OCB are now closed for applications.

Applications will reopen in May 2024.

What is the OCB vision for LEAP?

The goal of LEAP is to ensure we develop a talented workforce and future leadership that reflects the great diversity of the organization.


When selecting for the LEAP, OCB will consider a person’s capacity for strategic vision, innovation and critical reflection. We look to complement operational humanitarian experience with academic expertise in both medical and non-medical subject areas.  

Who is it for?

LEAP is here to support MSF’s current and potential leaders, with an emphasis on ensuring the programme is accessible to those who would otherwise not have the means to pursue a postgraduate level qualification.


For OCB, we have based our selection criteria on the following:


The universities’ standard entry requirement is an upper-second Bachelor’s degree (2:1) or international equivalent and a proven C1 level of English language. If you have developed your skills through professional experience in the humanitarian sector, you will also be considered, even if you do not have a university degree.


Your application should emphasize the relevant aspects of your professional experience and demonstrate your ability to produce written work.


We particularly encourage applications from those who have, as a minimum, some management experience within their role, and/or those who are technical specialists. This includes but is not limited to: non-medical coordinators and deputies/assistants, supervisors, activity managers and medical profiles who have an interest to become a generalist management profile (Project Coordinator, HoM, ...).

The LEAP Programme represents a significant investment on the part of MSF into its staff and is intended to help staff develop into strong humanitarian leaders. This programme is offered in good faith that the graduates will remain with MSF for some time after graduation. As such, please refrain from applying if you are aware that your contract with MSF is coming to an end and you are unlikely to return to MSF employment in the near future.

How will we prioritize applicants?

Candidates will be short-listed based on their aptitude, motivation, critical thinking and relevant experience, as reflected in their application package.


Up to 10 places are available. Participants will be split evenly to start in the January 2024 and September 2024 semesters (there will be an option to allow candidates to state their preference for which semester they would like to start in).


A final selection for both cohorts will be done by a committee of MSF representatives in June/July 2023. There will be an emphasis on ensuring the programme is accessible to those who would otherwise not have the means to pursue a postgraduate level qualification.


Please note that this is a highly competitive programme and that 10 places correspond to a small fraction of the total applicants.

Course Delivery and Study Pathway

Please note, the delivery format for the semester starting in January 2024 is currently planned as blended, which combines face-to-face and online teaching (including intensive courses taught over 1-2 weeks in the UK). Please visit the internal LEAP website for any changes in delivery format due to the pandemic, and the external LEAP website for more information on the course content.


Successful OCB candidates will initially be enrolled on the PG Certificate pathway with the possibility of extending this to a PG Diploma and then further to the MSc (Masters) in the future.


This change is proposed because of the nature of MSF work, which can make longer-term commitment more difficult for learners.

For candidates interested in studying specific individual modules, please visit the standalone modules webpage for further information. 

How to apply? 

If you wish to apply for the PG Certificate, please provide:



Please see the first page of the online application form for more information.


We strongly recommend that you discuss with your DA, HRDev, HRCo and line manager about your application. If you are shortlisted, they will be informed and if you are successful in your application you will need to agree upon your study time and modules choices with them to ensure they are feasible for your mission. The more they are on board, the higher the likelihood is you will receive their support!


Incomplete applications will not be considered.


There are two phases in the selection process: an internal MSF process and then one at the University of Manchester. If you are selected by MSF, you will be informed and then invited to apply directly to the University of Manchester, who will make the final decision on your application. At this point, you will also need to take a certified English test to ensure you meet the standard English requirements for the programme. Please see further information here.


Every candidate will receive an individual response with a short note regarding their application by the beginning of July 2023.

Click here to watch the LEAP info session held on 01/06/23 

English Language Information

It is essential that your English language level is at a C1 minimum to take the LEAP.

You can take an online E F SET test, free-of-charge, to give you an idea of your level. 

The results of this test will be required for your application.

For a full guide on the English language test equivalents, please see this document.  

Practical information for those managing LEAP students 

If you are an HRCo or line manager responsible for the management of LEAP students, please refer to the OCB LEAP information pack for details on all aspects of LEAP, including study-leave guidelines, the resources to be provided at mission-level, and module selection. You can also refer to the LEAP information session recorded on 01/06/23 and the LEAP conditions defined on Sherlog


The course fees (university tuition) are covered by MSF UK. Attendance costs for staff (visas, accommodation, travel) will be fully covered by OCB for the face-to-face sessions. More information can be found on the LEAP FAQ page.

Contact Details

If you would like more information about the OCB conditions for LEAP or about your application, please contact: learning-ocb@brussels.org.  

For questions related to the academic content of the LEAP courses and for queries about your specific academic background and eligibility please email: leapmsf@manchester.ac.uk.

For all general queries please email leap@london.msf.org.