Annenberg Alchemy Tech

About Alchemy Tech Nonprofit Tech Readiness Program

We are experiencing a new Los Angeles, one defined by extraordinary growth and a record number of start-up technology companies. The Annenberg Foundation is partnering with this growing tech sector to bring technology capacity-building to nonprofit organizations in the greater L.A. region through the Alchemy pilot program.

Since 2006, the Annenberg Foundation has provided capacity building and leadership training programs for nonprofit leaders from small to midsize nonprofit organizations through its Alchemy program. Over the past 10 years, Annenberg Alchemy has evolved to meet the needs of the nonprofit sector. Today, technology is transforming how we all live and work, and nonprofit leaders must understand how to effectively use technology to advance their mission. In realizing the size and scope of technology challenges facing nonprofit organizations, the Annenberg Foundation in partnership with NTEN offers this program focused exclusively on technology capacity building for nonprofits in the greater Los Angeles region.

Annenberg Alchemy Tech is a six-month, regionally based program for Alchemy Alumni who wish to strengthen their knowledge of technology best practices and move forward on a specific technology project that they identify through guidance and strategic feedback during the program.

Annenberg Alchemy Tech is open to Alchemy+ alumni organizations in the greater L.A. region who are interested in gaining practical and tangible technology training. The program is divided into two terms, with a mix of structured curriculum delivered by faculty, participant-driven content and workshops. Annenberg Alchemy Tech will be both online and in-person. The majority of the activity happens via regular online training sessions.

Term I

The first 10 weeks of the program provide participants with a foundational knowledge of technology and its role across the entire organization. Similar to other NTEN educational programs, Annenberg Alchemy Tech trainings focus on strategic processes, best practices and practical application rather than specific software. During Term I, participants will attend weekly online trainings, complete weekly homework assignments for review by faculty, and identify and submit a final technology project that they will be able to plan for and advance during Term II. Participants should anticipate 3-4 hours of program-related homework each week.

Term I topics include:

  • Leadership: Culture and Change Management
  • Technology Project Planning
  • Digital Strategy
  • Social Media
  • IT Planning
  • Data Management
  • Metrics and Evaluation
  • Campaigns

Term II

The content in Term II is driven by the needs of the cohort. The goal is to help participants move forward with the technology projects they identified during the first term. Participants will attend two in-person, full-day workshops and have access to ongoing online education and coaching. The time commitment will lessen to around 3-4 hours per month during the second term. The program will have a final gathering to mark the conclusion of the cohort.

Term II topics include:

  • Tech project planning
  • Pitching for tech support

Annenberg Alchemy Tech Calendar

March 13-15, 2019: Annenberg Alchemy Tech will participate at the Nonprofit Technology Conference in Portland, OR where participants will have full access to the 130+ educational sessions and dozens of networking events, as well as potential opportunities to present.

March 26, 2019: Program orientation via web conference to answer questions, check everyone’s online access and account settings, and provide detailed information about the 6-month calendar.

Apr 2, 2019 – Jun 11, 2019: Term I – weekly online programs on Tuesdays at 11 a.m.

July – September, 2019: Term II – two in-person, all-day workshop events and the culmination event. The specific dates for these workshops and the culmination event will be confirmed in the spring, with the expectation that one workshop takes place in both July and August, with the final gathering in September.

Time commitment

Annenberg Alchemy Tech is a six-month program. Participants should anticipate 3-4 hours of program-related work each week during the first 2.5 months and 3-4 hours per month during the last 3.5 months.

Cost

Annenberg Alchemy Tech is provided to participants free of charge. Travel and costs associated with the Nonprofit Technology Conference in Portland, OR March 13-15 are supported by the Annenberg Foundation as part of the program.

Who should apply

Annenberg Alchemy+ alumni organizations in the greater L.A. region who are interested in practical and tangible technology training. Participants should be staff responsible for advancement and implementation of a technology project at their organization. This may include an Executive Director, manager (IT, marketing, operations) or even a board member.

Frequently Asked Questions

Apply to Annenberg Alchemy Tech

Applications will open January 8, 2019.

FAQs

What is Annenberg Alchemy Tech?

Annenberg Alchemy Tech is a program developed in partnership with NTEN that is focused exclusively on technology capacity building for Alchemy+ alumni organizations in the greater L.A. region. Alchemy Tech, powered by NTEN, is for nonprofit organizations who wish to strengthen their knowledge of technology best practices and move forward on a specific technology project. The program is divided into two terms with a mix of structured curriculum delivered by Faculty as well as participant-driven content. Events and activities are both synchronous and asynchronous, online and in-person. The majority of the activity happens via regular online training events. Through this program, each participant will identify a technology challenge, project idea or technological need from their organization. They will benefit from six months of technology training, support, and feedback with a goal towards implementation.

