The Education Leaders Experience (ELE) program offers educators a unique professional development opportunity to engage with employers, community, business, and policy leaders from across Maine. Participants learn about Maine's workforce challenges and opportunities, the economy and the critical role that education plays in sustaining economic growth.

Past participants have formed unique partnerships with Maine businesses that have provided exciting learning opportunities for their students. Educators have also used the experience to launch entrepreneurial educational initiatives and services. All participants widen their networks of colleagues to draw upon after their program is complete.

ELE is a program developed and funded by Unum. Educate Maine administers the program in partnership with the Maine Principals’ Association and University of New England Online. The yearlong program consists of an opening and closing retreat; visits to Maine businesses, institutions of higher learning and the State Legislature.  Participants are eligible for contact hours and tuition discount.


We seek working educators, serving in leadership positions within their organizations, who want to join 25 of their colleagues from across Maine on a yearlong experiential journey to learn about the Maine economy. Interested applicants should be excited about forging strong relationships with business and community leaders and learning innovative ways to lead within their organizations to improve the lives of their students.



Let our Alumni tell you!

"This was probably one of the most valuable professional experiences in my career as an educator.  The connections I made with employers and other educational leaders have helped me build varied educational pathways for the students at my school." Epsilon Class

"This is the best PD experience in my 20-plus years in education!" Eta Class

"I really had no idea what to expect when I started last July. The biggest change for me was the feeling of HOPE for Maine. I know now that there are jobs and lives for young people in Maine and older people.  Maine is alive and well.  Thank you for helping me change my mindset."  Zeta Class

"This was by far the best Professional Development opportunity I have had! Not only do you get to travel around our beautiful State you get to meet people who take great pride in the work they do and, they, just like us, are trying to tap into the next generation to carry on their traditions. Every educator in the State should be able to take advantage of this opportunity."  Theta Class

Classes are capped at 25 educators. Tuition for ELE is $1,250*. This covers both retreats, expenses associated with activities during the day of sessions, and any materials. Participants cover the cost of their travel. The program begins at the end of July and finishes at the end of June. We are able to keep tuition costs low due to the generous financial support of our partner Unum.



Education Leaders Experience individual tuition for the 2024-2025 program is $1,325*.  Tuition includes program costs, materials, meals, and facilities for the orientation, the seven sessions of the program (10 days), and the graduation.  Travel expenses to and from the sessions and any necessary lodging after the opening retreat are not covered in the tuition.

Individual tuition contributions do not cover the total cost of the program. We are grateful to our corporate partner, Unum, for providing the generous support that makes this experience possible. With the help of Unum and our other partners, it is our goal to make this opportunity more broadly available to Maine’s education leaders.

*If your school has more than 50% of free and reduced lunch numbers, you may be eligible for a partial scholarship for tuition.

OTHER CONSIDERATIONS - Contact hours and tuition discount

Education Leaders Experience participants receive 80 contact hours for full participation.   

Starting in January 2024, all ELE graduates will be eligible for a 25% tuition discount from University of New England. This agreement provides access to any of the graduate education courses/programs at UNE including the Master’s, Graduate Certificates, and the Ed.D. programs. 


We are accepting applications for the Education Leaders Experience NU CLASS!


2024-2025 ELE NU Class Application  

Please contact with questions.  

Helpful Resources

Nu Class Proposed Learning Session Schedule 


Opening Retreat: July 29-30 (Sugarloaf)
Session 1: Thursday- Friday - October 3-4 
Session 2: Friday, November 8 

Session 3:  Friday, January 10
Session 4:  Friday, February 7 -Mock Legislature/Policy Day - State Capitol - Augusta
Session 5:  Friday, March 14
Session 6:  Friday, May 2 
Closing Retreat:  Monday, Tuesday- June 23-24  Moosehead Lake Region

For more information or answers to questions please email or call (207) 347-8638.

*If your school has more than 50% of free and reduced lunch numbers, you may be eligible for a partial scholarship for tuition.



Meet the Mu Class!  

Mu is the 12th cohort of Education Leaders Experience.  

Mu Class Session Schedule:


Opening Retreat: July 30-August 1 (Sugarloaf)
Session 1: October 5 and 6 - University of Maine and Aroostook County
Session 2: November 3 - Androscoggin County - postponed - re-scheduled for Friday, April 5

Session 3: January 12 - Penobscot County 
Session 4: February 9 - Mock Legislature/Policy Day - State Capitol - Augusta
Session 5: March 14-15 - Hancock County

Session 6: May 10 - Cumberland County
Closing Retreat: June 24-25  Moosehead Lake Region

A program developed and funded by 


Administered by 

 In Partnership with

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