Startup Sprint (Student Edition)

The J-Term Startup Sprint (January) and Summer Startup Sprint (May-June), offer NYU student and post-doc startup teams the opportunity to test the value of their solutions. These are intensive two week long startup accelerator programs to get funding, conduct customer discovery and receive mentorship.

Since participating in the 2018 January and Summer Sprints, teams have won the 300K Entrepreneurs Challenge, InnoVention Challenge, and TigerLaunch entrepreneurship competition, while 12 teams participated in either the NYU Summer Launchpad and/or Stern Venture Fellows summer 2018 program. Collectively teams have gone on to raise over $1 Million in competition funding, grants and private capital, while at least 8 of the teams are generating revenue

The next January Startup Sprint will take place January 8th-18th, 2019 (all day each week day). The next Summer Startup Sprint will take place May 28th-June 7th, 2019 (all day each week day). 

The deadline to submit your application for the January Startup Sprint is Friday, November 16th, 2018 at 5 p.m. EST. AFTER you attend an info session and/or the team hunt, apply to the Startup Sprint hereRSVP to attend a the TEAM HUNT below to learn more.

  • Tell Me More - January Term Startup Sprint

    The next Startup Sprint will be held from January 8th-January 18th, 2019. The program runs all day during the weekdays. Apply by November 16th at 5pm!

    PLEASE NOTE: This program is NOT for credit. However, (just like a startup) it REQUIRES a full-time commitment during the program.

    What You Can Expect

    Teams can expect to start off running with:

    • Workshops: Participate in workshops led by experts across the NYU and NYC startup communities
    • Founder talks: Learn from those who have been in your shoes
    • Customers: Create solutions customers love by “Getting out of the Building” and talking directly to prospective users, customers and partners
    • Connections: Meet with VCs, accelerators and more for office hours either during or shortly after the program
    • Experimentation: Learn how to run experiments to build your MVPs and prototypes
    • Community: Work alongside and learn from a diverse community of NYU startup founders
    Benefits You'll Receive

    Each team will receive funding and perks to put toward their venture, including:

    • Funding: $350 at the start of the program and eligibility for up to $1,500 in follow-on funding for the top three-five teams. All funding is offered in the form of reimbursable expenses.
    • Perks: $5K in Amazon Web Services Credits, advice on legal issues and more!
    • Ignite Fellowship Spring 2019: The top 3–4 teams from the program will be invited to participate in the Ignite Fellowship for the Spring 2019 semester.
    • SLP 2019: The top two-three teams from the program will be guaranteed an invitation to interview for the NYU Summer Launchpad accelerator 2019, to launch their venture full time.
    • Food: Lunch each day of the program (plus breakfast some other days) will be provided, plus free coffee all the time.
    • Workspace: Co-working space at the Leslie eLab for extended hours.
    Who It's For

    Open to teams of NYU undergrad and graduate student entrepreneurs from any NYU school or college, with an idea, invention and/or early mock-up or prototype of their product or service. Preference will be given to teams with at least one STEM co-founder who is female or another underrepresented minority in tech/startups.

    • Team: 2 or more entrepreneurs able to participate full time in the program, with at least 1 team member currently at NYU; Don’t have two team members? Come to the J-Sprint team hunt on November 9th (see below on this page to RSVP)
    • Commitment: Committed to your startup full-time (at least 40 hours per week) for the duration of the two-week program and a passion for the problem you hope to solve (with a plan for how you’ll continue after the program)
    • Buy-In: Understand the requirements of the program and have an openness to customer discovery
    • A lot of passion, hard work and hustle: Show us that your team has what it takes by meeting with us for coaching appointment and attending a Startup Bootcamp at the Leslie eLab, in ADVANCE of applying. Taking these actions will greatly increase your chance of getting into the program, so get started today!
    Selection Criteria

    First things first, we’ll make sure you’re part of a team of at least 2 members. Remember, at least 1 teammate must be a current NYU student! From there, we'll give strong preference to teams who have completed a Startup Bootcamp at the Leslie eLab. Apply to a Startup Bootcamp today to let us get to know you!

