Incubator is the only wholly student run social enterprise pre-accelerator program in Australia.

Here at Monash SEED, we believe in the power of entrepreneurship to address the world’s great problems. Our vision is simple:

To create social impact and economic opportunity by enabling student-led social enterprise.

Think that your idea to achieve social impact has legs? We want to hear about it, and put rocket boots on it.


Join us for 10 weeks of weekend workshops, fireside chats and mentoring from incredible people from around Australia as we work together to make your dream a reality.


This will culminate in Pitch Night, set in the NAB Arena on the 3rd of October. You will pitch to an esteemed panel of impact investors, industry professionals and academics for a chance to win:

  • $1000 cash prize for you to use as you please
  • Personalised consulting sessions with our partner, The Difference Incubator
  • An exclusive, private networking dinner with Australia’s foremost social impact luminaries.


By the end, you would have:

Developed your Minimum Viable Product.

Concrete evidence of traction for your idea and a validated business model.

Developed the skill set and connections to turn any idea you have in the future into a reality.

Gained a deeper understanding of your impact area and the social impact sector of Australia as a whole.

Program Features

How does Incubator work?

Articulate and flesh out your vision for a better world. 6 teams will participate in 10 weeks of weekend workshops, fireside chats and real world pressure testing from 5 August – 3 October.

Be immersed in Monash University’s and Melbourne’s burgeoning startup ecosystem with:

  • Workshops held in co-working spaces throughout Melbourne.
  • Invitations to special events.

Be funded through our Incubator Matched Funding Scheme. Have your deposit matched 1:1 up to a cap of $200.

Gain access to Monash University’s co-working space: Innovation Alley and Fitzroy Academy accounts for the duration of the program.

Why Apply?

Become a part of Incubator

You’ll be informally introduced to some of the most inspiring people from around the social impact sphere in Australia.

You’ll gain the skills and network to be amazingly employable and turn any idea you have in the future, into a reality.

You’ll gain a deeper appreciation of the complexities surrounding your chosen impact area, and other issues as well.

You’ll take your idea, reiterate it, and build something that is wholly, truly yours.

Program Timeline

6 Teams. 3 Phases. 10 Weeks.

5 August -> 3 October


Week 1 – 4

Transform your vision or idea into a concrete business model through lean startup techniques developed in Silicon Valley. You’ll learn among other things: how to identify your customer, how to develop your value proposition and business model, and how to pitch


Week 5 – 10

Pressure test your business model in the real world.

Constantly test your assumptions and reiterate your ideas.

Launch your minimum viable product and get it out there.  


3rd October 2017

Pitch to an esteemed panel of impact investors, industry professionals and academics.

Important Dates

Applications Open: May 1

Applications Close: July 28 (11:59pm)

Notification of Successful Teams: August 1

First Workshop : August 5

Pitch Night: October 3

Selection Criteria

How your idea is going to be selected

The Problem

What is it and how are you addressing it?

We’re looking for an appreciation of the social issue at hand and how passionate you are about it. For example, through any personal experience and volunteering.

The Solution

How do you solve it?

We’ll be looking for a financially sustainable and scalable solution. It doesn’t have to be fully fleshed out, but we’d want you to have an idea of your options.

The Traction

How far along are you with your idea?

Have you tested some of your assumptions? Have you developed your idea or a prototype of it?

The Team

Who do you work with?

Does your team have a nice blend of skill sets? Are they all committed and on the same page? Will they all be available for the entirety of the program?

Incubator Matched Funding Scheme

We believe in your idea and are here to support you

In a nutshell, when you apply you’ll be asked to deposit an amount you’re comfortable with to develop your idea. We’ll match each and every cent of your deposit up to $200.


How it works:

At Induction Night, you’ll bring an envelope containing the amount you outlined in your application to invest in your idea (minimum $50).

In Week 4, the full value invested by you will be returned, for you to start the process of real world pressure testing your idea.

In Week 8, we’ll match your initial deposit, up to $200.

See Terms and Conditions for more detailed information. We won’t be assessing your application based on how much you pledge. It’s essentially the thought that counts. We’re here to provide the best platform possible for your idea to blossom.


Frequently Asked Questions

How much commitment is required?

  • Bare minimum would be to treat this as one of your units, but one you’ll enjoy!
  • On average, we estimate in a week, you’ll have 3 hours of workshops, occasional fireside chats and ~5 hours of market validation +  testing that you’ll do on your own time.
  • It’s a commitment, but trust in your vision, trust in what you’re passionate about the most, and we’ll guarantee you this will be a hugely fulfilling experience
  • Check out the program timeline for what you’ll be tackling

Is there a particular theme to be addressed?

  • Nope! Any social enterprise idea is acceptable (and encouraged!) so long as it aims to:
    • Empower communities either at Monash or beyond
    • Create positive impact
    • Advocate for social change
    • All the while being financially sustainable

Can I apply alone?

