Defense Civilian Emerging Leader Program


This page describes the DCELP application process for Army Acquisition Workforce (AAW) members ONLY. If you are not an AAW member, please check with your supervisor or your organization’s training officials for information about DCELP.

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U.S. Army Acquisition Support Center (USAASC) Director, Acquisition Career Management (DACM) Office is pleased to announce the YG 2024, Cohort 18 offering of DCELP.


DCELP is the premier Department of Defense (DOD) leader development program for civilians GS-07 through GS-12 (and equivalent broadband). During four seminars lasting one week each, participants are immersed in a variety of experiential activities that promote self-awareness, enhance communication skills, share proven team building strategies, and strengthen overall leadership capabilities. At the conclusion of the program, DCELP participants come away with the tools needed to thrive in today’s government.

Important information about DCELP Cohort 18

Each year, DOD offers two DCELP cohorts, one for the Acquisition, Human Resources (HR) and Financial Management (FM) functional communities, and one for all other functional communities.  The curriculum is the same for both cohorts, however, individuals taking part in the Acquisition/HR/FM cohort have the opportunity to meet senior leaders from those communities and to network with students from those communities across DOD.  For YG 2024, Cohort 18 is the Acquisition/HR/FM cohort and Cohort 19 is the cohort for all other communities.  Army Acquisition Workforce members may apply to either cohort.  This announcement pertains only to Cohort 18.  Individuals wishing to apply to Cohort 19 should reach out to their local training officers for information and must adhere to all procedures and requirements pertaining to that cohort.



• Announcement Opening: March 1, 2023
• Announcement Closing: May 10, 2023
• Board Review Complete: June 2023
• DOD Notification of Selectees (tentative): October 2023
• Course Start (tentative): March 2024


  •  Must be a permanent tenure, full time civilian member of the Army Acquisition Workforce.  Tenure status is indicated on your SF-50, block 24.  Block 24 must contain a “1” to apply for DCELP.
  • Must be GS-07 through GS-12 (or equivalent payband).
  • Must be Defense Acquisition Workforce Improvement Act (DAWIA) certified in current acquisition position or within the certification grace period.
  • Served 1 year, or any combination thereof, in a Department of the Army Civilian Permanent Position. This requirement must be met by the application closing date.
  • Completed Civilian Education System (CES) course:
    • GS-07 through -09 or equivalent payband: CES Basic course
    • GS-10 through -12 or equivalent payband: CES Intermediate course (Phase 1 AND Phase 2)
    • For more information about the CES courses, visit


  • Before starting the application, please read this announcement in its entirety to ensure you are aware of all program and application requirements.
  • Login at the Career Acquisition Management Portal (CAMP) using the following link:
  • Click on the “CAPPMIS” tab
  • Once in CAPPMIS, click the “AAPDS” tab
  • Click on “Apply”
  • Click on the “Apply” link associated with the event entitled “2024 Defense Civilian Emerging Leader Program (DCELP)”
  • Follow the instructions within each section of the application. After you’ve uploaded all pieces of the application, click the “Submit Application” button.  If you would like to save your work and return to the application later, click the “Save” button.
  • You must submit your application in AAPDS by 11:59 pm, EST, May 10, 2023.



The location for all sessions is the National Center for Employee Development (NCED) Conference Center and Hotel in Norman, Oklahoma. All DCELP participants, including any who might be local to the training site, must stay at the hotel for the resident sessions. DOD reserves the right to change resident sessions to virtual.


For Army Acquisition participants selected for DCELP Cohort 18, Acquisition organizations do not have any funding obligations.
DCELP Tuition, Meals and Lodging – funded by DOD
DCELP Travel and Transportation – funded by Army DACM Office
There is no central funding for rental cars for DCELP.


Learning opportunities include:

  • Reflection exercises, leadership assessments, mentoring, peer coaching, individual coaching (optional), team and individual presentations, networking opportunities, “real world” applications of lessons learned through experiential activities, and a final Capstone project.
  • Graduation requirements, including the completion of a 5-minute oral presentation and development of a personalized Leadership Roadmap and Action Plan.
  • Several opportunities to demonstrate and expand leadership skills throughout the program.

Continuous Learning Points (CLPs)

Participants completing DCELP will receive 128 CLPs.  You may add DCELP to your Individual Development Plan; you will find it in CAPPMIS ( under IDP / Planning / Other Training Plan / Add Non-DAU Training.

Start Early!

You are encouraged to start early on the application process. Your immediate and second level supervisors are required to prepare portions of the application and you are strongly advised to engage with these individuals early in the process so that you will have a complete application submitted by the closing date of May 10, 2023.


Army Acquisition applicants for DCELP Cohort 18 must follow procedures outlined in this announcement.

The documents listed below must be submitted through the CAPPMIS/AAPDS automated system (see How to Apply, above, for instruction on how to access the system).

