Become an Entrepreneur

Over the course of a jam-packed week, think of a new business idea, perform primary market research, build a prototype, speak to investors, work with mentors, and meet friends and future business partners.

The Global Startup Challenge immerses you in a working startup environment with all of the tools, experts, and resources to start your entrepreneurial journey.

Meet fellow students from around the world, work with world class founders, learn how to prototype, and bring your idea to the verge of launch. The Global Startup Challenge will inspire the next generation of startup leaders!

Learn

Gain exposure to important business concepts and learn about the building blocks of any new venture. Each morning, work with your team to discuss business cases, take part in business challenges, and consult with founders from the community.

Afternoons are spent developing critical skills that every founder needs: presentation skills, audience building, prototyping, web development, and budgeting and finance.

Build

All teams that complete the Global Startup Challenge must build a prototype. Work with our mentors to build your product, design your mobile app, or map out your web service. Students will be given a number of digital and physical resources to construct a first version prototype with which to speak to potential customers and conduct market research.

Experiment

You’ll be refining and updating your product and business model throughout the week. How do you find the perfect target audience? What features do your early adopters crave? What price should you sell your product for? The best way to answer these questions is to conduct business experiments in the real world!

Pitch

Teams will be presenting their progress daily to the entire class and our panel of mentors for valuable feedback. Every student will hone their presentation and public speaking skills over the course of the GSC. On the last day, teams will give their final presentations to parents, friends, mentors, investors, and the community.

Global Startup Challenge by the numbers

3+

Years Developing and Testing Our Curriculum

16

Countries from where our Students, Teachers, and Mentors hail

400+

Students We’ve Worked with

100

Our goal is to bring 100 student-founded, -driven, -operated ventures to market over the next 5 years.

The Schedule

Here’s what you’ll be doing for a week:

Day One: Meet Your Team & Mentor, Develop Your Idea

Meet Your Team and Mentor

Spend the first day meeting your team members from around the world! Each team is made up of 5-8 students and is paired with a mentor to work with for the week.

Value Proposition and Presentation Workshops

Work with the instructor and your mentor to complete the Value Proposition and Presentation workshops as you prepare to pitch your new business idea for the first time!

Day Two: Customer Research and Prototyping

Custom Segmentation Workshop and Primary Research

The morning workshop on Day 2 centers around defining your potential customer base. After the workshop, your team and mentor will develop and execute a primary customer research plan.

Prototyping

With the knowledge gathered from your market research, begin to map out your plan to develop your early stage prototype. Mentors will help student teams use different resources for developing web, mobile, or physical prototypes.

Day Three: Revenue Models, Expert Consults, and Audience Building

Business Model Workshop

The morning workshop of Day 3 focuses on discussing and analyzing business models, distribution strategies, and customer relationships.

Midweek Presentations

Student teams will present their progress each day, but the midweek review is the most important. Each team will be given up to 10 minutes to pitch their businesses and then will receive feedback from the mentor team.

Expert Consultations

Local experts and entrepreneurs will join the class to discuss their businesses and to give student teams important feedback for their own projects.

Team Activities

It’s not all work at the Global Startup Challenge. Break up the week by taking the afternoon off to explore our host cities. In Boston, teams compete against one another in a citywide photo-scavenger hunt.

Day Four: Business Model Workshop II & Business Expo

Business Model Workshop II

The second Business Model workshop will finish the teaching of business concepts. This workshop will focus on business activities, resources, and key partnerships.

Business Expo

In the evening on the Day 4, teams will design and build business expo booths. Hundreds of people from the community come to give feedback and vote on their favorite businesses.

Day Five: Budgeting, Finance, and Final Rehearsal

Budgeting and Finance Prep

The last workshop of the week will have each team meet with a professional CFO to review their financial projections and cost estimates.

Final Rehearsal

The last chance for teams to practice and perfect their pitches! The final rehearsal is a dry run on the final presentation, which will make up half of the total score for each of our teams.

Day Six: Final Presentations and Awards Lunch

Final Presentations

In front of family, friends, our mentors, and the community, each of the student teams will tell the story of building their new company. Final presentations will account for half of the score for each of our teams.

Awards Ceremony

The Global Startup Challenge concludes with a lunch for all of our final presentation attendees and the awards ceremony. We award winning teams, the school that shows the best performance throughout the week, and individual founder awards, given to one member per team.