Supporting social innovation at MHC
The McCulloch Center provides support, mentorship, and seed funding to student innovators who are developing and implementing projects to address some of the world’s most vexing challenges. It advances this agenda in collaboration with multiple units across campus, most importantly Entrepreneurship, Organizations, and Society. Under the Social Innovation Initiative (SI2), students advance projects that are grounded in the community, informed by the curriculum, and build student capacity for “effective and purposeful engagement in the world” – chiefly in the fields of education, environment and climate change, peace and human rights, poverty alleviation, and public health. Students can secure seed funding for projects that meet high standards, and can compete for conference funding.
Seed Funding Challenge
The SI2 Seed Funding Challenge will provide students an opportunity to advance an innovation project with catalytic funding for project development or planning activities. Students may compete for awards in one of two categories:
- Up to $2000 for project work, plus a personalized coaching session with a relevant expert, for a commitment of 6 weeks or more of implementation activity.
- $1000 planning grants for early stage projects or strongly conceived project concepts.
Information Sessions: March 25 and March 27, 2019 in Room 213 Blanchard, Noon-1:15 pm
Draft Proposal Submission: Sunday, March 31, 2019 (by 11:59 pm) to firstname.lastname@example.org
Final Proposal Deadline: Sunday, April 7, 2019 at 5 pm to email@example.com
Announcement of Winning Projects: Friday, April 12, 2019
How to Apply
Please refer to Key Dates above when completing these application steps: After attending an information session, you may submit a draft proposal (optional) on which the selection committee will provide feedback. All applicants must submit a final proposal with all required components (listed below) by the deadline to Kirk Lange, Associate Director of the McCulloch Center for Global Initiatives (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Required proposal components include:
- project proposal
- one page budget
- statement of sustainability and partnership
Find a proposal template in the SI2 program description and guidelines document.
Learn about some of Mount Holyoke’s inspiring social innovators
Our expanding work in social innovation
In 2016, a record-breaking 18 Mount Holyoke students were invited to attend the CGI U convening at UC Berkeley. Consistent with past years, MHC students made an outsized impact -- with Danielle Harris ('16) a member of the winning Code-a-thon team and multiple students selected for The Exchange (Woyneab Habte '17, Yan Yan '17, and Jemimah Kamau FP) -- with support from 2016 mentor Dr. Tamara Stenn.
The 2015 CGI U convening was held March 6-8 at the University of Miami. Twelve Mount Holyoke were invited to Florida, to turn their ideas into action. Many of these students developed their Commitments to Action in MHC's Social Innovation Lab, led by Elizabeth Long Lingo, who accompanied the students to the conference. They also found inspiration in the 2014 CGI U cohort, two of whom were invited to return to the global convening for a second year.
In 2014, fourteen MHC students -- proposing innovative solutions from Afghanistan to Zimbabwe -- were selected to participate in the CGI U meeting March 21-23 at Arizona State University, where they networked with international experts and other student leaders. In Phoenix, Celine Mudahakana ('16) was invited to showcase her project, Weaving for Peace, at the prestigious CGI U "Expo" while Prarthana Bhattarai ('15) and Jazmin Locke ('14) were chosen as two of only 23 Resolution Project Fellows from among more than 1000 participating students.