BillionRoots One Year Fellowship is a social entrepreneurship and design thinking full academic year of experience, designed to support the growth of the whole person. We encourage each student to think and dream big.

The BillionRoots Fellowship includes:

  • Eight weeks of group international travel.
  • A two month immersion into the startup community in Chicago including an internship with affiliated start-up companies.
  • Three months of directed launch of your startup with work space at Coalition Impact.
  • Experiential college curriculum of social entrepreneurship learning fully accredited through an affiliated university.
  • Formal social entrepreneurship internship with Lollapalooza.


Travel during BillionRoots Fellowship

BillionRoots Fellowship is filled with many opportunities for travel and adventure. The year kicks off with group international travel where a small cohort of students, along with experienced leaders, spends 4 weeks creating social innovations through design thinking to solve the world’s biggest and most audacious problems.

The second semester holds a two month internship and three month launch of your social enterprise, with mentoring, coaching, and access to experts in the field.


  • New Fellow Orientation Day
  • 9 Days of Group Retreat
  • 6 Weeks of 2112 Incubator Social Entrepreneurship Immersion
  • 4 Weeks of Group Travel (Design Thinking Immersion)
  • 2 Week Break – Home Trips (Reflection and 360 degree feedback)
  • 6 Weeks of 1871 Incubator Social Entrepreneurship Immersion
  • 8 Weeks of Individual Social Entrepreneurship Internship
  • 4 Weeks of Group Travel (Global Social Entrepreneurship Immersion)
  • 12 Weeks of Coalition Impact Social Entrepreneurship Project Start-Up
  • 4 Days of Lollapalooza Impact Internship (impact and sustainability)
  • 3 Days of Group Retreat
  • Closing Session and Graduation


BillionRoots Fellowship Retreats

At BillionRoots we believe that the journey of self-discovery and social entrepreneurship are one.

This inner journey is facilitated through four retreats.

During a retreat, students put aside their digital media (phones, computers, headphones, etc.) to minimize distraction and virtual engagement, and focus on hearing their unique and guiding inner voice as well as connecting with their peers in a new and profound way.

These retreats, ranging in length from three to nine days, form the backbone of the BillionRoots Fellowship program. They bracket three distinctive journeys:

  • Group Travel
  • Going Home after Group Travel
  • Individual Internship

Retreats are designed to provide pre-departure support for the travel periods, as well as to provide a home base for post trip reflection on the experiences and lessons of each adventure. Each day is packed with engaged, experiential workshops and activities to help support students in getting the most out of their BillionRoots Fellowship.

The daily schedule for each retreat includes three to five hours of workshops and discussion in our studio, one hour of a physical discipline (such as yoga, meditation, or dance), four hours of outdoor work or cooking and baking in our community kitchen, and some free time to swim in the creek, hike, make music, or tackle a creative project.