How does NewSchools define a “startup”?
To be considered a start-up, the organization may have been in operation for up to two years. Applicants who have only worked on their organization on a part-time basis or have yet to start the organization are generally considered eligible.
I am creating a new project within an existing organization. The new project will be completely under my control and direction. Am I eligible?
No. To be eligible for consideration, the program must be independent and autonomous. It cannot be under the management of another organization. It cannot depend on another entity for funding or access to funds.
My organization has a fiscal sponsor. Am I still eligible to apply?
Yes. The EIR will create an autonomous organization. However, as fiscal sponsors generally only provide support and do not exert control over organizational decisions, you are still eligible for a fellowship so long as this applies to your situation.
My project is structured as a for-profit organization. May I apply?
Yes, as long as you meet our other eligibility criteria.
What’s the time commitment?
If you are awarded the residency, you are expected to commit full-time (40 hours/week) to your organization. In other words, you will not be able to continue in your current full-time employment if you accept this residency.
Do I need to have 501(c)(3) status before I can apply for a residency?
No, you do not need to establish 501(c)(3) status or register your organization before you apply.
I have never run a social enterprise before. May I still apply for the residency?
Yes. NewSchools identifies and supports talented, early stage entrepreneurs.
My organization was founded by several people. Can we all apply for the residency?
No. Only two founders may apply per organization. As a result, please choose two, at most, to represent your organization in the application process.
What kind of person makes a good candidate for the EIR program?
Successful candidates are bold, innovative problem solvers who are determined to improve the way educators are prepared to teach and to impact student learning in classrooms. They are relentless in their desire to make a substantive difference in teacher training and are driven by a commitment to children and a belief that all students can achieve at high levels. They have a past record of accomplishment that indicates they can initiate and implement an ambitious plan meeting the highest standards of ethical behavior. Finally, successful applicants will have exceptional entrepreneurial drive, proven impact and influence skills, strong analytic and conceptual thinking abilities.
In order to be eligible to apply for the EIR program, at what stage in development does my initiative need to be?
The purpose of the EIR program is to provide opportunities for promising education entrepreneurs to develop new solutions to improving teacher preparation in the United States. Candidates may propose initiatives that are in the conceptual or early stages of development. Candidates may also be further along in their work but need additional support to fully develop and launch their ventures. All successful candidates will have compelling visions for dramatically bettering the education of underserved students; they will also have the entrepreneurial skills necessary to succeed.
What experience do I need to apply? Are you looking for people in a certain age group or geographic region?
The EIR program is open to entrepreneurs of all ages, backgrounds and experience levels and to applicants from cities/regions, both urban and rural, and states across the U.S.
Should I apply as an individual or as a partnership?
NewSchools provides the option to apply as a single person or as a two people. Both partners must individually be able to work full-time (40 hours per week) for the duration of the residency and be clear co-founders and co-leaders in the organization.
May I attach supplemental materials to my application or submit them to your office?
No. Any extraneous materials submitted will be discarded immediately and not reviewed. We will not accept or review any other documents (e.g., letters of inquiry, business plans) in lieu of the online application.
What’s my employment status as an EIR?
Entrepreneurs are full-time employees of NewSchools while they are in residency. They are eligible for full health insurance benefits, including vision and dental. The residency is a full-time responsibility: EIRs may not have additional employment, consulting contracts, or other professional responsibilities.
Does an EIR’s idea for a new initiative remain their intellectual property during the residency or does the idea become NewSchools’ property?
EIR’s ideas and initiatives are their own. EIRs own their initiatives and are ultimately responsible for the success of their initiatives. Upon completion of their residency, the EIR has no ongoing responsibility to NewSchools; however, it is NewSchools’ expectation that the EIR will continue to lead the initiative that he or she incubated and developed with its support. There is a potential for NewSchools to invest seed funding into the venture after the incubation period ends, depending on the status of the venture.
What type of training and support is provided through the EIR program?
EIRs will receive professional and financial support to develop and launch their ventures. EIRs will receive mentoring from the NewSchools partner who oversees all human capital investments as well as spend time on the ground learning from the CEOs and Founders of teacher preparation ventures in our portfolio. Support will take different forms including: introductions to education leaders, policy makers, community leaders, local media and potential funders, advice and support on developing a fundraising strategy; advice and support in organizational development, including structure, governance, and accountability issues. Training will also include an additional $1500 professional development stipend.
What happens after I submit a Statement of Intent online?
All candidates who submit a Statement of Intent online will receive an email confirming receipt of their materials. Successful candidates who advance to the first round interviews will be contacted by April 12 to schedule a phone interview the following week.
Who makes the final selection of residents?
NewSchools Venture Fund will make the final decision on the EIR selection.
Will NewSchools share any information submitted by applicants with anyone not part of the review process?
No. All information submitted to NewSchools by applicants will be kept strictly confidential.