2014 Social Innovator of the Year

UNH Social Innovation and enterprise. Paul College

The Social Innovator of the Year Award recognizes a New England leader with a demonstrated commitment to social innovation.  Social innovators combine the passion and purpose of a social or environmental mission, with the rigor and accountability of a financially sustainable, scalable model for change. Eric Schwarz, founding CEO of Citizen Schools and executive chairman of US2020, received the 2014 Award at the NH Social Venture Innovation Challenge on Monday, Dec. 15, 2014.


UNH is proud to be working with Eric Schwarz, the University of New Hampshire's 2014 Social Innovator of the Year, as a founding partner with the College for Social Innovation, Eric’s new social enterprise to prepare college students for high-impact careers in social entrepreneurship and public service. Learn more about the Semester in the City Program.

Eric Schwarz is the co-founder of Citizen Schools, a leading national force in educational innovation, and the author of the recently published book, The Opportunity Equation.  Schwarz founded Citizen Schools in Boston in 1995 to support a vision of offering students in low-income communities a longer learning day, including hands-on “apprenticeships” led by volunteer “Citizen Teachers” from local businesses and universities.  Now in seven states, Citizen Schools partners with public middle schools to expand the learning day for children through academic mentoring and skill-building apprenticeships. Over half of the skill-building apprenticeships are focused on STEM subjects and activities. Learn more about Citizen Schools and US2020, a national mentoring initiative whose goal is to match 1 million STEM mentors with students by the year 2020.

The University of New Hampshire is honored to recognize Eric Schwarz for his role in shifting the opportunity equation in our country. By growing Citizen Schools and using its successes to impact education policy, Eric has not only helped local children ‘beat the odds’ in educational attainment, he has ‘changed the odds’ for all American children.