An immersive, five-week nuclear leadership and professional development programme for future leaders in the nuclear industry.
This programme is aimed at:
Built on a foundation of instruction from the world’s leading nuclear experts, World Nuclear University’s annual immersive, five-week leadership development programme brings together nuclear professionals from around the world to share knowledge and broaden horizons. Through a mix of taught lectures, mentored group work, industry-focused projects, and technical site visits, Summer Institute Fellows will improve their leadership capabilities and team effectiveness. Learn more about the Summer Institute 2023 in Japan.
Summer Institute Fellows will:
- Gain a deeper awareness of personal leadership style
- Learn how to leverage leadership to exceed organizational goals and objectives
- Discover frameworks for building resilience into organizational culture and drive workplace innovation
- Develop a holistic perspective of the nuclear industry
- Build meaningful, lasting relationships
- Access a global network of Summer Institute Alumni
As the nuclear industry grows and evolves, so do the challenges of demonstrating good leadership in a constantly changing industry.
WNU introduced the Summer Institute in 2005 to provide future leaders with a solid foundation of core nuclear principles alongside a broad curriculum of leadership, communications, and organizational development skills.
The Summer Institute's unique curriculum is curated in collaboration with international organizations, including WNU's founding supporters, WNA, IAEA, WANO, and the OECD/NEA, and a global network of nuclear industry partners. Through these partnerships, WNU has access to a wide range of experts from nuclear nations to provide unique and balanced perspectives with the participants.
Group Work and Mentoring
Throughout the course, fellows are presented with real-life scenarios and tasked with working in small groups to solve some of the most critical issues facing the nuclear industry. Groups are curated to be culturally and professionally diverse, and comprised of fellows from different backgrounds, genders, and nationalities. Each small working group is facilitated by a mentor, who provides guidance and personal coaching to help fellows further their leadership skills and improve their organizational flexibility and resilience capabilities.
Unique Lcations and Technical Tours
Each year, the Summer Institute is hosted by a different nation from a unique region. In addition to a rigorous academic curriculum, fellows are immersed into the local culture through excursions, sightseeing, and social and cultural gatherings. The goal of these experiences is to create a strong bond between participants, while highlighting the unique offerings of the host nation.
Facilitated and independent social events allow participants to develop networking skills and cultural sensitivities that will help them lead the industry into the future. WNU programmes also offer a rare opportunity to tour the host country's nuclear facilities, allowing fellows to visit exclusive sites and interact with those who work in these facilities.
1. What materials are required for the application?
In addition to personal, academic, and professional information, the Summer Institute application requires fellows to upload the following documents in English. If documents are not in English, please provide a brief translation.
- A 300 word description of professional responsibilities
- A 300 word statement of motivation and goals for participation
- 2 signed reference letters in English (1 reference letter from your supervisor and 1 from another academic or professional referee)
- Evidence of English language proficiency (where applicable)
2. What are the English language requirements?
English is the official course language for the Summer Institute. Applicants who are not fluent in English must provide evidence of English language proficiency in the form of a recent certificate from a reputable organization.
SI Terms and Conditions
SI Code of Ethics
SI Code of Conduct
SI COVID-19 Policy
Valencia & MadridValencia & Madrid, Spain
Bucharest & BadenBucharest & Baden, Romania & Switzerland
Busan & GjeongjuBusan & Gjeongju, South Korea
2009 - 2014
Christ Church CollegeOxford, UK
The University of OttawaOttawa, Canada
DaejeonDaejeon, South Korea
Centre for Nuclear Technology (SCNT)Stockholm, Sweden
Idaho National LaboratoryIdaho Falls, USA
Dorra Lajnef, Head of Service in Tunisian Company of Electricity and Gas, worked on a feasibility study for the first NPP in Tunisia. She explains how WNU participation furthered her skills and careerRead Dorra's story
Aysha's leadership skills developed quickly and she got promoted after the Summer Institute 2018. This is her experience of the Summer Institute, and how it relates to her professional developmentRead Dorra's story
Eric Lemoine is the Director of the Systems Engineering Division at the Canadian Nuclear Regulator who built upon his experience at the WNU Summer Institute 2007 throughout his careerRead Dorra's story
Ayan Alimzhan is the Chief of Section Development Strategy Management at "NAC "Kazatomprom" JSC, in Kazakhstan. He attended the Summer Institute in 2015.Read Dorra's story
Deni's remarkable journey spans from Indonesia to Canada to the Summer Institute in the UK. Read how WNU impacted his career in waste management, developing his perspective and interests.Deni's remarkable journey
Florencia is a PhD student in Nuclear Science and Technology at Harbin Engineering University in China who built upon her experience at WNU Summer Institute 2019 throughout her career and networkFlorencia's academic developme
What is more important than creating future leaders in the nuclear industry? Nothing - and the Summer Institute is the programme that takes a group of young, intelligent and highly interested people, who are ready to learn and to take the lead.
