Nexus Cooperative Development Fellowship


For the last several years, we have been supporting efforts to elevate local and broad-based ownership as a means to build community wealth. Nexus is particularly interested in cooperative ownership. What we know is that cooperation and cooperative economics have been practiced in cultural communities for hundreds of years. We also know that there are cooperative business models currently being used with great success. One example of this includes converting privately-held businesses to worker ownership.

To ensure these opportunities take root in Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC) communities, Nexus is implementing a Cooperative Development Fellowship. Our goal is to build a network of BIPOC practitioners that work to create a robust cooperative sector.

What is it and who should apply:

The seven-month program is targeted at individuals/consultants who would like to become cooperative developers, organizations wanting to add cooperative development to their services or incubate a cooperative, and other professionals (e.g. lawyers, capital providers) who are interested in supporting cooperative development. We are also interested in recruiting applicants who will focus on assisting business owners and their employees who want to convert to worker ownership. At this time, the fellowship is only available for people that live or work in the Twin Cities Metro Area. 

Please note that the Fellowship is not designed for individuals wanting to start their own cooperative.

The Fellowship includes the following:

  • Opening Retreat
  • 3 intensive, in-person trainings
  • Online training modules
  • Group webinars with national cooperative practitioners
  • Local Site Visit
  • National Site Visit
  • Project design and presentations
  • Coaching and support from Nexus and DAWI
  • Closing Celebration

All training, coaching and off-site travel expenses will be covered by Nexus.

The Fellowship requires a time commitment of 75-85 hours over the course of seven months, with participation in all program activities mandatory.

We are able to offer a $500 stipend, half up front, half when they successfully complete. A timeline for the program can be found in the application below.

Applications are due March 6, 2019.  Please visit this link for our online application.

Information Sessions

Before you complete the application, we request that you attend one of our information sessions. You’ll get the chance to learn more about the Fellowship program and ask questions. In the event you are unable to attend, we will schedule a short one-on-one phone call. Please contact Nkuli Shongwe at to confirm your participation in one of these sessions or to schedule a one-on-one phone call. 

Information sessions will be held on Thursday, February 7th from 10:00-11:30 am and Monday, February 11th from 6:00-7:30 PM.  Both info sessions will be held at the Nexus office, 2314 University Ave W., Suite 18, St. Paul, MN 55114.

Important Dates

  • March 6: Application Deadline
  • March 11-19: Interviews
  • March 22: Announcement of Fellows Selection
  • April 4th: Opening Gathering
  • April 18: Webinar
  • April 29: In-person training
  • May 21: Webinar
  • June 17: Webinar
  • Week of July 8th: National site visit and training
  • August 15: Webinar
  • September 26: Webinar
  • October 17: In-person training/presentations
  • November (TBD): Closing Retreat