Stillman School of Business

Center of Innovation and Entrepreneurship Holds Fourth Annual Pirates LaunchPad Summer Accelerator Program  

Pirates LaunchPad Summer Accelerator Program

SHU student entrepreneurs invited to apply to Pirates LaunchPad Summer Accelerator and earn $2K.

Do you have a business startup idea that you are serious about pursuing and turning into a real business? Have you already launched a startup and are seeking assistance to propel your venture to the next level? Have you competed in startup contests, and seek further guidance? Are you focused on a social or community problem and are working on an innovative startup business solution?

If you answered "Yes" to any of those questions, Pirates LaunchPad may be right for you. The Center of Innovation and Entrepreneurship invites all Seton Hall University students to apply to participate in the fourth annual Pirates LaunchPad Summer Accelerator Program and earn up to $2,000 in investment seed funding for their venture.

Pirates LaunchPad employs lean startup methodology to help student entrepreneurs make progress on their startup business models during an eight-week summer program. Students will convene weekly on Friday mornings in June and July for virtual group meetings with entrepreneurship faculty and guest speakers. Participants will also receive additional individualized coaching sessions with successful alumni entrepreneurs.

There is no cost for students to attend, but space is limited.

Who is Eligible: Open to all Seton Hall students who are already working on a startup business model, or have launched a startup, and are willing to set business goals and work to meet them during the program. Students can apply as solopreneurs, or in teams of up to four students. Student entrepreneurs that successfully complete the program will be eligible for seed funding stipends of up to $2,000 for each venture.

When: Friday, June 2, 2023 to Friday July 28, 2023 (Except Friday June 30.) 

How To Apply: Eight student startup teams will be accepted for the 2023 cohort. The application process includes an interview with the Director of the Center of Innovation and Entrepreneurship, and completing an application form.

Deadline to Express Interest: Students must contact Susan Scherreik, Founding Director, Center of Innovation and Entrepreneurship, no later than Friday, May 26, 2023 at [email protected].

Student teams participating in the venture accelerator will receive:

  • A seed funding stipend of up to $2,000 upon successful completion of Pirates LaunchPad.
  • Ongoing advising with venture mentors.
  • Access to skills building entrepreneurship workshops, prototyping tools, and other useful resources.
  • Access to the Center of Innovation and Entrepreneurship’s network of successful alumni entrepreneurs.

What Pirates LaunchPad Accelerator graduates say about the program:

Carina Castagna

Carina Castagna, ‘21/M.P.A. ’22, launched her startup business, Pesto Joe, during the Pirates LaunchPad Summer Accelerator Program.

"The Pirate Accelerator gave me the tools and the support to launch Pesto Joe LLC, which was barely an idea when I initially signed up. Following the program, I was able to complete a proof of concept at local farmers markets and quickly gained a following. That was when I knew I had a viable business. I took the following months to learn about the food industry, build my network, and attain my food handler’s certificate.

Pesto Joe became an LLC in December 2022, just a few months after the accelerator. It is crazy to look back and remember where I was a year ago, I simply had an idea, and I am already leaps and bounds ahead of where I was when I started the accelerator. I am currently preparing for a busy farmers market season and I already have my first wholesale deal! Nothing can stop a Pirate when they are on a mission, and I am grateful for the accelerator for pointing me in the right direction!" - Carina Castagna,  ‘21/M.P.A. ‘22, founder & CEO, Pesto Joe.

"Pirates Launchpad provides a great network and formula to turn your ideas into reality. Some students join the program with a full business and others with nothing but an idea. There have already been several success stories from my class alone.  The seed funding has gone into filing my Elite Arts LLC’s annual report, accountant, website maintenance, and now designing a new website."
- Darren Mattos, ’22 B.S. Diplomacy and International Relations, SHU Law School student and founder, Elite Arts, an arts brokerage business. 

"My goal when I entered Pirates LaunchPad was to expand my existing online business, including revamping my website. I was able to accomplish these goals and more." - Jerry Ford, Stillman sophomore pursuing the entrepreneurship concentration and founder of  Streetwear Authenticity.  

Categories: Business, Education

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