Startup Yale
Startup Yale

To make it easier for students, we are using a streamlined application process with ONE application for all prizes. Please see FAQs below, and if you have more questions reach out to Cass Walker at cassandra.walkerharvey@yale.edu

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 service

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 a team must include at least one full-time current Yale 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 not-profit?

  • Sabin Sustainable Venture Prize: Must be for-profit

  • Thorne Prize for Social Innovation in Health or Education: Can be for-profit or non-profit

  • Aetna Foundation Prize for Health Equity Innovation: Can be for-profit or non-profit

  • Miller Prize: Can be for-profit, non-profit or just an idea!

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

What stage should my idea be?

Your idea can be any stage. The judges want to see that the $25k will be catalytic. However, if you can show that you have spoken to customers/users/beneficiaries or have a prototype of your product/service – this is seen favorably. We have seen teams who have been working on their idea for as little as 3 months or as long as several years win prizes in the past!

What is the timeline?

Final Applications are due March 30th at 5pm. Finalists will be notified by April 10th if they have been chosen to pitch at Startup Yale. Four teams per prize will be chosen to pitch live to a panel of judges at Startup Yale, April 21st, 2017.

What do I get if I win?

All prize winners will receive a $25,000 cash prize. See below for details of other benefits that are prize specific.

Sabin Sustainable Venture Prize

  • Automatic acceptance to YEI Summer Fellowship, including $15,000 stipend, 8 week incubator program and mentorship
  • $10,000 of pro bono customer insight and strategy support from Flamingo

Thorne Prize for Social Innovation in Health or Education:

  • Automatic acceptance to YEI Summer Fellowship, including $15,000 stipend, 8 week incubator program and mentorship

Miller Prize

  • Automatic acceptance to YEI Summer Fellowship, including $15,000 stipend, 8 week incubator program and mentorship

Who has won in the past?

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

Can my business idea be an international venture and not necessarily within the USA?

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