Interest in entrepreneurship has been growing across Yale, and with it, prizes and programs to kickstart new businesses and social ventures. Now, students can apply to all four of Yale’s $25,000 entrepreneurship prizes via one online application. This includes the Sabin Sustainable Venture Prize from the Yale Center for Business and the Environment (CBEY); the Thorne Prize for Social Innovation in Health or Education and the Aetna Foundation Prize for Health Equity Innovation, both from InnovateHealth Yale; and the Miller Prize from the Yale Entrepreneurial Institute (YEI). Both the Sabin and Miller Prizes are open to Yale students and postdocs, while the Thorne and Aetna Prizes are open to students only.
Three of the four prizes—Sabin, Thorne and Aetna—have a social focus, and are actively seeking ventures that address disparities in health and education as well as environmental concerns such as access to clean water, food waste and climate change impacts. The Miller Prize is open to all technology or tech-enabled startup ideas from a Yale student, with a focus on ingenuity and a high likelihood of adoption. All four prizes share one online application—due March 30, 2017—and finalists from all will be invited to pitch as part of a major event called Startup Yale on April 21.
“There is so much value in streamlining the application process for students and consolidating our resources as entrepreneurship organizations across the university,” says Jim Boyle, Managing Director of YEI. “By making the process easier for students, we hope to drive a greater number of applications that give a full representation of the creativity and talent across Yale’s many schools.”
Winners of the Sabin, Thorne and Miller Prizes are also all guaranteed a spot in the YEI Fellowship, an 8-week bootcamp for accelerating ventures run by YEI that includes $15,000, mentorship, Lean Startup education, pitching opportunities and introductions to venture capitalists and corporate partners.
Last year’s Thorne Prize winner, Spring, which uses artificial intelligence to help doctors make the best treatment decisions for patients with depression, participated in the Fellowship, won the Harvard-Yale Pitchoff, and were later chosen for the NY Digital Health Accelerator. They are currently building their venture in New York City. The startup Renewal Mill won last year’s Sabin Prize and also participated in the YEI Fellowship. They are turning agricultural waste like okara from soybean production into nutritional food products and are currently developing the startup in San Francisco.
“It’s an enormous benefit to teams to take advantage of the entrepreneurship resources from across the university—including workshops, Entrepreneurs-in-Residence, and expert office hours,” says Cassandra Walker-Harvey, Associate Director for Social Entrepreneurship at Yale. “This prepares them for submitting strong applications and expands their support network as they leave Yale to launch their ventures.”
WANT TO LEARN MORE? COME TO AN INFO SESSION! Find out more about the application process, hear from past winners, and get advice on your application. We will be holding three sessions across the campus, so sign up for the one that works best for you.
Yale Prizes Info Sessions – REGISTER HERE
- Thurs., Feb. 23, 4:30-6:30pm: Evans Hall, Room 2210.
- Tues., Feb. 28, 12-1pm: Yale School of Public Health, LEPH 103.
- Wed., March 8, 4-5pm: 254 Elm St., 3rd Floor.