The Empower Program for Social Entrepreneurship educates, mentors, and motivates aspiring social entrepreneurs at Tufts. Empower is a program for...

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Empower Program for Social Entrepreneurship

The Empower Program for Social Entrepreneurship educates, mentors, and motivates aspiring social entrepreneurs at Tufts. Empower is a program for undergraduate and graduate students to engage in practical experiential learning in social entrepreneurship.

The program also sponsors events, lectures, and workshops that shape discourse on social entrepreneurship. Through our alumni network we aim at forming a mentorship system for developing aspiring social entrepreneurs at Tufts.

Empower helps students develop the attitudes, skills, and knowledge necessary to pursue entrepreneurial ventures with a social perspective — with a particular focus on poverty alleviation.

Apply for a 2015 Empower Grant

Please get in touch with us if you have questions or ideas to pursue. Our current and past fellows are an open community.

The Empower Fellowship provides the opportunity for students to launch social enterprises, participate in internships and conduct applied research related to social entrepreneurship in international or local community development. The fellowship offers either a grant or stipend for students to pursue these opportunities and allows students to join the Social Entrepreneurship Network at Tufts, which encourages collaboration, mentorship, and the promotion of social entrepreneurship on campus.

The Empower program offers three types of fellowships:

Empower Fellowship — Social Entrepreneurship Grant

The Empower Program will fund individuals who want to become social entrepreneurs, start their own social enterprise or continue working on their social ventures. Social entrepreneurial initiatives and social enterprises are organisations that use market and business mechanisms to achieve social goals. Empower does not give out seed capital for such ventures. Although not exclusive, examples of what Empower is willing to fund include travel, accommodation and board costs for students developing ventures.

Empower Fellowship — Internships

Empower funds and places students in internship positions with social entrepreneurs and social enterprises all over the world. All grants go towards individual cover of expenses such as airfare, housing and transportation for internships outside the Great Boston area over the Summer and Winter breaks.

There are two kinds of internships eligible for an Empower Fellowship:

Empower Fellowship — Applied Research

To obtain the Fellowship for applied research, applicants must be prepared to demonstrate that their project is a market analysis, impact assessment or evaluation for program development of a social venture. Applicants are required to work with/for a host organisation and must have a letter of affiliation stating that their work is needed for any of the above. It is imperative to have a tangible deliverable at the end of the research period, preferably a report to the organisation. The deliverable cannot be limited a thesis, though applicants are encouraged to use the data from the project for their thesis.

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Program At-a-Glance


Social Entrepreneurship

Areas of Study

Featured Events

Program Size


Year Founded



EMPOWER in Hargeisa, Somiland

Empower in Nigeria 2014

Empower in Vietnam

Empower Project in Armenia

Empower Project in Bangladesh

Empower Project in Bolivia

Empower Project in Egypt

Empower Project in Guatemala

Empower Project in India

Empower Project in Morrocco

Empower Project in Nicaragua

Empower Project in Tanzania

Empower Project in Thailand

Empower Project in Uganda

EMPOWER Research: Darmaji Village and Karawang, Indonesia

Empower Projects & Events

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Empower: Hannah Freedman and Arts-Based Learning

Hannah Freedman is in the class of 2017 and an Empower fellow.  She interned with the African Youth Leadership Experience in Uganda this past summer.

Empower: Nitya Agrawal Interviews with Locals in Bucerias, Mexico

Nitya Agrawal is in the class of 2017 and is an Empower fellow.  She interned in Mexico this past summer.  

Empower: Steven Koltai Lecture

The Empower Program for Social Entreprenuership and the Tufts Entrepreneurs Society welcomed a lecture from entrepreneur and double-jumbo Steven Koltai.