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Clinton Global Initiative University



The deadline for CGI U is Monday, November 4, 2019

Note: CGI U is offering limited travel assistance scholarships for commitments aligned with very narrow Clinton Foundation focus areas (see description below*). Students who wish to compete for travel scholarships, must apply early, by Monday, September 30 – please consult with your iCED office if you want to apply early for guidance.

President Clinton and Chelsea Clinton will host the 10th annual CGI U meeting in Edinburgh Scotland April 17-19, 2020. 

MDC students who apply and are accepted will:

  • Be eligible to apply for seed funding from MDC to support their commitment idea ($5000 allocated for seed funding)
  • Participate in the CGI U curriculum (four on-line modules between December 2019 and November 2020 covering how to ideate, design, implement, and evaluate a social impact project)
  • Be assigned a mentor from CGI U's alumni leadership network
  • Be invited to student and alumni events
  • Secure access to apply for funding via CGI U partner organizations
  • Access expertise from the Clinton Foundation
  • Participate virtually in the CGI U Scotland meeting (MDC students will not travel to Scotland due to cost constraints, however arrangements will be made to view sessions virtually – MDC students are still considered full participants in CGI U)

To be accepted you must develop a Commitment to Action. Commitments to Action are new, specific, and measurable initiatives that address pressing challenges on campus, in local communities, or around the world.
To be considered for admission, applicants are required to make a Commitment to Action in one of CGI U's five focus areas: Education, Environment and Climate Change, Peace and Human Rights, Poverty Alleviation, and Public Health. Applications from groups (up to three members of a group can be part of the application) and individuals are accepted.
MDC is proud to be a member of the Clinton Global Initiative University Network, meaning that we provide support and mentorship to students who wish to apply to CGI U. Students selected for CGI U will receive on-going support and can apply for seed funding from MDC for their commitment.

To apply, follow these steps

  • Visit to learn more about CGI U, to develop your commitment, and to review the process to apply.
  • Become inspired by watching this 3-minute video found in the tab on the right (Video About CGI U).
  • Watch this "Prospective Student Webinar" that prepares you to apply.
  • Download the CGI U application – tab on right (CGI U Application); draft it in Word, review it with iCED, your professor, your advisor/mentor, and submit it by the deadline (9/30/19 for travel assistance*, 11/4 for regular submission).
  • Stay in touch with your campus' iCED office so they know you are applying and so they can guide you.
  • Find an advisor! This person could be a professor, a local nonprofit leader, an advocate, or an expert in a field related to your commitment. With their help, figure out exactly what you need to do to make the biggest impact possible. They can help you develop your Commitment to Action and help you put your plan into action after the CGI U event. If you are having trouble finding an advisor, iCED may be able to find a local nonprofit that works in your area of interest.
  • Think about your budgeting needs. The lower the cost of your commitment, the more likely it is that it will be achievable. Ideally, you should be able to create your commitment with no funding, or just a small amount of funding. If your commitment is going to require funds, make sure you have a fundraising plan in mind (remember that you can use websites such as IOBY –, or kickstarter
  • MDC will be allocating funding of up to $5,000 to MDC student commitments via a competitive process after CGI U in May 2020. Typically the range of seed funding will be $200 to $1,000, depending on the number of applicants and the needs of the projects. CGI U itself also awards some funding. However, these are very competitive as you will be applying for seed funding in competition with all the applicants, not just the students from MDC.

Key Steps:

  • Talk to your iCED representative on your campus – see list below (
  • Write up your draft commitment and review it with your advisor/iCED.
  • Review and finalize your commitment and submit it via the CGI U website by November 4th –

Need more help perfecting your idea?

The Idea Center serves as a hub for innovation and entrepreneurship at MDC.  The Idea Center produces and hosts a wide variety of programs to help students build their ideas (browse all programs at  Sign up for a free 30-minute consultation with the IDEA Center (in person or via SKYPE) about your commitment to Action ideas here:

Travel Assistance

To be considered for travel assistance from CGI U to the annual meeting, financial need must be demonstrated and priority will be given to commitments that readily align with the work of the Clinton Foundation. Learn more about the work of the Clinton Development Initiative (resilient island nations – focusing on sustainable development and clean energy), the Clinton Climate Initiative (agriculture and economic empowerment in East Africa), and the Clinton Health Matters Initiative (opioid epidemic and substance abuse) if you are interested in this opportunity. You must apply by 9/30 to be considered for travel assistance.
iCED Contact Information:

        ICED Contact Information

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