We’re excited to announce that we are now accepting applications through January 29 for Spring Blackstone LaunchPad & Techstars LaunchPad Spring ’21 Fellowships. Student ventures selected for the program will participate in a 15-week mentor-driven program with access to industry experts, successful entrepreneurs, exclusive guest speakers, and investors. Up to 50 student founders will be selected from across the entire LaunchPad global network and awarded $5,000 in non-dilutive grant funding to support their time working on advancing technology ventures.
The focus of the Spring Fellowship is technology ventures, which includes ventures that are either:
- Developing new technology to solve existing problems (including hardware, software, SAAS and mobile applications and computing, AI, VR, machine-learning, blockchain and cybersecurity startups)
- Applying current technology to solve new problems or in a new way (including new uses of online platforms and marketplaces, leveraging the IoT, remote/cloud computing, electronic communication and entertainment)
- Applications: NOW through January 29, 2021
- Application review: February 1 to February 12, 2021
- Selected companies announced (publicly): February 22, 2021
- Fellowship Runs: March 1 to April 23, 2021
Application criteria are here:
- Must be a current student OR 2020 graduate (undergraduate level, graduate level) enrolled at LaunchPad network university.
- Must be a lead founder / co-founder of the venture.
- Must have an existing tech venture past the idea stage (venture may be for-profit, not-for-profit, Public Benefit Corporation or B-corporation).
- A tech venture is defined as: Developing new technology to solve problems (including hardware, software, SAAS and mobile applications and computing; AI, VR, machine-learning, blockchain and cybersecurity startups); Applying current technology to solve problems (including new uses of online platforms and marketplaces, leveraging the IoT, remote/cloud computing, electronic communication and entertainment)
- Must be self-motivated and driven to complete work independently and with minimal oversight.
- Must have availability to dedicate between 3-4 hours per week on the program.
- Must have well-defined, quantifiable (SMART) goals and milestones to be completed within the 8-week period of the fellowship.
- Must be past the idea-stage and ideally have a pitch deck, executive summary, a logo, a website, social media accounts (Ex; LinkedIn and Twitter).
- Must have some traction e.g., early sales, MOUs, funding raised, customer interest, user base, etc. (we will ask for examples in this form).
- Must have demonstrated leadership in both executing on business or program operations and galvanizing support.
- Must have experience working with mentors or advisors, integrating feedback into their venture, and demonstrating coachability.
- Must be able to complete and fulfill all required duties as posed by the Fellowship.
The selection committee is comprised of Future Founders, Techstars and the Blackstone Charitable Foundation. The committee will give special consideration to diverse leadership and/or founding teams.
This is a highly competitive offering, so we encourage you to reach out to the Syracuse LaunchPad to ensure compliance. Note that students who are active LaunchPad members and referred by their Campus Director do not need a letter of recommendation, otherwise you will need to supply a letter of recommendation.
About the organizers:
The Blackstone Charitable Foundation’s Entrepreneurship Initiative
The Foundation focuses its efforts in targeted regions of interest to the firm, and works closely with local stakeholders to build programs and make grants to support entrepreneurs. These programs foster networks and provide resources like mentorship, content, and events, to help entrepreneurs grow and scale their businesses.
Techstars is the global platform for investment and innovation. Techstars founders connect with other entrepreneurs, experts, mentors, alumni, investors, community leaders, and corporations to grow their companies. Techstars operates three divisions: Techstars Mentorship-Driven Accelerator Programs, Techstars Corporate Innovation Partnerships and Techstars Communities. Techstars accelerator portfolio includes more than 2,200 companies with a market cap of more than $27 Billion.
Techstars operates almost 50 accelerators around the world in places like Boulder, New York City, London, Tel Aviv, and Cape Town. Techstars has both industry agnostic “city” programs, and “vertical” industry programs typically operated in partnership with large corporations. Collectively, the companies that have completed these programs have raised over $9.5 Billion.
Future Founders believes every youth can become an entrepreneur. We were created to foster inclusion in the entrepreneurial community and to seed diverse founders into the entrepreneurial ecosystem.
For 18 to 30-year-olds across the country, Future Founders offers various business accelerators to help them create and scale ventures across all industries. Our methodology focuses on pairing a strong peer community of like-minded entrepreneurs with intensive coaching from seasoned entrepreneurs. We bring together dozens of universities, incubators, community organizations, and businesses to provide a dynamic suite of services for young founders.
We have three main programs: Startup Bootcamp, the Fellowship, and U.Pitch. Startup Bootcamp is a crash course in “Startup 101” designed to help underestimated and underrepresented 18 to 30-year-olds turn their idea, passion, or side hustle into a business. The Fellowship is a prestigious year-long cohort designed to support young entrepreneurs from across the country grow and lead sustainable companies. And U.Pitch is a national elevator pitch competition where collegiate entrepreneurs showcase their business ideas for a chance at glory and a cash prize. Together, these programs offer young entrepreneurs at any stage the opportunity to scale their impact. In fact, founders in our Fellowship program have generated $32.8 million in revenue, raised $34.9 million in capital, and created 543 jobs over the last four years alone. Visit the Future Founders website to learn more today!