Want to make a difference on your campus and join a growing national movement of bold entrepreneurial thinkers? You’re in the right place!
Each campus must submit a student and faculty application to be eligible for an interview
TWO ANNUAL DEADLINES: SPRING AND FALL
FALL DEADLINE: May 11, 2015 (midnight EST)
SPRING DEADLINE: TBA (midnight EST)
The role of a University Innovation Fellow
University Innovation Fellows act as leaders, followers, liaisons, thinkers, creators, doers, designers, pushers of boundaries and conversation starters, among many other roles. We challenge our students and push them to do what they feel is right, not what is easy.
Our teams of Fellows are trained to think critically about their entire campus ecosystem surrounding innovation and entrepreneurship. Over the course of 6 weeks, teams of candidates will survey the landscape of courses, programs, curricular and extra-curricular assets in the entrepreneurial ecosystem at their schools. This will help them identify what gaps need to be solved in order to facilitate more invention and innovation activity amongst engineering, scientists and their interdisciplinary peers.
The ideas formed through this process are different for all candidates. Having a team of Fellows provides the ability to create mass amounts of ideas from a group of minds that all understand the same campus ecosystem. For some, it has meant hosting a design thinking workshop or innovation challenge on campus. For others, it’s involved holding a 1,000+ person TEDx event that provides numerous examples of faculty and student innovations that have formed real companies and achieve positive social impact. From helping create maker spaces to starting student-led venture funds, engineers and their peers are working to create lasting institutional change that will increase their student body’s exposure and opportunity to developing skills in creativity, innovation, design thinking, entrepreneurship and venture creation. To see other activities our students have created, visit the University Innovation wiki, an information sharing platform used to support university innovation as a whole.
You don’t have to do it alone!
University innovation is a huge project to tackle. We want you to know that you don’t have to do it alone! Not only are we providing access to a national network of student peers that want to tackle university innovation with you, we are providing you, your faculty sponsor and your institution the ability to put forth up to five worthy students to be a part of the University Innovation Fellows program as a Leadership Circle. We have implemented a team-based approach, as interdisciplinary collaboration is vital, and have seen great success in momentum and having direct support on campus. In doing so, you and your team of five will develop and implement strategies together and will gain greater traction in starting your innovation and entrepreneurship movement on campus. Your team will be supported by your faculty sponsor and additional champions on your campus; our team; and the network of like-minded peers that you will meet through this program virtually and at in-person events.
…the network of like-minded individuals has
provided us all with a valuable resource – each other. By speaking to one
another and sharing ideas and experiences we were able to learn from our
successes and failures and build strong programs in our respective
universities.” – Nate Smialek, UPitt
Here is your checklist to be considered for candidacy in the University Innovation Fellows program:
- Request and complete the application.
- Ask a faculty member or advisor to write a letter of support for you.
- Have a faculty sponsor ready to provide the $2,000 program fee.*
Please note that all three components need to have been received by June 30, 2014 in order to be invited for an interview. You will find the criteria for selection here to be sure that you and the other students for your Leadership Circle are a perfect fit for the program.
If you have students rallied to be a part of your Leadership Circle, your faculty sponsor needs to apply for this portion in the faculty application. If you and your faculty identify up to five strong student candidates, please make sure of the following:
- Each student will need provide a letter of support; preferably not from the same faculty person/mentor.
- Your faculty member will need to provide a letter from the College or University President (or Vice President / Vice Chancellor / Vice Provost) requesting formation of a University Innovation Fellows Leadership Circle.
- Faculty need to apply by putting forth multiple candidates on the Faculty Sponsorship Application available at http://dreamdesigndeliver.org/apply.
Applications for the Leadership Circle will be evaluated on the commitment expressed in the institutional leader’s letter of support, the breadth of class years and diversity of student majors. We look for interdisciplinary teams with students of all grade levels from freshman year to post-doc.
*You need to discuss securing additional funds with your faculty sponsor for your travel expenses. You will be invited to attend our annual Meetup in Silicon Valley and Stanford (for the students being trained in the current academic year) and one of the two regional Meetups (with all active Fellows, irrespective of cohort, within your institution’s region). There is also opportunity for other travel as we represent the University Innovation Fellows program at conferences across the nation. We foresee a total overall budget between $3,000 to $3,500 ($,2000 program fee + $1,000-1,500 travel expenses). Please also note that if you are to become a campus with a Leadership Circle, these events are very dependent on capacity, meaning only one student (selected by the student team and the faculty sponsor) may be able to attend.
The student application is actually quite simple. You’re required to provide one video that is no more than 2 minutes long and are required to choose two of three additional questions to answer by video in under 60 seconds (interview style). The remainder of the application is comprised of five questions that require twitter-sized responses. That’s right. Your answers should be in 140 characters or less, not including spaces. We suggest that you request an application, review and get started thinking about the questions at least a few days before submitting. Don’t stress out about the video… we need you to become accustomed to the video format given that, if accepted, you’ll be spending quite a bit of time with other students across the country over video-conference. Please note that each member of your Leadership Circle needs to submit a separate application. Get creative and good luck!