mPOWER programs are designed to rebalance opportunity and access for startups building physical products that are founded by women and people of color. Harnessing the existing resources of the nation’s leading independent innovation center for physical product companies, each participant receives hands-on support to turn ideas into hardtech businesses.
mPOWER Program Eligibility & Benefits
There is no fee to participate in the program as membership is covered by program partners. To be eligible for the next mPOWER cohort, you must be a Black innovator and/or founder, have a clear problem that you are trying to solve through a physical product, and be able to dedicate 7-10 hours a week during the 6-month program beginning in August. The current application deadline is Sunday, July 9, 2023.
The application period for other cohorts, including mPOWER Women Founders, is rolling.
If accepted into the program, you will receive:
- Sponsored 6-month membership at mHUB’s world-class innovation center with Shared Workspace membership benefits
- A Lifetime Membership to National Society of Black Engineers Chicago Professionals
- A monthly stipend to participate in the program
- Access to a $5,000 microgrant to cover startup business and/or product development costs
- Structured, hands-on programming for building a business and product at its earliest stages
- Brainstorming sessions for the design and development of your physical product
- Access to $6 million worth of prototyping equipment
- Training sessions and 1-1 support for prototyping
- Dedicated support from a network of industry-leading mentors, mHUB staff, and founders
- Networking opportunities
- Monthly speaker series to hear from Black entrepreneurs
- Exclusive access to National Society of Black Engineers mHUB Engineer in Residence