NYU Entrepreneurs Challenge FAQs

Got questions about the Entrepreneurs Challenge? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered.

Frequently Asked Questions

General

The three competition tracks are: 1) Technology 2) Healthcare & Biomedical, and 3) New Venture

The NYU Entrepreneurs Challenge is administered annually by the Berkley Center for Entrepreneurship at NYU Stern. The Berkley Center for Entrepreneurship provides a number of programs and services to support NYU community members with an interest in creating new ventures. The Center provides startup acceleration programs, mentoring, workshops and technical assistance, all designed to provide NYU students, alumni, faculty and staff with the skills and resources needed to discover and execute bold new ideas. 

All current NYU students, NYU faculty, NYU researchers and Stern alumni are welcome to apply. Alumni of other NYU schools are also welcome to participate, but must do so by teaming up with currently enrolled students, current NYU faculty members, NYU researchers and/or Stern alumni. For a more complete discussion of eligibility, visit the Eligibility page. 

All Fall 2021 programming will be held remotely. At this time, we are unsure whether any Spring 2022 programming will be conducted  in-person. We will be closely monitoring the evolving COVID-19 pandemic and making decisions based on CDC, NYS and NYU health and safety guidelines. We will communicate any decisions and/or changes as those are made. The health and safety of the NYU community, Challenge participants, and Berkley Center team members are our first priority. 

Eligibility

You can view a complete list of requirements on the Eligibility page. 

Students currently enrolled in any degree-seeking program at NYU, current full-time NYU faculty members, current NYU researchers, as well as alumni who have earned a degree from the Stern School of Business are welcome to apply to the Challenge. Alumni of other NYU schools are also welcome to compete, but must do so by teaming up with currently enrolled students, current full-time NYU faculty members, NYU researchers and/or Stern alumni.

The NYU representative must hold at least 15% equity in the venture and intend to play a material role in the development and presentation of the venture during the Challenge and afterwards. For a more complete discussion of Eligibility, visit the Eligibility page. 

Alumni of the NYU Stern School of Business may apply on their own. Alumni from any other NYU schools can compete by joining a team with at least one NYU student currently enrolled in a degree-seeking program, a current NYU faculty member, a current NYU researcher, or a Stern alumnus/a. For a more complete discussion of Eligibility, visit the Eligibility page. 

Non-NYU individuals are not permitted to apply on their own. However, they may join a team that includes at least one NYU student currently enrolled in a degree-seeking program, a current NYU faculty member, a current NYU researcher, or an alumnus/a of a degree program from the Stern School of Business.

The NYU Representative must hold at least 15% equity in the venture and play a material role in the development and presentation of the venture both during the Challenge and afterwards. 

You may re-apply with the same idea/concept if you did not participate/compete in the Final Round of a previous competition cycle. If you pitched in the Finals you would be able to re-apply only with a new, completely different venture idea, as determined by the Berkley Center for Entrepreneurship. 

Applying to the Challenge

Teams must apply for admission into the NYU Entrepreneurs Challenge by submitting an application at https://nyusternberkleycenter.smapply.io. Applications will open on Thursday, September 30, 2021. 

Application decisions will be emailed by November 24, 2021. 

We’ll ask for your venture’s name and a brief description of the idea. Your team will also need to complete a written deliverable, the Concept Summary, plus a 5-minute video. Finally, each team member will be required to pay an application fee.

Anyone receiving an equity stake in the venture is required to register as a team member and pay the required application fee. Additionally, team members who are NOT receiving equity but will be actively participating in Entrepreneurs Challenge events are also required to pay the application fee. 

NYU Students: $25

Students enrolled elsewhere: $35

NYU Faculty, Researchers, and Alumni: $100

Non-NYU graduates: $100

Yes. You can submit more than 1 idea and/or be a member of more than 1 team. However, if two or more of your ideas/teams are accepted into this year’s cohort, you will be permitted to continue with only 1 of those ideas/teams. 

As long as you meet the eligibility requirements on your own, you are permitted to be a team of 1 person. However, we strongly encourage you to find co-founders and/or teammates, as this helps tremendously with dividing up the work and also having a diverse set of skills and perspectives. We will share ways to help find teammates. 

Competition

  • The New Venture Competition awards a total of $75,000 in seed funding in the form of a KISS investment. 
  • The Technology Venture Competition awards a total of $75,000 in seed funding in the form of a KISS investment. 
  • The Healthcare and Biomedical Venture Competition awards a total of $75,000 in seed funding in the form of a KISS investment.
 

The prize money is disbursed in tranches to the winning teams from each track as they meet critical milestones. 

Each winning team is also connected with pro bono services provided by our partners, valued at over $30,000. 

A portion of the prize pool will be awarded as prototyping grants to Semi-finalists, who must successfully undergo an approval process. The remainder of the prize pool will be awarded as investments and disbursed to winning teams upon

(1) incorporation of the businesses and (2) completion of milestones agreed upon by both the winning team and the Berkley Center for Entrepreneurship.

All funds will be disbursed via paper check or direct electronic deposit.