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CIL Funding

There are a variety of funding opportunities and resources available to Swarthmore students in the Center for Innovation and Leadership. We support students interested in developing themselves and the world around them through thoughtful and ethical leadership, creative problem solving, and personal development.  If you have any additional questions about these funds please contact the CIL (cil@swarthmore.edu)!

Students can apply to the following three funds:

The Design and Development Fund (DDF)**

Open to all actively enrolled students for off-campus excursions, conferences, and events, and/or to access to resources that support their personal development as leaders and innovators. This fund is designed to equip students with the skills and tools they need to design their future in alignment with the mission of the CIL. This can include the cost of travel, ticket fees, or other expenses used to support student projects and ventures.

Application for the DDF can be found here.

**The DDF is temporarily limited to experiences or opportunities that are strictly remote and virtual. No in-person events will be funded. Students are encouraged to apply to the DDF as many times as they like. Please contact the CIL (cil@swarthmore.edu) directly to hear how we could support you!

CIL Summer Fund

Open to first-years, sophomores, and juniors ONLY. The CIL will provide a $4,800 stipend per student seeking an internship, research opportunity, etc. in innovation, management, entrepreneurship, or leadership. 

Timeline: For use May-August 2021
Applications will open in January 2021

CIL Venture Fund

Open to students or teams who demonstrate a significant commitment and passion towards their own active venture: business, social enterprise, or blended model. Interested students or teams are encouraged to apply for funding that will directly support them over the summer to work on their venture full-time.  Students receiving the Venture Fund grant will be awarded a stipend of at least $4,800.

Timeline: For use May-August 2021
Applications will open in January 2021

The Design and Development Fund

The DDF is open to all actively enrolled students for off-campus excursions, conferences, and events, and/or to access to resources that support their personal development as leaders and innovators. Students may apply for funding as individuals or as a group through a Google form application. The DDF is a reimbursement process and students will be required to submit funding requests prior to the start of the program or expenditure. In order to receive a reimbursement, students will be asked to submit all relevant receipts and a personal reflection via Google form. The full terms and conditions are outlined below. 

CIL Mission: The CIL cultivates co-curricular opportunities at the intersection of leadership, entrepreneurship, and management for students to develop into creative, adaptable, ethical individuals. 

Timeline: DDF is available to students during the academic year.

Fund Constraints:

  • The DDF is open to all actively enrolled students.
  • Funding must be approved in advance of the program or expenditure. Application requests will not be honored retroactively.
  • Funding can be used for conferences, symposia, summits, pitch competitions, hackathons, or other related events that are in line with the mission of the CIL.
  • Funding can be used to support students who are actively working on their own projects or ventures for small project costs. 
  • Students may receive funding up multiple times per academic semester, depending on the available funds.
  • Funding for international travel expenses is not available at this time.
  • Approved funding does not constitute approved absence from classes.

Post-Event Requirements: Reimbursement and Reflection:

  • A post-event Google form will be emailed to students once they are approved for to be reimbursed for event attendance. 
  • Students must attach all receipts to the Google form with a brief explanation of each expense. 
  • The Reimbursement and Reflection form must be submitted within 10 days of the event to be reimbursed.

Pre-Travel Requirements: (temporarily suspended due to travel restrictions) 
If traveling, each student requesting funding is required to complete the Swarthmore College Assumption of Risk Waiver of Liability Form.
 

CIL Summer Fund

The CIL will support select summer experiences with a stipend of $4,800 for students pursuing opportunities in innovation, entrepreneurship, and leadership. The experience must be tied to the CIL’s mission to cultivate co-curricular opportunities at the intersection of leadership, entrepreneurship, and management for students to develop into creative, adaptable, ethical individuals.

Interested students must submit an application detailing the proposed opportunity, including information on where the experience will take place and how it will contribute to their academic coursework and time at Swarthmore. Students must be in good standing in both their academic program and student conduct. As part of the application process, students must consent to a review of their student records to determine eligibility.

Timeline:

  • Applications will open in January 2021
  • Decisions will go out via email in early March
  • Funding is meant to support an experience between May and August, 2021

Requirements: 

  • Application 
  • Resume 
  • Transcript (unofficial)
  • Be in good standing both academically and in student conduct
  • Students awarded CIL summer funding will be required to produce a report at the end of their summer experience

Some summer experiences are supported through endowed funds.  Applicants will be informed after the application process if their summer experience grant comes from the following endowed fund.  

  • The Jason '90 and Ashley Cummins Summer Internship Endowment Fund was established in 2019 with the conviction that professional experience during college has a profound and lasting impact on one's chosen profession and future success. The Fund provides stipends for summer internships or research that emphasize business, innovation, and entrepreneurship. Preference for this Fund will be given to students who have successfully demonstrated how the proposed internship experience relates to their intellectual goals, connects to their major or minor area of study, and/or who's experience maps onto their senior capstone project. The recipient(s) will be chosen by the Center for Innovation and Leadership.  

 

CIL Venture Fund

The CIL Venture Fund is a grant award that aims to support students who demonstrate a significant commitment and passion towards an active venture: business, social enterprise, or blended model. This fund is intended to support the growth of a venture and should be used after compelling work and research has gone into a project rather than at the inception of the project.  Interested students or teams are encouraged to apply for funding that will directly support them over the summer to work on their venture full-time.  Students receiving the Venture Fund grant will be awarded a stipend of at least $4,800. 

Timeline: 

  • Applications are open in January 2021
  • Decisions will go out via email in early March
  • Funding is meant to support project development between May and August, 2021 

Fund Constraints:

  • All applicants must be actively enrolled Swarthmore College students at the time of application.
  • The CIL is able to provide up to 4 students with Venture Funding each year.  
  • Students are eligible and encouraged to apply as a team (2-4 members) and the team’s application will be assessed collectively.
  • Students are not eligible to receive Venture Funding if they receive summer funding from any other college office or department. 
  • Students are not eligible to receive Venture Funding if they are: Lang Opportunity Scholars, Periclean Scholars, on a Davis Projects for Peace team, or receiving funding from the Swarthmore Foundation from the Lang Center for Civic and Social Responsibility. 

Requirements: 

  • Funding will be granted based on the level of detail and commitment the student(s)  have demonstrated to their project in relation to the identified goals for the venture. 
  • All applicants are required to have a venture funding advising session with a CIL staff member before submitting an application through Wizehive.
  • Applicants must have faculty or staff sponsorship to apply via a recommendation from the faculty or staff member via Wizehive.
  • Applications will be submitted through the CIL Wizehive submission portal including but not limited to the following:
    • Description of the project and evidence of a research-based approach to the value of the venture.
    • List of students or individuals actively involved in the project and their role(s).
    • 1-page Business Model Canvas
    • 3 minute pitch video (if this is a group proposal, the group should submit one video)
    • Detailed budget request with justification for each line item. 
    • Goals and outcomes for the project that align with the budget request.
  • Students awarded CIL Venture Funding will be required to produce two quarterly reports over the course of the summer intended to simulate with the experience of working with a funder in the future.