About the Fellowship

Applications for the 2018-2019 Fellowship are now closed. Thank you to all who applied!

University Innovation Fellowship

The Office of University Initiatives (UI) Fellowship in University Innovation is a 13-month program at ASU designed to engage talented early- and mid-career professionals from across the nation in big ideas and real program building processes.

During the fellowship, fellows leverage the principles of Design Thinking to advance the New American University model. By contributing a diversity of perspectives to ideation processes, strategic decision-making and project advancement, fellows play a crucial role in promoting innovation within higher education.


ASU as a New American University

ASU President, Dr. Michael Crow asked, “Do you replicate what exists, or do you design what you really need?” For the last decade, ASU has been re-designing an institution for the demands of the 21st century. We have set out to lead the revolution in U.S. higher education by putting forth a model for a New American University, focused on excellence, access and impact in everything it does; measured not by who we exclude, but rather by who we include and how they succeed; engaged in research for the public good; and designed for the social, economic, and cultural vitality of the surrounding communities.

Newsweek recognized these efforts as “one of the most radical redesigns in higher learning.” In fall 2016, U.S News and World Report recognized ASU as the #1 most innovative institution in the country for the second straight year. Come help us continue to transform the higher education landscape.

ASU Charter Video

What Fellows Do

With the support of a top-ranked institution, UI alumni and a high-achieving network of peers, fellows develop enhanced skills in the areas of research, grant and proposal writing, collaboration, ideation, project development and launch. When fellows start, they may develop an idea from the beginning or take on a more advanced project. Regardless of a fellow’s point of entry, fellows serve as intrapreneurs, researchers, consultants and project managers who may simultaneously design program models, manage partnerships and build and market new initiatives linked to institutional and societal change.

At UI, fellows have the opportunity to…

Collaborate within an office, an institution and a community primed for changeFellows balance independent and team-oriented assignments

Influence decisions through calculated researchAlthough innovation requires risk, fellows utilize unique perspectives, critical thinking and analytical exploration to iterate and push forward research and industry-backed proposals

Transform ideas into actionable movements of innovationFellows scan for opportunities, create strategic plans, write grants and identify potential funders  to create actionable, successful initiatives that serve as demonstration projects for the New American University model

Connect with a powerful networkFellows collaborate with influential changemakers in higher education and the community, including a growing base of University Innovation Fellow alumni

Discover high impact career pathwaysUI’s culture supports the personal and professional growth of fellows as they launch careers based on transformative thinking about higher education systems and projects