The Social Enterprise Track provides an opportunity for eligible graduate students across Harvard University to explore social entrepreneurship and test ideas for social innovation in a rigorous and supportive environment. Social Enterprise Track entries may include nonprofit, for-profit, and hybrid model business plans.


How to Apply

  1. Review Information for Participating Teams. Review eligibility requirements and download the Details for Participating Teams document.
  2. Build Your Team. Whether you have an idea or have skills to bring to an idea, visit the teams section of our website to connect with others.
  3. Enter the Competition. Apply online through the Competition website. Fill out the first 11 questions by February 3, 2016 at 12:00 pm to be eligible for expense reimbursement funding. Final entry deadline: March 9, 2016 at 12:00 pm. Download the Team Member Information Form and Intent to Present Form for the application.
  4. Develop Your Idea. Over the course of the Competition, students have the opportunity to develop their own skills as well as strengthen their venture through workshops, feedback from expert judges on written work and presentations, and multi-disciplinary collaboration. See the SE Tools section for online resources and information and the Calendar for upcoming events.
  5. Attend the Finale. Celebrate the journey and hear the winning pitches. Network with students, alumni, and judges at the Finale celebration.

Upcoming Events & Deadlines

  • Feb03
    • 03 Feb 2016
    • Social Enterprise Track
    • Deadline

    Social Enterprise Track Early Registration

    Register early for the NVC Social Enterprise Track and be eligible to receive up to $1,000 in reimbursement for approved expenses.
  • Mar09
    • 09 Mar 2016
    • Social Enterprise Track
    • Deadline

    Social Enterprise Track Intent to Present

    Submit the Intent to Present Form and Executive Summary. This is a binding contract, and once you have committed, you can no longer withdraw from the competition.
  • Mar28
    • 28 Mar 2016
    • Social Enterprise Track
    • Deadline

    Social Enterprise Business Plans Due

  Full Calendar


Most Frequently Asked Questions

Who is eligible for the student competition?

For the Social Enterprise Track, teams must meet the two following criteria: 1) include at least one student who meets one of the criteria listed on our eligibility page; 2) be composed of a majority of Harvard University graduate students, and these members must have meaningful roles in the venture and the Competition presentation.

How can I find teammates?

Both tracks hold Team Building Mixers in the fall. Additionally, see: Social Enterprise Track Teams page.

What are the advantages of registering early?

Social Enterprise will run a Workshop/Speaker series which will include "how to" seminars related to various aspects of business plan development, networking opportunities to speak with other entrepreneurs, and forums in which to test early new venture concepts and receive feedback. See the Calendar page for the full schedules. Participants can also visit the Social Enterprise Tools page to see additional track specific resources. Though not required, we also suggest that Social Enterprise Track teams participate in the Pitch for Change at the annual student-led Social Enterprise Conference, for practice and feedback at an important stage of the business plan process.

Who are the judges? What are their backgrounds?

Social Enterprise track judges will be drawn from a variety of backgrounds representing a range of industries, including those from funding organizations (including impact investors, philanthropists, and venture philanthropists), capacity building organizations, and social entrepreneurs.

 More FAQs