• Selection Criteria

    Successful applicants to the Venture Lab will not only present an innovative way of addressing a critical social, economic, or environmental issue, but also explain why they have what it takes to succeed as a team. We believe strong teams are composed of individuals with shared values and complementary strengths. For this reason, we look at both the team and the venture itself. The maximum capacity for the spring Venture Lab course is 12 teams.

    Please review the Application Guidelines (PDF) before you apply.


    Leadership and Entrepreneurial Vision

    Do you have the ability to inspire others, as well as the emotional intelligence to lead effectively? Are you willing to take responsibility for enabling others to achieve shared goals in the face of uncertainty?

    Resilience and Growth Mindset

    Show us that you are receptive to feedback and can learn from past experiences and change your mind. Are you able to anticipate obstacles and bounce back from them?

    Ability to Collaborate and Build a Team

    Demonstrate your ability to resolve conflicts and bring together the necessary people to create your venture.


    Insight and Importance

    • Clarity with which the unmet need of a particular community has been articulated
    • Evidence of insight gained through direct engagement with the target customer and/or community served
    • Evidence the unmet need represents a significant societal challenge

    Social Impact and Innovation

    • Potential of the venture to address the problem
    • Extent to which the approach is innovative or novel
    • Vision for how the venture would scale to have transformative impact


    • Preliminary evidence of a potential market for the product or service
    • Ideas about how to measure the social, environmental, and economic impact of the venture
    • Potential to become financially sustainable and/or receive financial support from additional donors or investors