Rob Katz

Engineers for Social Impact Fellowships

E4SI logoAttention Indian engineering undergrads: the Engineers for Social Impact (E4SI) fellowship program has opened its annual recruitment process. E4SI matches the most talented undergraduate students from fifteen elite Indian engineering schools with partner social enterprises that focus on development by means of sustainable for-profit entrepreneurship.

I am a big fan of this program, which was co-founded by NextBillion staff writer alum Nitin Rao. (Side note: Nitin developed the idea while a StartingBloc Fellow, another fantastic program that I can’t recommend enough.) The E4SI fellowships combine the best of consulting, technology, and social innovation. Fellows get unprecedented access to the development sector as they work with leading social entrepreneurs, attend leadership workshops at the Indian School of Business, Hyderabad, and pitch their ideas to thought leaders as they join an outstanding cohort of exceptional young leaders.

Partner social enterprises for the 2009 edition of the E4SI fellowship program are leaders in microfinance, multiple bottom-line investment advisory, education, energy, and healthcare. They include Ujjivan, one of the fastest growing microfinance institutions in India; Intellecap, a strategic advisory firm that mobilizes investments for socially-motivated businesses; iDiscoveri, an experiential education organization focused on self-discovery and meaningful learning in economically emerging societies; Solar Electric Light Company (SELCO India), a company that provides reliable, affordable, and environmentally sustainable energy services to rural homes and businesses; D.light Design, an organization that believes everybody deserves modern light and provides innovative solutions for people living in a power constrained world; dhanaX, an award-winning online-offline person-to-person lending platform that draws inspiration from the entrepreneurial spirit of thousands of small farmers, underprivileged women, and small business owners across the globe; and Vaatsalya, a company that seeks to expand rural and semi-urban healthcare by building and managing hospitals where they are needed most.

E4SI Fellows will be selected from the following undergraduate engineering schools throughout India: BITS Pilani, BITS Goa, IIT Bombay, IIT Delhi, IIT Guwahati, IIT Kanpur, IIT Kharagpur, IIT Madras, IIT Roorkee, IIIT Allahabad, IIIT Hyderabad, NIT Trichy, NIT Warangal, NITK Surathkal, and NSIT.

The program looks for candidates who demonstrate a keen interest in entrepreneurship and believe in development through enterprise. E4SI Fellows, as leaders in their peer groups, will raise awareness of sustainable opportunities being brought about by social initiatives.

For more information on the Engineers for Social Impact fellowship and details on how to apply for the 2009 edition, please visit the E4SI website. Applications will become available online today, January 15, 2009 and are due back on February 22, 2009. Fellows, chosen by an eminent panel of judges with degrees from Harvard, MIT, the University of Michigan, and Yale, will be declared on March 11, 2009.