About the Virtual Exploring Social Innovation (ESI) Program
Since 2010, VIA has hosted more than 350 university students and young professionals from across the world in Silicon Valley for the ESI Program. Participants learn about social innovation, meet entrepreneurs, make international friends, and reflect on their personal and professional goals. The program has shifted to a virtual format during the coronavirus pandemic, but this is also an opportunity to explore innovative possibilities for a virtual ESI.
Our objectives for the virtual ESI program are:
- To design and implement a program where the virtual format is a plus, not a minus
- To leverage all the communities and cultures shared within the program, rather than focusing exclusively on Silicon Valley
- To deliver an authentic VIA experience for participants that focuses on building community, peer learning, self-reflection, and personal and professional growth
Our Vision for the Social Innovation Education Fellows’ Role
VIA aspires to support and enable social innovation educators to prepare the next generation of creative and effective innovators working towards a more fair and flourishing world. The Fellows will assist in recruiting participants from their home communities, be a primary contact for participants from their region, be a leader and mentor during the Exploring Social Innovation program, and maintain connections with VIA alumni. This position is an opportunity for VIA alumni to develop professional recruitment, leadership, changemaker training, presentation, and virtual facilitation skills through program orientation and implementation. Fellows will provide support to participants in learning key concepts, and developing a community before, during, and after the program. Fellows will receive training on facilitation skills as well as feedback to help them improve their own training ability.
- Before the program (October 2021 – January 2022)
- Participate in team-building, training, and program planning sessions with the program director and other fellows
- Support participant recruitment by joining information sessions and sharing information with personal networks
- Plan program activities, including energizers, presentations, and workshops
- During the program (February 8-16, 2022)
- Observe participants and collect feedback through discussions and reflection sessions
- Lead or co-lead energizers, workshops, and small group discussions
- Provide support for participants; serve as the primary facilitator for teams (4-5 participants per team)
- Act as a bridge between VIA staff and participants
- Document and post-program activities and experiences (photos, videos, social media)
- Participate in daily facilitation team reflection, feedback, and planning sessions
- After the program (Mid- to Late February 2022)
- Help improve the design of some workshops and the whole program through post-program reflection and feedback
- Connect ESI participants with the VIA alumni community in your region
A strong fellowship candidate has:
- Strong organizational skills; ability to work independently and in a team
- Ability to serve as an effective bridge between program participants and VIA staff during the program
- Experience with past VIA programs and dedication to program goals
- An interest in training and supporting future changemakers
- Strong interest and/or experience working with social issues and/or social entrepreneurship in Asia
- Experience or strong interest in design thinking
- Experience or strong interest in designing and facilitating virtual programs
- Comfortable discussing complex issues in English; willing to promote the use of English during the program
- Experience with event planning and promotion, especially through social media
- Experience with digital engagement tools such as Zoom
Location: This is a 100% remote position that can be done from anywhere in the world as long as you can be available during preparation and program activities, have a good internet connection, and are able to use the US version of Zoom.
- Fellowship Application Period
- October 4 (Asia Time) – Application deadline (if you submit your application before the deadline, you may be invited to an interview earlier).
- October 5-9 (Asia Time) – Online interviews with Anissa Monteon, Program Director.
- October 12 – Successful applicants will be notified of their acceptance to the position no later than this date.
- October 18 – Deadline to accept fellowship and confirm participation.
- Participant Recruitment & Program Preparation
- Late October – Orientation meeting for team-building and participant recruitment.
- Starting from Early November – Weekly or biweekly meetings for program planning, facilitator training, and participant recruitment updates.
- November 13 (Asia Time) – ESI Info Session 1
- November 15 (Asia Time) – Participant Application Deadline (Round 1)
- December 4 (Asia Time) – ESI Alumni Panel Discussion
- December 13 (Asia Time) – Participant Application Deadline (Round 2)
- Program Implementation & Follow-Up
- January – Program planning and pre-program participant support
- January 29, 2022 (Asia Time) – Pre-Program Orientation (date tentative)
- February 8-16, 2022 (Asia Time) – ESI Program (dates tentative)
- Late February – Post-program reflection and wrap-up
In addition to training and gaining hands-on experience facilitating virtual programs, fellows will receive an official letter of recognition upon successful completion of the fellowship. We are also happy to provide letters of recommendation based on your performance as a Social Innovation Education Fellow.