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Watson Institute Venture Accelerator

Equipping impact and growth-driven enterprises to achieve product-market fit and scale.


Thank you for your interest in the Watson Institute Venture Accelerator. We are excited to continue our work supporting impact-focused leaders and entrepreneurs like you!

The application for the program is closed.

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Meet the 2023 Fellows

The Watson Institute Venture Accelerator is a 16-week program designed for impact-driven entrepreneurs seeking to elevate their ventures with access to a global network, training designed to strengthen skills, and mentorship with seasoned professionals, venture capitalists, and executives. The program will kick off with an in-person Immersive in Boulder, Colorado. The remainder of programming is virtual and provides award-winning training, committed mentorship, and a powerful community of peers for next-generation entrepreneurs to advance their impact-focused ventures and lives.

This program is designed to complement the entrepreneurs’ existing venture work, allowing them to implement learnings in real-time.

Dates & Details

  • This is a 16-week program with weekly programming from July 20th – October 31st.
  • The program launches with an in-person Immersive in Boulder, Colorado. The Immersive will take place from July 20th – July 28th.
  • During the remaining 14 weeks, the weekly time commitment is approximately 6–8 hours per week.
  • Participate in the Fellowships culminating event called Summit where Fellows pitch to local leaders, funders, and entrepreneurs.
  • Fellows can earn up to $4,000 in venture development stipend opportunities.


  • Entrepreneur leading an early-stage social impact venture with demonstrated impact metrics and traction.
  • Able to commit to the 16-week program including the in-person Immersive in Boulder, Colorado with a weekly time commitment of 6–8 hours per week.
  • From any geographical location with a preference to applicants from the USA, Brazil, China, Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, and Tanzania.

This program is funded by a variety of fellowships offered through our generous partners. Each of these Fellowships have specific social impact or geographical preferences. For more information on our Fellowships go here.

Program Elements

The Watson Institute Venture Accelerator provides award-winning training, committed mentorship, and a powerful community of peers to equip Fellows with the tools and knowledge they need to support their venture’s continued development and impact.

Application Process

  1. Applications Submitted: Complete the online application: The online application contains 4 short essay questions and should take about 45 minutes to complete.
  2. Applications Reviewed: Our admissions team will review applications on a rolling basis starting in mid-March.
  3. Interview: Qualified applicants will be invited to a 20-minute Zoom interview. Interviews will begin April 1st, 2023.

4. Fellowship Allocation: Applicants are considered for a variety of full-ride fellowships. Learn more about our prestigious fellowships.

5. Fellows Notified: The admissions team will begin sending out final acceptances and fellowship awards in early May.

6. Fellows Confirm & Enroll: Fellows finalize enrollment by signing Watson’s Memorandum of Understanding (MOU).

Watson Alumni are Making an Impact


Watson Institute’s 349 Scholars and alumni from 69 countries have raised over $175 million, created over 1,500 part or full-time jobs, and impacted 5 million people around the world through initiatives they help lead. Watson alumni have been selected to Y Combinator, the Echoing Green Fellowship and Forbes’ 30 under 30 list, and continued their education at Harvard University, New York University, and Princeton University, among others.

Meet the 2023 Fellows