A comprehensive list of resources available for undergraduate entrepreneurs at Cal When I came to Cal, I was excited by the campus’s spirit of innovation and knew I wanted to start my own company. However, despite the ample opportunities available, the decentralized nature of our large campus made it difficult for me to find the resources I needed. It took me a good part of the past three years to become acquainted. Through this guide, I hope to make it easier for current and aspiring student founders to navigate the Berkeley startup ecosystem and take advantage of the fantastic opportunities listed below. Quick Notes: This guide was made with undergraduates in mind, however ~60% of these resources are accessible by graduate students and alumni as well. For a broad overview of all resources available at Cal, regardless of class status, check out Berkeley Gateway to Innovation . Because the previous version was so popular (over 7,000+ reads!!!), I updated this post in May 2018 to include relevant information for the 2018–2019 school year. Table of Contents: I. Undergraduate Courses II. Funding (VC & Competitions) III. Incubators & Accelerators IV. Student Organizations V. Events VI. Misc. I. Undergraduate Courses Most undergraduate classes on technology entrepreneurship are taught by the (SCET), a program within The College of Engineering under (IEOR). Undergraduates are eligible to receive a through the SCET upon completion of the A. Richard Newton Lecture Series, plus 5 additional units ( ). Sutardja Center for Technology and Entrepreneurship Industrial Engineering & Operations Research Certificate for Technology and Entrepreneurship more info here You can find SCET course descriptions, class numbers, and units count here Across the street from the SCET building in Memorial Stadium is the Haas School of Business, and the (BHEP). The BHEP, like the SCET, offers undergraduate courses on technology startups, but provides no certificate of its own. Berkeley-Haas Entrepreneurship Program You can find BHEP course descriptions, class numbers, and units count here Besides the SCET and BHEP, . These include: other departments at Berkeley also offer classes that students may find useful Principles of Engineering Economics (ENGIN 120) | Eric Friedman Industrial Design and Human Factors (IEOR 170) | and Ken Goldberg Cecilia Aragon Leading People (UGBA 105) | James Lincoln Intellectual Property for Entrepreneurs (UGBA 190T) | Jon Metzler Integrated Device Design (CS 294–84) | Bjoern Hartmann Introduction to Product Development (Mec Eng 110) | Alice Agogino Innovation and Entrepreneurship: Social and Cultural Context (Sociology 121) | Szonja Ivester How to Build the Future (CS 198) | A Decal taught by student instructors . More information here You can find course descriptions, class numbers, and units count on BerkeleyTime.com UC Berkeley also offers a known as . Through a partnership with the , Berkeley students will spend a month in Europe (Portugal in 2018, Italy in 2017, France in 2016) to learn from famous motivational speakers, leaders in industry, and serial entrepreneurs and apply the teachings to launch their own company. summer study abroad program Entrepreneurship and Innovation in Europe European Innovation Academy II. Funding (VC & Funding Competitions) One of the amazing things about Berkeley is the . Here is a list of Berkeley affiliated funding opportunities I have come across: abundant on-campus funding available for student projects : The House Fund is an early-stage (pre-seed & seed) investment fund exclusively for startups founded by Berkeley students, alumni, and faculty. It is founded and managed by , a recent Berkeley alum himself (c/o 2014), with The House Fund Jeremy Fiance $6 million in AUM currently and reportedly raising up to $50M for a second fund . Dorm Room Fund SF is a supported by and run by an all-student investment team to invest purely in student-run startups in the area. The Investment Team is composed of 8 students from UC Berkeley and Stanford (read: Stanfurd). Dorm Room Fund : $500,000 fund First Round Capital : Contrary is a decentralized, university-focused venture capital fund for seed stage companies with presence on 50+ campuses including UC Berkeley. They recently announced and plans to cut Contrary Capital their debut fund of $2.2M checks ranging from $50,000 up to $150,000. : A network of Berkeley alumni, current and former faculty interested in building and investing in the entrepreneurial community at Cal. They hold quarterly pitch meetings that students can apply to to be considered. Berkeley Angel Network : Cal Hacks is a weekend long hackathon hosted by UC Berkeley, the largest collegiate hackathon in the world, . Hackers are given free reign to create , and will ultimately be judged by a panel of industry judges on “creativity, technical difficulty, polish, and utility”. Tech companies from around the Bay provide mentorship for the event as well as financial sponsorship for over Cal Hacks open to undergraduate students of all majors from any university any type of project that sparks their interest $50,000 in prizes for the top teams. The Dean’s Seed Fund, part of the BHEP, awards to early-stage start ups involving current Haas students (undergrad or MBA). Berkeley-Haas Dean’s Startup Seed Fund: Startup 20 $5,000 seed grants (10 in December, 10 in May) as well as office spaces Shameless plug: My non-profit start-up, Paradigm Shift , was part of the Spring 2016 Cohort. Feel free to drop me a line if you have any questions about the application process. The Berkeley Challenge: The Berkeley Challenge is an annual