FAQs

How do I apply?

To make it easier for students, we are using a streamlined application process with a single application for all five prizes. 

 

What is the difference between the prizes?

Each prize has a different theme:

  • Sabin Sustainable Venture Prize: environmental or sustainability challenges
  • Thorne Prize for Social Innovation in Health or Education: social innovation in the fields of health or education
  • Aetna Foundation Prize for Health Equity Innovation: reducing health disparities in the United States through technology
  • Miller Prize: disruptive tech or tech-enabled services
  • Rothberg Catalyzer Prize @ Yale: innovative hardware solutions to medical challenges

 

Can I apply to more than one prize?

Yes. In the application form, you can select which prizes you would like to be considered for.

 

Am I eligible?

To be eligible for any of the $25k prizes, a team must include at least one full-time current Yale student. To be eligible for the Rothberg Catalyzer Prize @ Yale, a team must include at least one full-time current Yale undergraduate student.

 

Who are the judges?

There are different judging panels for each prize. Each judging panel is made up of experts in the relevant field, including industry experts, academics, entrepreneurs, and investors.

 

Does my venture have to be a for-profit or a non-profit?

For the Thorne Prize for Social Innovation in Health or Education, the Aetna Foundation Prize for Health Equity Innovation, the Miller Prize, and the Rothberg Catalyzer Prize @ Yale, your venture/idea can be for-profit or non-profit.

For the Sabin Sustainable Venture prize, your venture must be for-profit.

Please note, it is NOT required for teams to be incorporated before competing for Yale Prizes. 

 

At what stage should my idea be?

Your idea can be any stage. The judges want to see that the $25,000 will be catalytic. However, the judges will look favorably on teams who can show that they have spoken to customers/users/beneficiaries, or who have a prototype of their product or service. In the past, we have seen teams win prizes who have been working on their idea for as little as 3 months, or as long as several years!

 

What is the timeline for the prizes?

Applications are due March 28, 2018 at 11:59pm. Four finalists per prize will be notified by April 10th if they have been chosen to pitch live to a panel of judges at Startup Yale—April 16-20, 2018.

 

What do I get if I win?

All prize winners will receive a $25,000 cash prize and automatic acceptance to the CITY Summer Fellowship, which includes a $15,000 stipend, a 8-week incubator program, and mentorship. Prize-specific benefits include: 

Sabin Sustainable Venture Prize

  • $10,000 of pro-bono customer insight and strategy support from Flamingo

 

Who has won in the past?

To see past winners and finalists, check out the following links:

 

What if my idea/venture is international?

The only prize where ideas need to be domestically focused is the Aetna Foundation Prize for Health Equity Innovation. For all other prizes, ideas can be domestic or international.

 

What if my question isn't on this list?

If you have more questions, reach out to Cass Walker at cassandra.walkerharvey@yale.edu.