Social Entrepreneurship Scholars

    Social Impact    ~    Community Development     ~     Public Policy     ~     Sustainability

Social entrepreneurs act as the change agents for society, seizing opportunities others miss to improve systems, invent new approaches, and create solutions to change society for the better. (Ashoka Foundation)

Social Entrepreneurship Scholars provides an opportunity for students to explore social impact careers, gain professional experience and develop as leaders.  Students complete a full-time internship with a Twin Cities non-profit, for-profit or public organization while participating in regular academic and vocational reflection with fellow students, faculty, community leaders and alumni.

A unique aspect of the program is the opportunity for participants to live together in a community setting, which fosters a spirit of support and mutuality. Students learn from each other’s experiences and perspectives through a weekly community meal, some structured reflection and ongoing informal conversation.

Program Details

  • Dates (tentative): June 3rd (move-in day) to August 4th (move-out after Noon)
  • Eligibility: Current Sophomore or Junior (Class of 2018 or 2019)
  • Housing: Large furnished apartment located at Macalester College (in the Macalester Stadium). The apartment includes a kitchen, lounge, single and double rooms on one floor, two bathrooms, and air conditioning.
  • Stipend: $2100 (approx. $200 of which will go towards a community grocery fund)
  • Applicants will have the opportunity to apply and interview for one or more of approximately 8-12 internship positions focused on social impact with nonprofit, for-profit or governmental organizations. Students who secure their own social impact internship will also be considered.
  • Learn about past participants
  • Sponsored by the Piper Center for Vocation & Career with funding from the Kloeck-Jenson Endowment for Peace & Justice.
  • How to Apply (see below)

Program Components

Gain valuable experience working 35 hours per week with a non-profit, public or for-profit organization that is pursuing a social mission or addressing community needs. Program directors will identify a wide range of potential internships related to research, public policy, marketing/communications, program development, community engagement, grant-writing and direct service.

Community Living
Live in a community house (or apartments) with 8-11 other students in a spirit of support and mutuality. Share in weekly community meals and conversations.

Seminars Meet with alumni and other community leaders, examine social and community issues and discuss internship experiences through three day-long seminars with St. Olaf faculty, staff, alumni and community leaders.

Academic Internship
Fulfill requirements for a 0.25-credit academic internship and connect theory and practice through written reflection, conversations with faculty supervisors and final poster/presentation.

Career Exploration & Vocational Discernment
Spend time exploring vocational questions and career interests through various aspects of the program through conversation and written reflection.

Compensation & Benefits

  •  $2100 stipend ($200 of which will go towards a community grocery fund)
  •  Free housing
  •  Tuition scholarship for 0.25-credit academic internship

Desired Qualifications

  • Maturity and leadership potential
  • Excellent interpersonal and communication skills
  • Interest in exploring a career or vocation related to social impact, community development, public policy, and/or environmental sustainability
  • Ability to make meaningful contributions in an internship settings (skills demonstrated through past internship, volunteer, leadership, research and/or academic experience)
  • Interest in and capacity for meaningful reflection and group discussion related to themes such as social change, leadership, and vocation

How to Apply

The application deadline is 10:00pm on February 24th. The deadline for the faculty recommendation form is February 26th.
  1. Ask a faculty member to complete the SES Faculty Recommendation Form
    After you have identified a faculty member to complete the recommendation form please send them the link for the form and request that they complete it by February 26th.
  2. Complete a Resume and SES Written Statement and apply through Handshake
    If you would like assistance with developing your resume, please stop by the Piper Center and meet with a Peer Advisor.
    Instructions for applying through Handshake:

    1. In Handshake, search and apply for the “Social Entrepreneurship Scholars – Summer 2017” under internships.
    2. Apply for the position.
    3. Upload your resume (one page) and completed written statement (saved as “other document”)
  3. Submit the SES Online Form
    Can save and edit at a later date. Includes prompts for the following information:
    – Faculty Recommender
    – Link for a Video Statement of Interest (short video that highlights your motivation to participate in SES)
    – Internship Preferences– rank your top four preferences based on SES internship options. Please note that it would be best to wait until February 17th to complete this part of the application to make sure most of the potential internship options have been added/updated.

A selection committee will evaluate the applications. Select applicants will have the opportunity to interview (most likely on March 1st or 2nd). Students will be notified of their status by March 10th.


If you have questions please attend one of the information sessions.  If you would like assistance with your resume or another another aspect please stop by the Piper Center (Tomson 270) and meet with a Peer Advisor. If you have a questions and are not able to attend an info sessions, please contact Nate Jacobi ( in the Piper Center for Vocation & Career.