Announcing the 2013 Ashoka U – Cordes Innovation Award Winners

Submitted by: Tsega Belachew on 03/29/13

As more and more colleges and universities seek to launch and grow social entrepreneurship programs on campus, there is an even greater need to share expertise, challenges, and inspiration for creating positive social and environmental impact.

The Ashoka U Exchange, hosted at the University of San Diego from February 21 – 23, 2013 seeks to address this need by bringing together over 150 colleges and universities representing forty countries to share best practices and advance collaborative projects both across campuses and with social entrepreneur practitioners.

To highlight some of the most high-impact and replicable innovations, Ashoka U and the Cordes Foundation will recognize six promising educational approaches in social entrepreneurship with theAshoka U – Cordes Innovation Awards. The six winners are:

  • More than Money Careers created and taught by Mrim Boutla and Mark Albion, Co-Founders and Managing Partners at More Than Money Careers. More Than Money Careers online modules make career centers as effective with impact-driven students as they are with students interested in more traditional career paths.
  • Lend for America Fellowship led by Vanessa Carter, Executive Director at Lend for America. Lend for America is a national membership organization that guides college students in starting campus-based microfinance groups in the United States.
  • Global Citizen Year Counts for College developed by Abby Falik, Founder and CEO of Global Citizen Year, provides a world-class “bridge year” experience to high school graduates from diverse backgrounds who exhibit exceptional leadership potential.
  • Changemaker Central is a student-led university-based initiative with co-working spaces at all four Arizona State University (ASU) campuses. It was created by students for students and represented by Kaitlyn Fitzgerald, Student Director of Changemaker Central.
  • Frontier Market Scouts fellowship program turns compassionate and capable young professionals into talent scouts and investment managers serving local entrepreneurs and social-minded investors in low-income and capital-weak regions of the world. It was founded by Yuwei Shi of Middlebury's Monterey Institute of International Studies, Sabiha Malik of Sanghata Global, and Ross Baird of Village Capital. 
  • Design for America is an award-winning nationwide network of interdisciplinary student teams and community members using design to create local and social impact. Founded at Northwestern University’s McCormick School of Engineering by Liz Gerber, Mert Iseri, Hannah Chung, and Yuri Malina. Led by Sami Nerenberg, Thea Klein-Mayer, Kayla Matheus, Daniel Rees Lewis, and a nation-wide network of students and volunteers.

The awardees were selected by a prestigious panel of judges consisting of social innovation thought leaders: David Castro, Ashoka Fellow and Founder and President of iLead; Christy Chin, Portfolio Director at the Draper Richards Kaplan Foundation; Ron Cordes, Co-Founder of the Cordes Foundation;Kippy Joseph, Associate Director of Innovation at the Rockefeller Foundation; and Regina Starr Ridley, Publishing Director at the Stanford Social Innovation Review.

The 2013 Ashoka U – Cordes Innovation Awardees demonstrate how students, faculty, and community members can achieve social impact through colleges and universities - from admissions, curriculum, and career services, all the way to community and alumni engagement.

Following the Ashoka U Exchange we asked each of the awardees to further discuss their high-impact and replicable innovations in social entrepreneurship education to create the Cordes Innovation Award Series.  Click on the winners below to see their post!

To see the entire series on the Cordes Innovation Awards click here.