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.
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.
Curriculum & Skill Development
Through hands-on learning, the Watson Institute Venture Accelerator will engage in practical entrepreneurial & leadership centric courses.
- Team Management for Impactful Organizations
- Data & Metrics
- Marketing & Personal Branding
- Impact Focused Sales
A diverse cohort of entrepreneurs, small business owners, and nonprofit founders will form partnerships, collaborations, and further their growth and impact during and after the program. Community building activities include:
- Engagement with Watson Institute Alumni
- Self-organized Fellow events
- Basecamp Activities
Mentorship & Networking
Fellows are provided with multiple mentorship opportunities from business leaders, venture capitalists, and enterprise executives. Mentorship engagements include:
- Preceptor Advisory Board
- Impact Speaker Series
- Mentor Bonanza
- Applications Submitted: Complete the online application: The online application contains 4 short essay questions and should take about 45 minutes to complete.
- Applications Reviewed: Our admissions team will review applications on a rolling basis starting in mid-March.
- 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.
Tessa Zimmerman ’16, USA
Tessa is the Founder and Executive Director of Upstream Education. Upstream Education is a nonprofit organization that trains and equips educators in bite-sized tools to help students reduce their stress and anxiety. Since 2016, ASSET has grown to impact 40,000+ students weekly.
Abhinav Khanal ’17, Nepal
Abhinav is the Co-Founder of Bean Voyage, a feminist nonprofit working to eradicate the gender gap in farming communities of Costa Rica by providing training to smallholder women in coffee production. Bean Voyage has supported 100 households and impacted 480 individuals.
Richardo Rocha ’18, USA
Richardo is the CEO and Founder of Bondadosa. Bondadosa delivers healthy, affordable, and culturally appropriate groceries to primarily Hispanic families across Denver. Bondadosa has fulfilled over 180,000 orders in 2020 alone, created over 70 jobs, and raised over $720,000.
Claudine Migisha ‘20, Democratic Republic of Congo
Claudine is the Founder of Nguvu Ya Africa (Power of Africa) an organization committed to peace and sustainability by creatively breaking the cycle of trauma and economic crisis facing the marginalized girls and women living in Congo through arts and social enterprise.
Amani Simbayobewe ’21, Rwanda
Formerly a street kid during the 1994 Rwandan Genocide, Amani Founded Rukundo Foundation, which launched in 2017. Rukundo Foundation provides education to street children in Rwanda. Today, the foundation has 8 team members and works with 22 children.
Carolina Sapienza Bianchi ‘22, Portugal
Carolina is the CEO & Founder of Mudatuga a startup that transforms regular people into composting ninjas.They offer educational workshops and a compost bin made in Portugal from a composite of cork residues and recycled polymer. Mudatuga has implemented environmental education projects and taught composting methods to over 1,900 people.