VC University ONLINE Scholarship
Before applying for the Venture Forward Scholarship, please read the following instructions carefully to learn:
- Whether you are eligible for the scholarship.
- The application requirements and deadlines.
- How to make your application the strongest it can be.
About VC University ONLINE
This certificate program is the definitive introductory online course on venture finance. Through lectures, interactive assessments and quizzes, virtual office hours, interviews with leading venture capitalists, and monthly webinars, participants will learn the nuts and bolts of venture finance, and earn a certificate of completion.
VC University Audience
VC University is open to anyone interested in emerging company finance, including angels, VCs, entrepreneurs, attorneys, etc. The course is NOT limited to college students / any specific age group. (The scholarship has additional criteria, outlined below.)
The next course will begin on June 1, 2021. The program is designed to be completed in 8 weeks, but participants have 5 months to complete the program and earn their certificate of completion. The following course will begin on September 1, 2021.
Tuition for VC University ONLINE is $1500. Venture Forward is proud to offer a limited number of full and partial scholarships to cover the cost of tuition for qualified candidates.
Venture Forward Scholarship
Since VC University launched in 2019, Venture Forward has awarded full scholarships to at least 10% of each cohort. Thanks to the financial support of several donors*, we’ve recently been able to expand the number of full scholarships awarded, and offer additional partial scholarships. (Full and partial scholarships are awarded through the same application.)
So far, VC University ONLINE has served nearly 1000 participants across 6 cohorts, and Venture Forward has awarded 130+ full scholarships and 91 partial scholarships.
Office Hours & Mentorship
Recipients of the full Venture Forward scholarship also receive access to special office hours, as well as a dedicated mentorship program. (These components are not offered to partial scholarship recipients at this time.)
The mentorship program begins 8 weeks after the course starts. It builds upon the technical education provided by VC University, and offers industry connections, insight, and support. Participants are paired with two VC mentors for three monthly check-ins, during which the mentors will provide you with advice and guidance on your professional pursuits.
*If you are interested in supporting Venture Forward’s scholarship or mentorship efforts, please email Maryam Haque at email@example.com.
Please review the evaluation criteria carefully to determine whether you qualify as a candidate for the Venture Forward Scholarship to VC University ONLINE:
To be considered eligible, applicants MUST meet the following criteria. Without exception, applicants must:
- Currently reside in the United States.
- Specifically intend to pursue a career in VC.
- Specifically intend to pursue a VC career in, and focused on, the United States.
- Submit a complete application by the deadline (see Timeline section below).
- Cannot have previously completed a VC University ONLINE or LIVE course.
The strongest applications are those that clearly communicate that they meet the following evaluation criteria. This scholarship is intended to support candidates who:
- Are part of a demographic group that is historically underrepresented in venture capital (e.g. by race/ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, geography, veteran status, etc.)
- Are committed to expanding opportunity for others who are historically underrepresented and underestimated.
- Would significantly benefit from a structured introduction and exploration of technical VC concepts and the industry landscape.
- Would otherwise be unable to participate due to the cost.
- Complete the application in a deliberate, thoughtful manner.
In addition to the eligibility and evaluation criteria, here are some further things to consider:
- Career Goals: While we understand that many people would meaningfully benefit from participating in VC University, the scholarship is for candidates who specifically intend to pursue careers in venture capital, in the United States. If you do not specifically intend to pursue a career in VC, or you intend to pursue an internationally-focused career in VC, you will not be awarded a scholarship.
- Financial Need: This scholarship is intended for students who would otherwise be prohibited from participating by the cost. If you’re already working for a VC firm or a related company, we strongly encourage you to ask your employer to subsidize the cost of tuition as a professional development investment. If this is a possibility for you, please pursue this route before applying for a scholarship. Feel free to use this template to help draft your request.
- Previous Applications: If you previously applied but were not awarded a scholarship, you are strongly encouraged to reapply, provided you carefully review the criteria first. Sometimes, stellar candidates require several attempts to craft a strong and compelling application. There’s no penalty for reapplying.
- Additional Outreach: We do not accept recommendations or supplemental outreach as part of our consideration process; scholarship applicants are evaluated solely on the strength of the information provided on the application. Please do not send any additional communications beyond the application, as they will not be considered.
June 2021 Cohort:
- Mon. Mar. 15, 2021: Scholarship application opens
- Fri. April 2, 2021: Deadline to apply for scholarship
- Fri. April 23, 2021: Scholarship recipients notified & response requested
- Mon. April 26, 2021: General Registration Opens
- Tues. Jun. 1, 2021: VC University ONLINE begins
- August 2021: Mentorship Program begins
The application takes approximately 30 minutes. It has 4 main sections:
- Personal Information – Contact Info, Location, etc.
- Professional Information – Current role, professional goals, etc.
- Short-Answer Questions – 3-4 Short-answer questions, listed below.
- Demographic Information – Gender, race/ethnicity, financial need, etc.
The short-answer section includes 3 mandatory short-answer questions, and one optional question (100 words or fewer):
- WHAT inspired you to pursue a career in venture capital?
- WHAT are your professional goals, and how would this program support those goals?
- HOW do you intend to support underrepresented investors and founders?
- (OPTIONAL) Do you participate in any community-building / volunteer / mentorship / public service activities?
The strongest applications are those that effectively demonstrate that you meet the scholarship criteria, and that answer the questions clearly and concisely. Please try to keep your answers focused and specific. Avoid going on tangents, or giving answers that are vague or overly broad.
The optional question is a good opportunity to demonstrate ways you’ve acted to support marginalized communities, or for those who aren’t yet working in/around venture capital, it’s an opportunity to show ways you’re engaging with the startup and VC community.
Candidates will see a confirmation page once the application has been successfully submitted. There will not be a follow-up confirmation email.