What criteria determine eligibility and acceptance?

To be eligible for Alchemy Tech, your 501(c)(3) organization must be located in the greater L.A. region, be an alumni of Annenberg Alchemy+, have at least two full time staff, and complete the Alchemy Tech application. Additionally, you must be able to participate in all of the online courses and attend the NTC in Portland, OR March 13-15, 2019, the two in-person workshops in Los Angeles and the closing event.

Who is Annenberg Alchemy Tech best suited for? Who from my organization should participate?

Annenberg Alchemy+ alumni based in the greater Los Angeles region who are interested in practical and tangible technology training are good candidates. Participants should be staff responsible for advancement and implementation of a technology project at their organization. This may include an Executive Director, manager (IT, marketing, operations) or even a board member.

What kind of projects should I plan to work on?

Technology projects should not be designed around specific software. Projects should have a strategic and practical impact across the entire organization, and can include (but are not limited to): Leadership: Culture and Change Management, Digital Strategy, Social Media, IT Planning, Data Management, Metrics and Evaluation, and Fundraising Campaigns. If you have questions about a project you’d like to focus on during an Annenberg Alchemy Tech cohort, please contact NTEN’s Education Director, Ash Shepherd, at ash@nten.org.

What is the cost?

Alchemy Tech is provided to participants free of charge. Travel and costs associated with the Nonprofit Technology Conference in Portland, OR March 13-15, 2019 are supported by the Annenberg Foundation as part of the program.

Do I have to be an NTEN Member to participate?

No. Alchemy Tech is open to Alchemy+ alumni organizations in the greater L.A. region.

When does the program take place?

The six-month Annenberg Alchemy Tech cohort will start with participation in a program orientation on March 26, 2019. Term I, the 10-week technology management online course, will run April 2 – June 11, 2019 and Term II will run through September 2019, ending with a culmination event.

How is the program delivered?

Alchemy Tech is delivered through a mix of on and offline educational programs, trainings and workshops by NTEN faculty and tech partners in L.A. As a cohort, participants have a private online group for discussions and file sharing. Regular webinars, expert feedback sessions and regular group discussions will take place mostly online and by phone. In-person workshops will be planned to enhance and support learning.

How much time will this program take?

Alchemy Tech is a six-month program. During Term I (the first 10 weeks), participants can expect to spend 3-4 hours each week with educational programs online and homework materials. The remainder of the cohort period, Term II, is spent incubating, supporting and advancing projects, so much of the time commitment depends on the type of and depth of your project. We recommend expecting anywhere from 3-4 hours per month.

Is participation in the full six months required?

Yes. In order to ensure all participants and their organizations benefit from the program and are positioned for success, all participants are required to commit to the full six months. We recognize that there are naturally times during which participation may be limited by other priorities for your organization. The cohort is designed to accommodate for times when participants may be more or less available.

What happens after the six months?

We encourage Alchemy Tech “graduates” to share experiences, feedback and lessons learned with participants in future cohorts. We will also create opportunities for Annenberg Alchemy Tech graduates to have access to events, workshops, trainings and other opportunities to continue learning into the future.

What is the value of participating?

Participating in Alchemy Tech provides technology capacity building with the inclusion of the 10-week technology management course, as well as access to technology experts and service providers in L.A. and beyond. Annenberg Alchemy Tech connects participants with a rich network of peers, faculty members and potential collaborators. Completing Annenberg Alchemy Tech qualifies participants for discounted registration rates for future NTEN conferences.

How will this help my organization?

Alchemy Tech is designed so that participants can bring a technology challenge, project idea or need from their organization to the cohort and benefit from six months of support, feedback and training towards a solution.

Will my organization receive a grant for my participation in Annenberg Alchemy Tech?

At the end of the program, organizations will be eligible to apply for a capacity-building grant (up to $10,000) if all requirements of the program are fulfilled.

Does my enrollment in Annenberg Alchemy Tech improve my chances of receiving future grants from the Annenberg Foundation?

No. Alchemy Tech is not associated with the Annenberg Foundation’s grantmaking in any way. However, the goal is that your participation in Alchemy Tech training will improve the ability of your organization to compete for resources from many funding sources.

If you have questions about Annenberg Alchemy Tech, please contact NTEN’s Education Director, Ash Shepherd, at ash@nten.org.