berro is a second-year Master of Public Policy student, with a focus on health policy. She is passionate about advocating for those living with mental illness and substance use conditions and is currently working as a policy associate with the National Council for Mental Wellbeing. Malka also has worked to advance population health with the National Academy for State Health Policy and interned in the U.S. House of Representatives. She graduated summa cum laude from Antioch College with a bachelor’s degree in Psychology and a Spanish language focus. During her free time, Malka can be found chasing after her excitable puppy, singing, or hiking around DC.

Bryanne Colby



Bryanne Colby

Bryanne Colby is a third-year Master of Public Administration student. She graduated from George Washington University with a Bachelor of Arts in International Affairs, concentrating in contemporary cultures and societies. She was a 2013 Teach For America corps member in Tulsa, Oklahoma and has taught for eight years. Bryanne is passionate about equitable policy responses to 21st Century challenges. In her free time, she enjoys reading, spending time outdoors, and traveling.

Liz Cottle



Liz Cottle

Liz Cottle is a second-year Master of Public Administration student, focusing on global social policy. She graduated from Binghamton University with a dual Bachelor's degree in Business Administration and Psychology. After traveling to Malawi and Haiti, Liz became passionate about sustainable development as a means of addressing global poverty and vulnerable populations, particularly by way of economic development and female empowerment. She is excited to expand her experience in policy after previously analyzing the mechanisms of workforce development, international development advocacy, and inclusive financial lending to merge her understanding of ground-level service, government involvement, and private commitments. Currently she works for Aceli Africa, a nonprofit increasing inclusive private sector investments to the agriculture sector in East Africa. In her free time, Liz enjoys reading, walking her dog, and playing guitar.


Current Fellows 

(2021-22 fellows will be chosen in early September)