Applications for the 2021 Alumni New Venture Challenge Due January 5

Care Advisors

Care Advisors won first place and $65,000 at the inaugural Alumni New Venture Challenge finals in 2019. The company  helps hospitals get paid more from the government through its Medicaid enrollment software, which automates the manual process of enrolling patients in Medicaid. (Photo by Matt Marton)

Alumni of the University of Chicago have the opportunity to once again get support from the Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation. The Alumni New Venture Challenge (ANVC) is returning for 2021 and will take place in six different geographies—the Midwest, East Coast, West Coast, Europe, Asia-Pacific, and Latin America.

The Alumni New Venture Challenge is one of the five tracks of the Polsky Center’s New Venture Challenge, a nationally-ranked accelerator, which is recognized among other top accelerators such as Y Combinator and Techstars.

With more than 182,000 University of Chicago alumni worldwide, the Polsky Center created the Alumni New Venture Challenge as a way of supporting any UChicago alum around the world who is in the process of launching a company. Alumni must apply and only the top teams will advance to Phase II where they will receive support and local programming in each region. Then, each region will host a semi-finals competition where judges will select the top teams that will advance to the global finals. The global finals will be held in Chicago—either in-person or virtually—on Thursday, May 6, 2021.

How to Apply

Applications for the 2021 Alumni New Venture Challenge are due on January 5, 2021. UChicago alumni who are interested in participating should review the application process and eligibility requirements on the Polsky Center website. Alumni are encouraged to watch both the info session and how to apply webinar recordings before submitting their online application. Alumni can submit their online applications here.

As one of the resources for supporting alumni with their ANVC application, the Polsky Center recently launched Polsky On Demand, a new online portal that provides access to some of Polsky’s world-class business and entrepreneurship workshops for free. The more than 80 videos included in this initial launch of Polsky On Demand represents more than 100 hours of digital content aimed at helping entrepreneurs gain the critical skills necessary to successfully launch and scale a startup.


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