  • Sure! But we highly, highly recommend you find a co-founder (and choose wisely) to apply with. There will be days where you’ll be stressing out, and having a co-founder to be there as a sounding board and as support will be INVALUABLE.
  • It also adds an element of accountability for the milestones and goals you’ll set.

Is Incubator for me?

  • You enjoy challenges, problem solving and working on real world issues
  • You have an inspiring vision to share
  • You have a business idea but have no idea where to start
  • You are motivated and passionate about your idea
  • You are looking to meet other like minded students
  • You want to see how your degree can translate into a career and meet those on that trajectory or industry professionals

Terms and Conditions

How you can be a part of Incubator

Terms and Conditions

  1. Eligibility
    1. Open to any student currently studying (full/part-time) at an Australian university
    2. Idea must in some way address a social or environmental issue in Australia
    3. Ability to articulate your vision with evidence that some background research has been undertaken
    4. Full commitment and availability throughout the entire program (5 August – 3rd October).
    5. Willing to participate in our Matched Funding Scheme
  2. SEED Involvement
    1. SEED is responsible for organising and facilitating a safe, productive and effective Incubator Program
    2. SEED committee members will be present at all Incubator events (Workshops and Pitch Night)
    3. Teams will have a SEED contact member for the duration of the program who can be reached for general communication of both the Incubator program and SEED in general
    4. It is solely up to teams to come prepared for Workshops, however SEED will act as channel of communication between Workshop mentors and participants
    5. At the end of the Incubator Program, SEED will facilitate connection between the winning team and the prize institution/organisation
    6. After this, formal involvement from SEED in teams’ business plans will cease
    7. SEED may contact participating groups (particularly the winning team) for formal club reporting/administration and/or future publicity
    8. The Incubator Matched Funding Scheme (IMFS)
    9. The IMFS is a required part of the Incubator Program for 2017
    10. This is how it will operate:
    11. Teams will individually decide how much money they wish to invest into their idea
      • At the First Workshop (August 5), SEED (Treasury Department) will collect these funds in cash as a deposit. These funds will not be used by SEED for any other purpose
      • At the beginning of the Week 4 Workshop, deposits will be returned to teams in full which will be used in that session
      • In Workshop 8, returned deposit will be matched by funding from SEED                  
      • SEED will match team investments of up to $200 in value
      • All funds will belong to you and the matched investment value will not be owing to SEED
      • The status of the SEED matched investment is subject to satisfaction of the attendance requirements listed below (Section 4)
    12. The reason for IMFS is because we believe in your idea, and want to know that you do too. Ultimately, SEED is here to support you.
  3. Image Release
    1. During the course of the Incubator Program, SEED may take publicity photographs and/or video footage of participants
    2. This content may be used on on our social media accounts (Facebook and Instagram)  This content may also be used in our email newsletter the ‘SEED Feed’
    3. Accompanying media will be summary information given about groups – limited to names, business idea and caption relating to workshop material
    4. The purpose of this media is to to update the wider SEED community about the program and engage students in SEED’s activities (as well as celebrate your wins!)
    5. Said content may also be used by the Monash Entrepreneurs Club as part of a SEED MEC partnership
    6. Teams can notify SEED officers if they wish to have certain information or images withheld.
  4. Attendance
    1. It is expected that at least one team member will be present at every workshop
    2. It is expected that all teams will be present and present at the final Pitch Night
    3. If an individual member is unable to attend, notification must be sent to corresponding SEED contact member
    4. If (above) attendance minimum is not met, you may become ineligible for receiving SEED matching investment money. You will still be entitled to the initial team self-invested amount.
    5. The Incubator Program is largely dependent on participant input – the more you put in the more you will get out of it!
    6. This may mean that you are expected to prepare and conduct activities outside of workshop time
  5. Release from Liability
    1. SEED will not be liable for any loss team members suffer by participating in the program. As a condition of participating in the program, team members release SEED from all liability.

Sponsors and Partners

Our key partners for Incubator 2017

For more than 150 years, we’ve been helping our customers with their money. Today, we have more than 35,000 people serving 10 million customers at more than 800 locations in Australia, New Zealand and around the world. We have built our business on understanding our customers and supporting them. We aim to take the hard work out of banking. As Australia’s largest business bank, we work with small, medium and large businesses to help them start, run and grow. We fund some of the most important infrastructure in our communities – including schools, hospitals and roads. And we do it in a way that’s responsible, inclusive and innovative.

At TDi, we fundamentally believe that if you’re passionate about seeing change in the world, building businesses where social and financial returns are aligned is the best way to achieve it. Through our method we seek to build better businesses with alternative, sustainable revenue streams, ultimately helping us crack entrenched social and environmental challenges.

WE TRAIN YOU TO THINK AND WORK LIKE AN ENTREPRENEUR SO YOU CAN AFFECT MASSIVE IMPACT IN WHATEVER YOU DO. We run a comprehensive suite of events and programs to inspire, up-skill, connect and accelerate your learning journey. All our events are open to staff, students and alumni of Monash University. We embrace diversity as strength and welcome interest from members from the broader community.