entrepreneurship competition hosted by Pear VC for startups with at least one founding member that is a current Berkeley student or alumnus. Pear will invest in the winning team for a 5% stake, and designate 10% of ownership back to UC Berkeley. . Pear’s up to $250,000 via equity seed financing Winners will also gain access to Pear’s network, exclusive events, office-hours, and “hacker studio” in downtown Palo Alto Click here to learn more. : Big Ideas is an annual contest aimed at providing funding, support, and encouragement for student projects in the 9 following categories: Art & Social Change, Energy & Resource Alternatives, Financial Inclusion, Food Systems, Global Health, Hardware for Good, Improving Student Life, Information Technology for Society, and Scaling Up Big Ideas. The funding for the program is provided by Andrew & Virginia Rudd Family Foundation with Big Ideas @ Berkeley awards ranging between $5,000 to $10,000 for winners. : GSVC is a global competition that provides over to help student founders tackle some of the world’s most pressing social challenges. The program was initially founded by Haas MBAs in 1999 and have grown to receive 600 entries from 65 countries in 2017. Global Social Venture Competition $80,000 in funding, mentorship, and exposure : The CITRIS Tech for Social Good Program provides support to UC Berkeley undergraduate, graduate, and postdoctoral students, groups, teams or organizations developing hardware, software or hosting events which support technology for social good to applicants each semester. CITRIS Tech for Social Good Program up to $2,000 in funding : Provides for technology-based student projects. Student Technology Fund up to $5,000 : hosted by and for the first time in 2017. Not sure if this will be an annual event. CalSpark $10,000 startup competition NextGen Consulting at Berkeley PlayScape : Startup pitch competition for blockchain companies hosted by . Held for the first time in Spring 2018, the winning team, , received over Frontier Innovation Awards Bee Partners Shelf Auctioning Network $500K in funding. : A newly formed blockchain investment fund focused on privacy preserving technologies. Founded by recent graduates and Blockchain at Berkeley early members. Dekrypt Capital Besides approaching these opportunities directly, . Deal scouts are students who are well-integrated within the school’s entrepreneurship ecosystem and selected by venture funds to serve as their eyes and ears on campus. At Berkeley we have scouts from CRV (me!), Pear, Sequoia Capital, NEA, and more, all of whom are willing and able to provide feedback and connect you with someone on the investment team if he/she thinks there is a good fit. I aggregated , but this list is likely somewhat outdated. A simple LinkedIn search for “Deal Scout” or something similar and filtering by UC Berkeley should yield a more up-to-date list. founders can also try reaching out to Student deal scouts a list of all the Berkeley deal scouts in the past BHEP’s Entrepreneurship Ecosystem Map. Some of these programs are exclusive to Haas-MBA students and are not mentioned in this post. III. Incubators & Accelerators Beyond VC and competitions, students also have access to to receive funding and guidance for their companies. numerous student-run incubators and accelerators : LAUNCH is Berkeley’s leading accelerator, designed to transform early stage startups into fundable companies. It is a where companies are paired with serial-entrepreneur mentors to build out their teams, protect IP, connect with industry experts, get minimum viable products into customers’ hands, prove their scalable business model, pitch to investors, and become fundable. Companies with at least one team member that is affiliated with any UC campus are eligible. LAUNCH 3-month program Winning teams at LAUNCH’s demo-day typically receive around $50,000. Select LAUNCH companies: TubeMogul (acq. by Adobe for $540M), Byte Foods ($5.5M seed led by Bessemer Venture Partners ), Xendit (YC S15). Below is this year’s LAUNCH demo day for those interested. Launch 2018 Demo Day drive.google.com : SkyDeck is a Berkeley affiliated accelerator and venture fund located in the tallest building in Downtown Berkeley. It provides startups with at least one member affiliated with Berkeley, UCSF, or Lawrence Berkeley National Labs . There are two tracks: Cohort (full 6-month program), and Hot-desk (more flexible, for earlier stage companies or companies with funding already). SkyDeck workspace, programming, speaker series, and mentorship Select SkyDeck companies: Ensighta Security (acq. by FireEye), Lendsnap (YC S16), Civil Maps ($6.6M seed). : The Foundry is a UC accelerator located on Berkeley’s campus for startups with at least one member affiliated with a UC campus. It is a accelerator program where admitted teams receive in cash plus worth of in-kind infrastructure and services, as well as space and mentorship. CITRIS Foundry one-year $5,000 to $10,000 up to $50,000 : The House Residency is an incubator part of The House Fund. Berkeley students, faculty, and alumni will receive necessary to build a company. Companies that join this residency program will also The House Residency space, mentorship, and infrastructure resources receive up to $20,000 in funding from The House Fund. : Free Ventures is a UC Berkeley student-run accelerator for student startups located in . Free Ventures The House building Student founders receive 2 academic units, need-based funding, mentorship, and workspace to pursue their ideas. Select Free Ventures companies: Blitz Esports (formerly Instant eSport, YC S15, $2M seed from KPCB Edge & Greylock Partners), Dot (Raised $115,401 on KickStarter) Not technically an incubator, but a great resource on-campus for students to . Open to all Berkeley students. CITRIS Invention Lab : design and prototype ideas : QB3 incubators provide with access to laboratory space. QB3 Garabge@Berkeley is located in Stanley Hall with . Qb3 Garage@Berkeley biotech startups 800 square feet of wet laboratory space and 8 stations There are also non-UC Berkeley affiliated accelerators & incubators in the area, including The Batchery and Berkeley Ventures , that are worth checking out. IV. Student Organizations On-campus clubs and independent student organizations are great places for founders to expand their network, find co-founders, and discuss ideas. Here are some good places to look: Will represents the entrepreneurship community at Berkeley in the Associated Students of the University of California (aka undergraduate student council). Following his , joining his office, and staying up to date on his upcoming programs are all great ways to watch the Berkeley ecosystem develop. ASUC Senator’s Office of Will Wang: Facebook Page Human-centered consultancy. Berkeley Innovation : design : Organize key events, issue directories and publications, and serve as a connector for student entrepreneurs. Berkeley Leadership Network : Community of students interested in crypto and blockchain technology. , would recommend students who are interested in this space joining. Blockchain at Berkeley This is their public slack highly : Pro-bono software development for non-profits. Blueprint : Technology consulting club for high-growth startups. CodeBase Community that hosts talks, hackathons, info sessions, workshops, and a . Computer Science Undergraduate Association: biannual Startup Fair : Undergraduate student organization focused on education, professional development, and community building within the data science community. Data Science Society at Berkeley : Technology consulting club for students of all backgrounds. DiversaTech Consulting : National EECS honor society. Eta Kappa Nu : Organization for female technologists of all backgrounds. FEM Tech : Hosts workshops and an innovation hackathon to mitigate solve campus related problems. Innovate Berkeley : ML/AI project development club. Launchpad : Cal’s machine learning community ML@Berkeley : A community of mobile app developers. Mobile Developers at Berkeley Consulting for Biotech companies. Phoenix Consulting Group: : Co-ed entrepreneurship fraternity. Sigma Eta Pi : Association for Berkeley’s entrepreneurship community connecting students, organizations, and external partners. SCET Student Association : Non-profit that provides consulting for Israeli startups. TAMID Group : Strategy consulting for Bay Area startups. Venture Strategy Solutions : Cal’s VR community. Virtual Reality @ Berkeley Click here to see all student organizations at Berkeley. V. Events There are many tech/startup events at Berkeley, so instead of listing them individually, here are some channels to subscribe to to stay up-to-date: soooo Berkeley Entrepreneurship Association FB Group Berkeley Startups & Entrepreneurs FB Group Class of 20xx Official FB Group ( , , , ) 2019 2020 2021 2022 Blockchain at Berkeley FB Group Startups@Berkeley FB Group Innovators@Cal Forum FB Group Sutardja Center’s FB Group EECS Event Calendar : Free weekly dialogue every Wednesdays (starts at 12pm PST) highlighting leading voices on societal-scale technology challenges. CITRIS Research Exchange Seminar Series Free lunch is provided with RSVP in advance. VI. MISC And finally, here is an assortment of useful links that doesn’t quite fit anywhere else: : Most exhaustive public database for Berkeley startups ( BerkeleyBase Credit to Ruochen Huang ). : Help users make startup connections such as finding co-founders, investors, interns and more within the Berkeley ecosystem. BearFounders : Like TechCrunch but ran by university students covering campus affiliated startups exclusively. Launched in early 2018 and currently cover startups from Berkeley, Stanford, Harvard, MIT, and UPenn. It’s a great way to see what other student entrepreneurs are working on around the country. StartU : Group for startup founders who are also UC Berkeley alumni. CalFounders I’m subscribed to over 20 technology and entrepreneurship related newsletters. It’s a great way to stay up to date on technology trends and what other ambitious founders are working on; here are some of my favorites: : weekly newsletter ran by & Moore, investors at , covering trends, news, and internship and full-time job openings in technology. Accelerated Justine Olivia CRV : daily musings from a prolific investor in the NYC ecosystem AVC USV’s Fred Wilson, : daily newsletter on general technology news Crunchbase Daily : Weekly newsletter containing the best of Y Combinator’s blog Hack News. Full of interesting articles and links. Hacker Newsletter : Weekly opinionated recap of the most interesting news in blockchain. Token Economy I hope you found this post helpful in turning the ideas gnawing at the back of your head into reality. Feel free to email me at dtao114@berkeley with feedback, and best of luck to you going forward! :D About the Author: David Tao is a Senior studying Economics at UC Berkeley. He is passionate about working with startups, and is involved in Berkeley’s entrepreneurship ecosystem through the LAUNCH accelerator, CRV’s Deal Scout program, and blogging. He interned at Anthos Capital, a Santa Monica based venture and growth equity firm, during Summer 2018 and will return as a full-time investor upon graduation.