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Program Snapshot

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Quarterly Themes 

The King Global Leadership Program (KGLP) focuses on a different theme each quarter, such as science & technology, social issues, climate change, government and policy, arts and music, and education. Throughout each quarter, Knight-Hennessy Scholars (KHS) offers a wide range of optional programming, most of which takes place over breakfast, lunch, or dinner to accommodate scholars' busy academic schedules. Scholars choose to participate at different levels depending upon the requirements throughout their degree programs.

Table depicting the KGLP weekly program schedule. The King Global Leadership Program follows a predictable weekly schedule. KHommon Ground for first year Scholars takes place on Monday’s at noon and Wednesday Mornings. Elective events are slotted for Tuesdays and Wednesdays during Lunch, and Thursdays are reserved for keynote events.

Program Highlights

Town Hall  

The entire KHS community gathers for Town Hall on an evening during the first week of each academic quarter. Town Halls are an opportunity to preview the quarter ahead, to gather ideas for future programming, and to build deeper connections across cohorts.

McMurtry Leadership Lectures

Funded by the McMurtry family, these quarterly lectures include a presentation by an inspiring speaker followed by a candid discussion with scholars. Scholars who have a passion for the topic introduce the speaker and moderate the conversation. Past McMurtry Leadership Lecture speakers include philanthropist Melinda Gates, author Isabelle Wilkerson, economist Raj Chetty, Nobel Laureate Frances Arnold, former Secretary of State George Shultz, and astronaut Ellen Ochoa.

KHeystone Projects 

During Autumn quarter, scholars pitch ideas for a KHeystone Project at the annual Ideas Festival. During the year, the KHS team identifies potential mentors and provides workshops to help teams develop their ideas. In the Spring quarter, teams share what they learned and accomplished at the KHeystone Project Showcase. Past projects have addressed issues such as education inequity, climate change, healthcare access, homelessness, and criminal justice reform. Some projects continue for multiple years.

Curiosity Corner 

KHS invites experts from across campus and the community to share their experiences and knowledge with the scholars. These sessions, designed to provide exposure to a breadth of disciplines, include a short talk followed by a prompt for scholars to discuss. Examples include a robotics expert challenging scholars to think about how robots will change our lives; a bioethicist challenging scholars to consider the consequences of gene editing; and an educator asking scholars to consider the role of schools in addressing economic inequality.

Global Travel Study

Scholars receive exposure to different cultures through the KHS Global Travel Study program. Stanford faculty lead and curate one-week long trips that take place after classes end in June, before classes begin in September, and over the December break. Each scholar may take one global trip during their time in the program. Examples of past and future destinations include Berlin, Costa Rica, China, Norway, South Africa, Jordan, and Turkey.

Scholar-Driven Events

Scholar-Driven Events are created by scholars for scholars to build community, learn from one another, and explore leadership together. Examples include Deep Dive, where one scholar interviews another about their life journey in a caring and supportive environment; KH Geographic, where scholars share information about their home country; and panel discussions on topical issues, such as criminal justice reform or the national COVID-19 response. 


KHS hosts local weekend retreats each year to build community and a shared culture. The first-year cohort attends the Autumn Retreat. Scholars from across all cohorts are invited to attend the Spring Retreat.