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November 07, 2023 | Tom Ballard

First deadline for “Climate Innovation Accelerator” is later this month

Hosted by The Wond’ry, Vanderbilt's innovation center, it is a 10-week, no-cost program exclusively for minority-led small businesses and nonprofits. 

Applications are now being accepted for Vanderbilt University’s “Climate Innovation Accelerator.”

Hosted by The Wond’ry, Vanderbilt’s innovation center, it is a 10-week, no-cost program exclusively for minority-led small businesses and nonprofits. These clients are then paired with a student team and skilled mentor to help identify, scope, and analyze a climate innovation within their mission or business model to advance their sustainability goals.  The program runs from early February to mid-April.

There are four deadlines, depending on the applicant.

  • Client applications from small business owners and nonprofits are due November 27. Click here to apply.
  • Team lead applications from students interested in leading a student team are due January 14. Click here to apply.
  • Applications from students  who want to apply solo or be matched with a team are also due January 14. Click here to apply.
  • Mentor applications from individuals interested in serving as a team advisor are due January 15. Click here to apply. 

Space is limited to 10 teams (40 students, 10 mentors, and 10 clients), and The Wond’ry notes that there was a waiting list for the inaugural program. 

For students, no climate or innovation experience is necessary, but priority will be given to students that provide a compelling reason why they want to participate and can contribute towards an inclusive representation of colleges across the campus. That’s not the case for mentors. As described on the program’s website, “This role is for seasoned sustainability and innovation professionals that have a heart for community and a head for novel solutions. This role requires working with student teams and fostering intentional conditions to support them to lead and consult the client in dynamic ways.”

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