When a form is provided for you to fill out, you must use the form provided. Applications using the wrong form will be returned to the applicant for correction, as will applications with incorrectly completed forms.

Do not attempt to upload a document that is password-protected or that contains macros as this will cause the process to fail.

  • DCELP Application Form. Download the DCELP Application Form. Fill out all sections of this fillable PDF as described below. When the form is complete, upload it as a PDF into your application in AAPDS.
    • Nominee Information Sheet:  Fill out the sheet, ensuring that all information is accurate. “Acquisition” has been entered for you as the Functional Community; do not change this.
    • Statement of Interest: The Statement of Interest should not repeat information in the resume, information sheet or any other materials submitted for the program. Rather, it should focus on why you should be selected as a participant in DCELP.  Address, in 500 words or less, the following:
      • Your strengths and character traits that make you an ideal candidate for DCELP
      • The contributions you will make to support your learning and that of your peers
      • How attending DCELP fits into your professional career development plan
      • The return on investment to the Army, your organization, and DOD
    • Supervisor Assessment: Note that this document consists of two pages. Your immediate supervisor must provide all requested information on both pages, including an assessment in 250 words or less of your supervisory/managerial potential and how DCELP will benefit you and DOD.  Ensure that ALL requested information, including all signature related information on the second page, is provided. Either digital or hand-written signatures are acceptable.
  • Resume: Please download and review the Resume Template. Use the template to create your resume using 12 point New Times Roman font with 1 inch margins and a maximum of 6 pages. Upload your resume (PDF) into your application.
  • ACRB: Ensure your ACRB is accurate prior to submitting your application. Your ACRB must document that you have served at least one year in Department of the Army Civilian Permanent Position(s). Your assignment history, training, education, and certification must match the information on your resume. Your ACRB must reflect any degrees you have obtained and the name of the school and year your degrees were completed.  Applicants may update and correct specific fields of their ACRB using the edit ACRB functions within CAPPMIS.  For those areas that cannot be changed by the applicant, the applicant may request assistance in updating their ACRB using the online help request at: check the small box next to the ACRB verification link in the application to verify your ACRB is correct.  If this block is not checked, you will receive an error message when you attempt to submit your application.
  • Current SF-50, Notification of Personnel Action: Upload your current SF-50 (PDF) into your application in AAPDS.
  • CES Course Certificate of Completion: You must upload into your application the appropriate CES documentation. Uploaded document must be PDF.
    • For GS-07 through GS-09 (or equivalent payband): CES Basic Course Certificate of Completion.
    • For GS-10 through GS-12 (or equivalent payband): CES Intermediate Course Certificate of Completion. For CES Intermediate, both Phase 1 AND Phase 2 must be completed.
    • In lieu of course certificate, you may provide copy of CHRTAS course credit documentation. For additional information on CES courses or CES course credit, visit Information on course credit can be found under Registration & Support / Equivalency & Constructive Credit.


The Army DACM Office will administer a Board to review and rate applications. Applicants will be notified of the status of their application after final results have been approved by DOD, tentatively in October 2023.





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"I have gained a great deal of knowledge from DCELP. DCELP has taught me what it means to focus on identifying leaders, how to engage them in the broader progressive movement, and how to empower them with the knowledge, strategies, and skills we can put to work to promote positive sustainable change in our professional communities. I have learned as a leader that we must always make a serious, long-term investment in our next generation of progressive leaders - now. For we're building for the I am honored and grateful for the opportunity to have attended DCELP."

- Danarius M. Hemphill, Executive Officer/Project Officer, Office of the Chief Counsel/AMSTA-L

"DCELP is a truly exceptional opportunity to meet and befriend a lot of great people and improve who you are as a person, a professional, a leader and a follower. The knowledge, skills and tools learned at DCELP are invaluable. Thank you again for giving me the opportunity."

- Kevin Graves, Contract Administrator, Mission & Installation Contracting Command, MICC - Fort Knox

"The Defense Civilian Emerging Leader Program has provided me with the ability to provide sound and effective leadership now and in the future. As an employee in a demanding and sometimes unpredictable environment, I am using the newly-acquired skills to positively affect my organization."

- Jill Salgado, Technical Writer-Editor, Intelligence, Electronic Warfare and Sensors Directorate

"DCELP was a life changer! You were given the once-in-a-lifetime chance to solely focus on your inner self in order to understand YOU so that you could better understand other people around you. Many "ah-ha" moments were experienced throughout this program and if I had to sum DCELP up in one word, it would be "AMEN"!"

- Tanya Karasavvas, Contract Specialist, Army Contracting Command - Warren


(for Army Acquisition only)
Ms. Kristine Faria
DCELP Program Manager
Army DACM Office

If you are not a member of the Army Acquisition Workforce, please check with your supervisor or your organization’s training officials for information about DCELP.