Success and innovation is achieved when both men and women are equally involved in education and decision-making processes. The WNU Summer Institute is committed to building the next generation’s nuclear leadership by embracing the values of full participation by men and women alike. I applaud them for this.
Janice Dunn Lee, former IAEA DDG-MT
With over 40 years experience in the nuclear industry, I have seen many organizational and individual development programs but what WNU has done for the nuclear industry is far beyond the expectation and I want to personally thank you.
Amir Shahkarami, Former Senior VP, Exelon Generation, President & CEO CASe Global Partners, Inc
There are three main things, I can bring back to work after the Summer Institute: a broader appreciation for the nuclear industry as a whole, a renewed sense of confidence, and most important an international network of high-level professionals with divers backgrounds and expertise.
The Summer Institute gave me the opportunity to become part of the international community of leading international experts.
Above all, the key contribution that WNU SI had on me is the respect one earns by being there for other fellows, hence being there for the industry in general. Some of my beliefs in leadership got reinforced during group discussions and listening to the experiences of industry leaders, hence WNU SI becomes a driver for quality. Networking with fellow industry professionals is a lifetime of opportunities, friendship and fun, hence WNU SI forms a pathway for the future.
It is an experience of a lifetime. The opportunity to learn and meet giants in the industry is amazing. I cemented friendships with people from all of the globe. It is a special experience that I would recommend to anyone in the industry. I feel honoured to have been part of the 2016 WNU.
For sure the participation in SI for me played significant role in my career." […] Afterwards, "I prepared presentations for the country's leadership, in particular, for the President and the Prime Minister. Two years after my participation, we were able to organize short courses during the opening of Expo-2017 in Astana.
The SI is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to build an international peer network of nuclear professionals from all over the world and from all areas of the nuclear industry.
This was a one of a kind experience (…) I grew so much by listening to the lecturers, visiting other sites and by the day to day interactions with people from all over the world.
The WNU Summer Institute has changed my outlook for the future, both for my career and personally. Meeting such a diverse mix of people with different academic, professional and cultural backgrounds has taught me a great deal, as well as opening up a world-wide network to support me in my future career.
It is the most positive, dynamic, learning experience that you will experience in your life.
WNU Summer Institute is a unique experience. The most interesting thing was the face to face with leaders from all over the world and learning from their experience.... This unique experience allows you to discover the real work within a diverse team with people having different styles of leadership. I think this would be a very good exercise for those wishing to work in an international organization.
The Network for Nuclear innovations was a great opportunity to dig into subject matter that I had not previously gotten exposed to and offered me the opportunity to lead an international team of fellows with a diverse set of backgrounds, which stretched my management skills and got me to develop in other ways that normal work life would not have offered me.
I had the privilege to be part of the Summer Institute since its inception in 2005. In my feeling this is by far the best leadership course in the world for young people, who are going to be our leaders in the next ten to thirty years. This is the cream of the crop and in their early age they have the chance to learn from the top of nuclear leaders from all around the world. And the most important thing is that they bond. There are now 1000 of these fellows!
Alan Waltar, Retired Senior Advisor, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
My impression is that the SI just keeps getting better each year! I think it has worked out even better than originally anticipated. We continue to draw the best and brightest Fellows at about the same rate each year. The SI is a UNIQUE offering that I’m sure will be looked upon by the Fellows as a very significant juncture in their professional development. The friends that they make in the SI will be lasting and meaningful, allowing networking around the globe for their entire lifetime.
Alan Waltar, Retired Senior Advisor, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
- Network for Nuclear Innovation Magazine 2019: individual chapters in Downloads Section
- 2019 Highlights
- Survey of Women in STEM, conducted during WNU Summer Institute 2019
WNU Summer Institute 2018
WNU Summer Institute 2017
WNU Summer Institute 2016