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Social Entrepreneurs Make their Mark at the NYU Reynolds Changemaker Challenge

October 24, 2013

Teams have just finished submitting proposals to the NYU Reynolds Changemaker Challenge (CmC), a major initiative of the revolutionary NYU Reynolds Program in Social Entrepreneurship designed to help NYU students execute their visions of sustainable and scalable social change.

The NYU Reynolds Program brings undergraduate students through a year-long curriculum that includes social entrepreneurial workshops with leaders in the field, peer-review sessions, ongoing guidance from the Reynolds team and their extensive professional network, and the development of an executive summary and a business plan.

In the Changemaker Challenge, these business plans--and the teams’ real world accomplishments--are put to the test, with select projects awarded $1,000 seed grants and additional support from Reynolds, and one team awarded a grand prize of up to $10,000 along with a host of Reynolds-sponsored resources and the title of the “NYU Reynolds Best Overall Venture.”

Since 2006, NYU Reynolds has received 374 executive summaries and 186 business plans, and has provided over $200,000 in funding to aspiring social entrepreneurs.

CmC is a powerful component of NYU’s mission to be a private university in the public service. By educating young social entrepreneurs and funding new social ventures, the NYU Reynolds Program goes hand-in-hand with work being done in a multitude of ways around the University, such as the NYU Community Fund, a university-wide charitable giving program in which employees donate money directly from their paychecks to be regranted to local nonprofit organizations through the Office of Civic Engagement.

Recent Changemaker Challenge winners have included:

  • Student to Student (Reynolds Best Overall Venture, 2013)
  • Rescuing Leftover Cuisine (seed grant winner, 2013)
  • Youth Take Charge (Reynolds Best Overall Venture, 2012)
  • Farm to Live (seed grant winner, 2012)

Student to Student (STS) aims to level the playing field for under-resourced middle school students who strive to gain entry into New York City's specialized public high schools by making academic resources available to low-income students. By providing tutoring for the Specialized High Schools Admissions Test (SHSAT) as well as individualized methods for effective study habits, Student to Student supports and encourages each pupil to recognize and reach his/her fullest potential despite systemic economic disadvantages. Learn more about their accomplishments and what lies ahead »

Rescuing Leftover Cuisine’s mission is to create a self-sustaining system for rescuing leftover food for consumption by the hungry to ultimately eliminate food waste and reduce hunger. Learn more about their accomplishments and what lies ahead »

Youth Take Charge (YTC) engages high school students in the fight against human trafficking through educational workshops and leadership training. By providing curricular materials and mentorship to teens, Youth Take Charge seeks to foster a unified coalition of self-led anti-trafficking clubs among New York City high schools. Learn more about their accomplishments and what lies ahead »

Farm to Live’s mission is: (1) to build and create organic, sustainable farms throughout the suburbs on unused space such as grassy lawns, vacant lots, and old parking lots, and (2) to empower people through ethical agriculture by providing educational programs about organic farming for local communities. Learn more about their accomplishments and what lies ahead »

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Social Entrepreneurs Attempt to Make their Mark with the NYU Reynolds Program Changemaker Challenge

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