The Jacobs Foundation is partnering with the Wharton Social Impact Initiative to help MBA students launch and expand ventures that respond to pressing societal challenges. The Jacobs Impact Entrepreneur Prize gives students a two-year runway – over the course of their MBA studies – to grow their social enterprise. The first year of Jacobs’ partnership with Wharton saw students Federico Mele and Umar Iqbal receive the first round of the JacobsPrize funding. The $5,000 prize gave each student the time and resources to scale their organizations while growing a powerful network of support.
The Jacobs Foundation invests in the future of young people so they become socially responsible and productive members of society. For Mele, the opportunity to become a Jacobs Fellow and spend six months at the Foundation’s headquarters allowed him to progress the goals of his education-focused Global Economic Awareness (GEA) Project, which guides underserved high school and college students in Asia and Africa through leadership development.
“I am a big supporter of our Wharton partnership program,” said Dr. Urs V. Arnold, the Jacobs Foundation’s head of operations. “We are a very entrepreneurial foundation. It is in our DNA.”
Jacobs’s founder, Klaus J. Jacobs, was known for forming global companies as well as being socially aware and philanthropically engaged throughout his life, with a particular focus on helping young people.
Sandi M. Hunt, managing director of the Wharton Social Impact Initiative, believes that through partnerships with organizations like the Jacobs Foundation, “Wharton’s MBA students who are looking at social challenges through a business lens will be a force for good—today and tomorrow.”