The Failure Fund is a grant competition that awards Davidson students with between $150-1000 to pursue a creative or innovative idea. The purpose of this scholarship is to fund the creative ideas of Davidson students while empowering them to model the traits of innovators and creative entrepreneurs, mainly by being comfortable with failure.
Why call it the failure fund?
Because we encourage you to fail! Failing is a part of the creative process. And really unless you are a demigod (which you probably aren’t, sorry), your first stab(s) at a creative or innovative idea will fail. Remember that trope about Thomas Edison failing hundreds of times before he created the light bulb? Yeah, we want that to be you.
Likely you apply to this grant to do something that you’ve never done before. You’re going to make mistakes. And it’s not that we expect you to crash and burn, but we do expect you to be unafraid of experimentation. We want students to take risks, try new ideas, learn how to quickly recognize what doesn’t work and pivot onto something that does.
Qualifying for the Fund
We fund for-profit ventures. That means your project must make money by selling a product, idea, or service.
Applying to the fund
We accept applications on a rolling basis on a first come first serve basis.
What types of projects win? There isn’t one type of project that we are looking for, but we are looking for something creative. Take a responsible risk. Make something sustainable. Be passionate.
Upon accepting the award, students must consent to make substantial progress towards their goal within 7 weeks, attend an orientation meeting, have regular check-ins, document and reflect upon their creative process, and give an on-campus presentation on what they learned from the process.