What is mystartupXX
The mission of mystartupXX is to nurture the next generation of female founders and female-led technology companies through mentorship, education and funding.
The mystartupXX program is a one-of-its-kind accelerator that was created to increase and encourage female entrepreneurship. Participants take part in mystartupXX workshops focused on various aspects of launching startups - team building, leadership, performing a market assessment and obtaining customers' feedback, creating a value proposition, validating business models, and understanding financing strategies needed to launch the business. Each startup works with a mentor and meet regularly with advisors to monitor and encourage their progress.
Why is it important to support female entrepreneurship?
“With nearly half of the workforce and more than half of our college students now being women, their lag in building high-growth firms has become a major economic deficit. The nation has fewer jobs—and less strength in emerging industries—than it could if women’s entrepreneurship were on par with men’s. Women capable of starting growth companies may well be our greatest under-utilized economic resource.” Mitchell, L. Overcoming the Gender Gap: Women Entrepreneurs As Economic Drivers, Kauffman Foundation 2011
Funding from venture capitalists (VCs) is a huge challenge for women because only approximately four percent of VCs are female, which inherently gives males an advantage when requesting and receiving funding. The mystartupXX program helps connect female students with potential investors to get their foot in the door and prepares them for investor meetings. Similarly, mentorship and networking are challenges because of the small pool of successful females who have started and run a tech-based company. The mystartupXX program provides mentorship for our students, creating an ever-growing community of female founders to support and network with one another.
Who can participate?
The program is open to all UC San Diego undergraduate, graduate, and postdoctoral female students and female-led teams with a business idea. A prototype is not required at the time of application.
The applicant has to be willing to be the team leader. A team is not required at the time of application. The team leader will receive assistance with the team building process. The team may consist of male and female members.
If selected, the applicant has to be able to participate in all program activities and events, attend meetings with mentor(s), provide project updates and present at the mystartupXX demo.
What does mystartupXX provide?
- Pre-seed Funding and prototype development support.
- Participation in workshops and education programs focused on building a company.
- Co-working space to meet with team members and develop strategies.
- Invitation to mystartupXX networking events focused on building and expanding their networks of supporters and like-minded individuals.
- Focused mentoring and one to one coaching throughout the program.
- Membership in the mystartupXX alumni organization focused on building a global network of female innovators, influencers and leaders of technology companies.
- All applicants will be invited to the mystartupXX demo, where the mystartupXX teams will present their ideas to program supporters, gain access to potential investors and receive valuable feedback for next steps.
"Kim Davis King and Lada Rasochova, two of the mystartupXX mentors, helped us refine our pitch and gave us some good feedback about questions the judges might possibly ask. We value the input we get from the whole mystartupXX group – it's a network of women working on diverse projects who we can learn from." – Delara Fadavi (Jacobs School of Engineering, BS ’15), Co-Founder & CEO, Meego Tech