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The Changemaker Institute (CI) supports budding social entrepreneurs who are interested in building a business with social or environmental impact.

Changemakers (n) – People who use their skills, expertise, gifts, and power in a way that creates positive social change and affirms the humanity of all people.

Taylor’s Changemaker Institute (CI) cultivates changemakers within the Tulane community by building student capacities to identify and create lifelong pathways to tackle pressing social issues.

Whether you want to develop a novel idea or seek to partner with assets in existing organizations, the Changemaker Institute is the program for you. Prepare to be challenged, develop professionally, mentally, and spiritually, and most importantly, gain a family in the process. CI provides a unique blend of innovators and people willing to stand for a purpose they would defend with their lives. CI is truly a prominent, life-changing experience.  –Tyler Jackson (MPH in Community Health Science), Spring 2022

CI was a phenomenal experience for me. It opened my entrepreneurship horizon for a wealth of knowledge, and skillsets, and expanded my network to help my venture thrive and grow. I highly recommend other students to dive into the CI experience as the gains and benefits are priceless.”  – Renad  JadKarim (MD, MPH&TM, Ph.D), Spring 2022

CI was extremely helpful in moving my venture forward by letting me know what I needed to prioritize and improve.CI enabled me to create a plan to achieve all my goals, and beyond, for my venture.“- Ashlee Walker (DrPH​, Global Community Health and Behavioral Sciences), Spring 2022

I am so grateful for this experience! Thanks to everyone in CI for the support and brainstorming prompts to get my ideas off the ground!- Kristina Woodworth (MPH,Community Health Science), Spring 2022

What Happens During the Changemaker Institute?

Participants in the Changemaker Institute meet weekly throughout the spring semester.

During these meetings, participants gain:

  • Social entrepreneurial skills
  • Business model development skills
  • Mentorship from Tulane and New Orleans’ social entrepreneurial communities
  • Preparation for applying to funding opportunities at Tulane and beyond
  • A framework and process  to deepen one’s understanding of social issues 
  • Partnerships with change agents tackling their social or environmental issue

2022/2023 Draft Schedule

The draft schedule is below. If you are considering applying to CI, please review this schedule to see if these topics would be useful to you prior to submitting your application.

Please note each workshop is two hours long and workshop topics and dates are subject to change.

Week of Nov 28                 CI Orientation Meeting + Mentor Exploration

Week of Jan 16                 Design Research Analysis & Synthesis

Week of Jan 23                 Tackling Heropreneurship + Value Proposition

Week of Jan 30                 Building your Lean Canvas

Week of Feb 6                   Prototyping Assumptions from your Lean Canvas

Week of Feb 13                 Mission & Vision + Cohort Feedback

Mardi Gras Break 2/20         1:1 meetings with consultant of choice  

Week of Feb 27                  Selecting Your Business Entity Classification

Week of March 6               Prototype Debrief + Budgeting/Applying for Funding 

Week of March 13             Funding Your Venture (Panel)

Week of March 20             Branding

Week of March 27             Marketing

April 3 (spring break)           Create “Values” and “About us” statements (asynchronously); 1:1 meetings with marketing consultant 

Week of April 10                Building an Advisory Board    

Week of April 17                Crafting Your Pitch

Week of April 24                Pitch Practice

Week of May 1                   CI Showcase

Week of May 8                   Debrief/Synthesis & Resources moving forward

Introducing GrowthWheel Personal Coaching for Each Venture

GrowthWheel is a visual toolbox and comprehensive “work on your business” software used by thousands of business advisors, incubators, and entrepreneurship educators in 64 countries to help startups and  businesses make decisions and take action.

Our Spring 2022 Changemaker Institute cohort will benefit from regular 1:1 coaching with their advisor to comprehensively analyze their venture and create a 30-60-90 day action plan to drive their venture forward.

Changemaker Institute News

Changemaker Institute (CI) Ventures 2022

Each year, a select group of graduate students in Taylor’s social venture accelerator, the Changemaker Institute, work tirelessly on Thursdays, in the evenings and on weekends to propel their idea for social change into a viable and sustainable social enterprise.…

Spring 2021 Speakers for Tulane’s Social Venture Accelerator

This year's Changemaker Institute (CI) welcomed an incredible array of changemakers and entrepreneurs who offered their unique perspective on social entrepreneurship and skillsets needed to start and launch a business with impact. The structure of each workshop varied and speakers covered…

Introducing 2021 Changemaker Institute Mentors

The Taylor team is proud to introduce an incredible group of mentors for the 2021 Changemaker Institute cohort. These mentors commited their time and expertise to support our budding social entrepreneurs develop and hone their ideas for social change. Click…

Changemaker Institute (CI) Ventures 2021

Each year, a select group of graduate students in Taylor’s social venture accelerator, the Changemaker Institute, work tirelessly on Mondays, in the evenings and on weekends to propel their idea for social change into a viable and sustainable social enterprise.…

Access our Curriculum

Check out our 2020 Changemaker Institute Curriculum for a comprehensive view of a curriculum designed to supports graduate students interested in developing ethical, sustainable, and viable social enterprises. We wrote this for:

  1. A budding social entrepreneur interested in building out your idea but unsure about where to start.
  2. An educator interested in running a social venture accelerator and interested in comparing curriculums.
  3. A social entrepreneur interested in becoming a paid speaker or volunteer mentor with our program.
View the 2020 Changemaker Institute Curriculum

Get Funded

  • The Changemaker Institute programming offers access to funding for impact-related activities through Tulane-based grants as well as other advanced opportunities in social impact beyond campus.
  • All participants of the Taylor Changemaker Institute are eligible and coached to apply for the following funding opportunities:

The Alvarez Spark Innovation Award offers up to $2,500 to pursue a social venture idea by prototyping or testing a component of an idea.

Learn About the Victor Alvarez Spark Innovation Award

The Changemaker Catalylst Award offers up to $1500 to participate in an engaged learning experience.

Learn About the Changemaker Catalylst Award

Changemaker Institute Alumni

  • Trash to Treasure seeks to create a revolving sustainable fund for outreach project in New Orleans. T2T deliver this by collecting and selling dorm room necessities thrown away by Tulane students during move out. Their profits fund subsequent sales as well as further sustainable ventures.
  • SHRI (formerly Humanure Power) works to eradicate outdoor defecation as a normal practice for hundreds of millions of villagers in rural India by building community toilet blocks. These toilets leverage proven and existing technology that convert human waste in to energy that can be sold, generating a revenue stream that helps further their mission of building more toilets.
  • Radical Grandma Collective is a nonprofit online store that creates a platform for women to support other women in environmental justice work.
  • STEM Library Lab is a science equipment lending library that fosters academic success by providing teachers and students with access to equipment and support for high-quality active learning.
  • Fund 17 is a Louisiana registered non-profit that works to empower micro-entrepreneurs in the New Orleans community.  Fund 17 does this by providing financial education and micro-loans.
  • Network Volunteers (formerly Crescent City Connections or “CCC”) promotes and facilitates customized volunteer and cultural activities for visitors and residents in New Orleans to better connect people with community organizations in the city.
  • Top Box Foods Makes high-quality nutritious food (lean meats, fish and fresh produce) available at extremely affordable prices. The non-profit uses volunteers to deliver food, focusing on areas identified as food deserts.

Graduate Assistants

The Changemaker Institute (CI) graduate assistant works with staff to develop, organize, promote, and execute Taylor’s social venture accelerator program.

Changemaker Institute Team Members

Woman smiling wearing earrings in front of trees.

Julia Lang, M.S.

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