Eligible applicants for NC IDEA ENGAGE would include:

  • Non-profit or for-profit entrepreneur support organizations
  • Local governments, colleges and universities
  • Capital providers such as seed stage funds and angel groups
  • Service providers that support entrepreneurs
  • Individuals, entrepreneurs and/or their companies

Eligible activities will promote entrepreneurship as the primary goal and may include, but are not limited to:

  • Requests for event sponsorship, including virtual events
  • Funding to support pilot programs or new initiatives that are focused on and centered around entrepreneurship
  • Educational programming on a variety of topics focusing on entrepreneurship or ecosystem building
  • Networking, mentoring, advising and match-making activities or events
  • Organization or community-wide implementation of Ice House Entrepreneurship Program. *Applications will be accepted from trained facilitators only*
  • Entrepreneurship competitions, Demo Days, Hackathons, Startup Weekends, etc.
  • Events organized on a specific entrepreneurship theme or target demographic
  • Entrepreneurial activities or programming in underserved areas, such as Tier 1 and Tier 2 counties.

NC IDEA ENGAGE does NOT fund the following:

  • Business grants. Companies seeking funding for business operations should consider our MICRO and SEED grant programs
  • Long-term engagements (NC IDEA ENGAGE grants serve to get your program or event off the ground, but due to limited budget, you cannot expect ongoing funding)
  • Funding for equipment or overhead costs
  • Sponsorship for events that have been ongoing for more than 3 years
  • Proposals that do not align with NC IDEA’s mission

Generally speaking, funding will range between $1K – $5K, with select activities being invited to propose larger programs requiring greater resources. Qualifying requests need to be submitted no less than 60 days prior to the proposed activity. 

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