Why the Ambition Accelerator?

A motivated young person with a good idea can change the world, and when a young person realizes their power as a changemaker, the resulting ripple effect can change mindsets and even institutions. Our goal is to inspire a society that recognizes the power of everyone to make change and transform the world for the better.

Through the Taco Bell Foundation Ambition Accelerator, we aim to power the bold ambitions of the next generation as they disrupt broken systems and pursue positive change, supporting and championing young innovators to be the leaders of today. 

Ambition Accelerator Events

We are here to help! Join us for information and support sessions to learn about the program, prizes & benefits, eligibility, and evaluation criteria as well as get your questions answered. 

Prizes and Benefits for Young Innovators:

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6 Early Entry Prizes

Taco Bell and Ashoka will select six outstanding teams from all eligible applicants that apply by June 1, 2022, for a cash prize of $500. Additionally, all entries submitted by the early entry deadline will receive feedback to improve their application before the final deadline of July 21, 2022.

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220 Quarter Finalists

226 young innovators will receive a $500 cash prize as an investment in their idea to positively change their communities. This is also an opportunity to receive additional feedback on their projects from Ashoka Staff and Taco Bell employees.  

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25 Semi-Finalists

25 teams will receive $1,000 Cash Prize and will have the opportunity to participate in the Taco Bell Ambition Accelerator Summit, featuring skills-building workshops and networking events, fostering connections with young changemakers from across the United States and its territories. 

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4 Finalists

In addition to attending the Taco Bell Ambition Accelerator Summit, 4 teams will receive a $10,000 additional cash prize and formal recognition of their contributions to the broader movement on the Taco Bell Foundation Ambition Accelerator website and social media platforms. 

 

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1 Grand Finalist

In addition to attending the Taco Bell Ambition Accelerator Summit, one team will receive a $25,000 additional Grand Prize and formal recognition of their contributions to the broader movement on the Taco Bell Foundation Ambition Accelerator website and social media platforms.

Ambition Accelerator Timeline

May 3, 2022
Launch Day!
Apply Online

By applying to the Ambition Accelerator, this is the chance to grow your changemaking abilities, access funding, receive feedback on your project, discover a community of like-minded young people, and more! 

June 1, 2022
Early Entry Deadline
Apply Online

Ambition Accelerator Early Entry Prize: Taco Bell and Ashoka will select 6 outstanding teams from those that apply by June 1, 2022 (11:59 PM EST), for a cash prize of $500.

Additionally, all entries submitted by the early entry deadline will receive feedback to improve their application before the final deadline of July 21, 2022 (11:59 PM EST).  Applicants who meet the eligibility requirements will be considered for an early entry award if they apply by the early entry deadline.

July 21, 2022
Application Deadline
Apply Online

From now to July 21st, applicants will get the chance to submit their ideas, receive feedback on their projects, learn new tools for making social impact, and network with other youth applicants.

  • 25 selected teams will win a trip to participate at the Summit, to be hosted from November 3 to November 6 at Taco Bell Headquarters.
  • Five teams will have the opportunity to pitch their project idea, and four of these teams will receive $10,000.
  • One winning team will receive a grand prize of $25,000 in funding.  
July & August 2022
Review Period
Online

Expert reviewers from Ashoka and Taco Bell will offer feedback on all submitted ideas to support every applicant in their changemaker journey.

TBD
Winners Annoucement
Online

We will announce the 226 young innovators who will be awarded funding for their ideas and the 25 teams who will be invited to Taco Bell Headquarters for the Amibiton Accelerator Summit.

November 3-6, 2022
Ambition Accelerator Summit
Irvine, California

Paid Participation in the Taco Bell Ambition Accelerator Summit* featuring skills-building workshops and networking events, fostering connections with young changemakers from across the United States and its territories.

*Subject to change based on CDC COVID-19 safety recommendations

Get Inspired to Apply!

Check out the story below of Manat, founder of Object, who has worked from a young age to build confidence in girls to pursue their passions. Or read about sister duo Mena and Zena, co-founders of “Girls of the Crescent,” who are working to make literature more representative by uplifting the stories of Muslim women.   

Manat: Building confidence through storytelling

Finding the confidence in herself at the age of 12, Manat started a social venture, Object, to promote confidence in young girls.
Read more

Uplifting stories of Muslim Women: Mena and Zena’s journey to changemaking

How sisters Mena and Zena are making literature more inclusive by writing, normalizing, and uplifting the diverse stories of Muslim women.
Read more