My Experience With ChangeMakers Institute

After 3 years of internships in corporate finance and information systems, I went into my senior year of college with a cloud of uncertainty looming over my head. While I had enjoyed and certainly learned from my previous internships, I knew that I wanted more. However, I had no idea exactly what I wanted, an idea that was both freeing yet terrifying. As a student in Management and Economics, I was taking several classes in the fall related to entrepreneurship and the environment. One of these classes required me to brainstorm and pitch an innovative idea with a social benefit to the environment and thus FoodChain was born. Throughout my studies on a micro and macroeconomic level, I consistently saw inefficiencies and problems permeating throughout our modern food chain. Even more so, I was astounded as to the volume of activity that goes into feeding our country, a process I had never really thought about despite being a part of it every day. I began to dive deeply into these processes, hoping to untangle the web of problems and understand the intricacies involved. A few days after, I saw an email about the ChangeMakers Institute, Tulane’s accelerator program for ventures with social benefit. Despite the deadline being only days away, I compiled everything I could and applied. My application was extremely raw and lacked precision, yet when meeting with Julia and Dustin for the interview, they decided to take a chance on us and help us develop our idea. Over the next few months we continued to immerse ourselves in the world of food and business development under the guidance of CI and our mentors. This guidance has proved crucial in getting us to where we are today, providing us with a community of intelligent and involved mentors and peers to help us navigate the extremely difficult process of developing a venture. CI was instrumental in learning about the logistics of business development, providing us with a number of invaluable connections, and also helping me write the grant proposal that resulted in us being awarded this grant. I am now in Madison, WI with the hopes to launch FoodChain this fall. Thank you for everything CI!