    A few additional criteria will determine the final selection:

    • Diversity: Preference given to teams planning to graduate in 2019 or 2020, with at least 1 female or minority co-founder
    • STEM: Some preference given to teams with STEM-centered solutions (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math)
    • Idea and Early Prototype: What is your idea and what have you done/built so far
    • Problem Identification: How well does your team understand the problem you hope to solve and the market you hope to address with your venture
    • Team Fit: Does your team have the skills and background to build and launch what you hope to create
    • Program Fit: How you believe your time in the Startup Sprint will launch your venture into the next phase
    • Coaching & Bootcamp: Preference given to teams who have received coaching from an NYU Blackstone LaunchPad coach; Sign up for a coaching appointment here. AND preference to teams who have completed a Startup Bootcamp at the Leslie eLab. Apply to a Startup Bootcamp today to let us get to know you (and so you can get to know us)!


  • FAQ - January Term Startup Sprint

    Now that you read about the program, its benefits and who should apply, check out the answers to additional questions you might have.

    Is this program only for students? While the J-Term Startup Sprint is primarily for student-led teams, teams may apply if at least one member is a current or recently graduated (Fall 2018) student, or a current faculty, researcher, or staff member. International students are welcome and encouraged to apply. Faculty and researcher led teams may also be interested in the Startup Sprint for Faculty program, held each August.


    How many teams apply and are selected for each Startup Sprint? We typically receive over 60 applications for each Startup Sprint, and select about 12 teams for each cohort. As the application process is competitive, we strongly advise meeting with a Blackstone Launchpad coach AND applying to a Startup Bootcamp to let us get to know your team, so you can stand out from the competition.

    What are the basic requirements to be considered? Teams must have two or more founders able to participate full time in the sprint. At least one founder must be a current/recently graduated student (graduated in Spring or Fall '18), or current faculty, researcher or staff member. Students graduating in 2019 or 2020 are preferred. All core team members must be committed to their startup full-time during the length of the program, should have the skills to execute, understand the program and have an openness to customer discovery. Preference is given to teams with at least one female or minority co-founder, and to teams pursuing concepts in STEM focused areas (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math).

    What if I need more people to join my team? On November 9th we’ll be hosting a team-hunt event where you can meet the other teams, join a team, and find additional co-founders. All teams are highly encouraged to attend. RSVP to the team hunt event on this page.

    What types of ventures do you accept? The J-Term Startup Sprint is intended for all types of startups which have high-growth potential. Whether focused on social innovation, software, medical devices, physical products, hardware, or other areas, all are welcome to apply.

    Do I, or my team members, have to attend an info session to apply? Yes, info session attendance is mandatory. RSVP to an info session below on this page, or email if you're unable to attend any of the info session dates due to classes/work conflicts.

    When and where does it take place? The program runs from Tuesday January 8th, 2019 until Friday, January 18th, 2019, at the Leslie eLab (all day each day). All participating team members are expected to attend all program activities, which take place on Mondays through Fridays.

    We've already taken some funding. Can we still apply? Yes.

    I have another class during J-Term. Can I still apply? Two or more core team members must be committed to their startup and able to participate in the J-Term Startup Sprint full-time during the program. However teams may include some non-core founding members or advisors who have outside obligations such as faculty appointments, internships, or classes, but they are ineligible to participate in the program.

    Our team has two venture ideas, can we submit multiple applications? While you may submit as many applications as you like, if your team is selected for the program, we expect teams to be fully committed to the venture they are selected to participate with.

    What is the deadline to apply? The deadline to submit your application is Friday, November 16th , 2019 at 5 p.m. EST. Applications will be open soon, but be sure to attend an info session first!

    What's the timeline for the application process? Submit your application by November 16th at 5pm. We'll review applications and the following week (week of November 19th) and will invite select teams to interview for the program. Interviews (10-15 minutes) will take place the week after Thanksgiving (week of November 26th), and you'll be notified of your team's acceptance the week of December 3rd.

    Who will review my application? Applications will be reviewed by and interviews will be conducted by senior members of the NYU Entrepreneurial Institute team and NYU Innovation Venture Fund. Applications will not be shared with any external parties for any reason.

    Do you give feedback on application results? Typically we do not give specific feedback on applications. However we’d be happy to meet with your team to give more general feedback and guidance about your startup through our mentorship/coaching program (open to those currently affiliated with NYU only). You can book a coaching appointment here:

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