BUILD and LAUNCH Summer Accelerators

BUILD and LAUNCH Summer Accelerators

BUILD and LAUNCH Accelerators

The initial Polsky Center Summer Accelerator launched in June 2012 to give student teams the opportunity to work intensively and solely on their businesses and social enterprises in a collaborative and dynamic environment over the summer.

In June 2021, the program launched two tracks to better suit the needs of different stage teams.

The BUILD Accelerator

The BUILD Accelerator allows students to spend their summer building the key elements of their venture, and validating assumptions around their market or customers.

The LAUNCH Accelerator

The LAUNCH Accelerator allows students to spend their summer fundraising for their venture, selling, and gaining/maintaining momentum.

Key Info


Application deadline:
April 4, 2022 at 10 a.m. CDT.

Both accelerators accept teams to participate through a competitive selection process. All applications will be reviewed by committee with consideration given to stage of business, strength of the team and business idea, potential for growth during the summer, and current and past affiliation with the University of Chicago and its entrepreneurship programs. These teams receive funding, coaching from Polsky Center staff, mentorship from alumni entrepreneurs and Chicago-area investors, and weekly programming designed to help them overcome many of the hurdles to launching a business. By talking with consumers, investors, and mentors, building prototypes, and continually refining their business models, these start-ups make notable progress over the course of the program and in many cases move from business plan to launch.

Looking for a team? Seeking your final teammates?

We've got you covered.

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