The Innovation Hack

A hands-on, future-focused innovation programme built for Gen Z

We are reimagining how to build innovation mindsets and skillsets in Gen Z New Zealanders. We want to help rethink how business can be done in the near and far future, and help tackle the skill shortage in Wellington and Aotearoa.

The Innovation Hack is a practical programme, that teaches you and other participants aged 17–25 to use and implement future-focused innovation tools that employers want.

The programme runs for 15 weeks, with sessions built to work around your school, university or work schedule.

Key dates

29 May Applications open

31 Jul Applications close at 8pm

02 Aug Participants notified

24 Aug Programme starts

(Read the full schedule here)

30 Nov Programme ends

​​“We’re basically learning all these incredible things, that we never learned in school.

Mikayla Stokes
Young Founder

About the programme

We’ve asked businesses in Te Whanganui-a-Tara, Wellington, to bring us some of the key problems they are facing right now. Now it’s your turn to find a solution. If you are selected, you’ll join a team of innovators aged 17–25 years old, working to solve different challenges with Creative HQ’s innovation toolkit.

You’ll learn practical and relevant skills that you can transfer to any job. We’ll introduce you to the concepts of Agile, Lean and Design thinking and show you how you can apply the theory to real-world opportunities. 

Organisations around the world are increasingly using innovation tools to understand unmet customer needs and deliver better outcomes. The likes of Apple, Coca-Cola and Tesla – all credit their success to their innovation and design-led approach.

Applications have now closed.

What you get

If you are wondering if this is the right programme for you, here are three reasons why you should apply now.

Learn transferable skills

Set yourself up for success. You’ll learn transferable skills that can help you get your first or next job. We’ll introduce you to concepts like Agile, Lean, design thinking and some key innovation tools used by top companies around the world.

Make an impact

Build relationships with Wellington organisations, while helping them solve real problems with meaningful impactStrengthen your problem-solving skills through action-based learning.

Be awarded the Certificate in Applied Innovation

At the end of the programme, you’ll receive Creative HQ’s Certificate in Applied Innovation. Plus, we’ll show you how to translate the skills you learn into your CV and interview soundbites.

Two young women at the Innovation hack


We tried to answer all your questions below. If you have a specific query get in touch.

Who can apply?

Anyone aged 17–25  who wants to get real-world experience that they can apply in any role going forward. If you have an open mind, a curious nature and a desire to learn about how to apply a new and exciting set of tools – then this programme is for you.

Get practical experience on your CV, learn with a diverse and creative cohort and engage with some of the most exciting organisations here in Wellington.

What’s the time commitment?

Successful applicants will be invited to complete the programme at Creative HQ’s office in Wellington for 15 weeks, starting 24th August. You can find the full schedule here.

What does it cost to participate in the programme?

This programme is free for all participants. Please note the programme will not be fully catered, you will need to bring lunch and snacks with you.

Can I join the programme if I live outside Wellington?

Gen Z aged 17–25  from all over New Zealand are invited to apply for the programme. The programme will take place in Wellington, in person.

You will need to be able to attend weekly sessions during the programme, so it is likely that this programme will only work logistically for Wellington-based participants