Applications are now being accepted for the next round of participants in the Filene Research Institute’s i3 innovation program, which aims to spark creativity and new ideas in financial services.

The two-year curriculum is open to credit union employees with “a demonstrated track record of creativity, and a desire and ability to influence change.” Credit union employees at all levels below CEO may apply, though Filene noted that the candidates most frequently accepted come from management or the executive level.

“Filene i3’ers drive innovation and create solutions that improve the ways credit unions bring financial services to our communities,” Ryan Foss, managing director of innovation at Filene, said in a statement. “The participants gain new skills and bring a renewed energy and enthusiasm to their credit union as a result of their experience in i3.”

Since the program’s launch, more than 200 concepts have been developed to help consumers save money, help credit unions increase efficiencies and even change laws. Successful concepts developed within the program are advanced to the next level for prototyping and further testing.

“The i3 experience, among many other things, leaves a person forever inspired by the possibilities for innovation and growth,” said David Snodgrass a former i3’er and CEO of Lake Trust Credit Union. “That is tremendously valuable to our organization as we try to transform ourselves so as to be relevant now and in the future. Everything is difficult to the unwilling…in our i3’ers we not only have a willingness to innovate and change, we have a hunger to do so.”

Applications are available online until May 31. Forty applicants will be selected to be paired with alumni and challenged to develop and pitch a solution to a particular challenge. After that six-week period, 15 finalists will be selected for the program.

More information is available at