Social Entrepreneurship Award

Are you committed to using your business knowledge to make a positive social impact?  Do you have an idea for a sustainable solution to one of today’s most pressing social challenges, but need some help getting it off the ground? If so, the Levy Social Entrepreneurship Lab and the Kellogg Social Entrepreneurship Fellow Award are here to help.  $70,000 in seed funding and organization support are available each year for an eligible Kellogg student or team to launch a social venture post-graduation.

Information Session

An information session was held on January 10, 2013.  Slides from the information session are available here.

How it works

Kellogg students who are committed to addressing a social or environmental challenge through a novel, sustainable and well-developed vision engage in two rounds of competition for  a $70,000 award and ongoing support from the Levy Social Entrepreneurship Lab.  In return, they commit to work full time on the venture and share their insights and progress with the Levy Lab. 

Eligibility

All students completing their degree at the end of the respective academic year are eligible to compete, but must demonstrate the willingness to pursue the endeavor full time upon graduation.  The business entity may take any legal form, but must be independent and autonomous and still in the start-up phase. The central mission of the venture must be oriented to make a social impact.

Timeline

Date and ActionRequirementsSubmission Info
February 28, 2014:
Application and Overview due
Application and 7-12 page overview document (See requirements below) Email PDF to Jennifer Mayer by 5pm CST on February 28, 2014

March 17, 2014:

Announcement of candidates who advance to the next round
 
Week of April 7, 2014:
Internal Pitch Session
30 min Q&A Session Email PPT to Jennifer Mayer by 5pm CST on April 6, 2014

April 14, 2014:

Announcement of candidates who advance to the next round
 
Week of April 28, 2014:
External Pitch Session
A half day long pitch session with an external selection panel Email PPT to Jennifer Mayer by 5pm CST on April 27, 2014

Week of May 12, 2014:

Pitch to Review Board for Final Decision


Overview Document Requirements

  • Clearly and concisely articulates how the venture’s proposed idea will address the root causes or create systemic social change
  • States the theory or framework on which you base your premise of social change
  • Outlines a 3 year implementation and operational plan including staffing for several functions such as client outreach, funding, distribution and marketing
  • Indicates tangible results to date, if any
  • Defines how outcomes and success will be measured, and how this measurement is established effective practice or new to the field
  • Explains how scale will be achieved
  • Indicates the financing support plan
  • Provides a financial model with at least a 3 year projection
  • Summarizes the management team’s strengths and areas of needed management expertise, regardless of whether the expertise is currently in place
  • Identifies missing/needed resources and pathways to access them

Selection

Applications will be reviewed by a panel of judges composed of Kellogg faculty and staff, as well as practitioners with backgrounds in venture capital, entrepreneurship and social change.  Judging criteria will include the proposal’s viability, the social value created, the qualification and commitment of the applicant, and the innovativeness of the model. Criteria the judges will be considering: 

  • Is the venture self-sustaining?
  • Will the venture create significant social impact?
  • Does the venture address a root cause or deliver enduring benefit?
  • Is the approach innovative, unique or a significant improvement to existing approaches?
  • Does the leadership have a clear idea & implementation strategy?  Can they execute?
  • Is there a demonstrated viable scaling plan?
  • Has the leader demonstrated commitment to the idea and venture?

An award will only be granted if the panel unanimously agrees that a venture merits the financial commitment and demonstrates both significant social impact and financial sustainability. 

Reporting Requirements

Recipients should submit quarterly prgress reports to share their progress and learnings. A comprehensive final report is due within 60 days of the conclusion of the award.  Additionally, the recipient will be requested to mentor future Social Entrepreneurship awardees and honor speaking engagement requests from Kellogg.

Disbursement

The award will be disbursed in quarterly installments during the 12-month period.  The award is granted to the individual, meaning that the recipients are not employees of Northwestern University and therefore are responsible for their own taxes, office and supplies, insurance, etc.  Kellogg reserves the right to discontinue payments if the recipient is not progressing appropriately through the year. 

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