3 tips to make your VC University scholarship application stand out

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Becoming a successful VC investor is incredibly challenging –  especially for people from underrepresented and underestimated backgrounds – which is why VC University offers a robust scholarship program for those aspiring VCs.

The scholarship covers the cost of course tuition, includes dedicated office hours, and provides access to a curated, three-month mentorship program.

In this blog post, we’ll share advice to help you create an outstanding VC University scholarship application. Let’s dive in!

1. Make sure you’re a fit.

Before you apply for a scholarship, take a second to review the criteria to make sure this opportunity is right for you:

  • Aspiring or early-career VC: You must be able to show that you’re committed to pursuing a career as a VC investor (if not currently, then in the near future). It’s not a detriment if you haven’t gotten into VC yet, as long as you can show it’s something you’re actively, concretely working towards.If your VC career goals are many years down the line, if you’re pursuing a non-investing role (e.g. as a lawyer at a VC firm), or if VC is just something you think you might be interested in – you won’t be a strong fit for the scholarship at this time.


  • Underrepresented background: We take an open and intersectional approach to representation; we consider race/ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, geography, veteran status, and more. Show us that you come from a background or community that’s underrepresented in VC and demonstrate your commitment to supporting others in that same position.


  • Would meaningfully benefit: We want to ensure the scholarship supports those who would benefit most. Show us how participating in VC University would tangibly support your professional goals, and that it would be challenging to do without a scholarship.


  • Based in the U.S.: For now, the scholarship is only open to candidates who reside in the U.S., intend to stay in the U.S. and intend to invest domestically. It’s OK if you hope to invest domestically and internationally – but you will not be a strong fit for the scholarship if your primary intent is to invest outside the U.S.


2. Be direct and concise.

The application has several short-answer questions (viewable here), and we review hundreds of applications for every cohort. That’s a lot of reading! To stand out, keep your answers direct and to the point. Concise and clear answers are much stronger than long, rambling answers.

3. Demonstrate your alignment.

Your scholarship application should demonstrate your clear alignment with the criteria, including your intent to pursue a career as a VC.

If you haven’t gotten your first role in VC yet, participation in demo days, pitch events, relevant clubs or organizations, or even volunteer work can all be used to show your career aspirations! You can use the question “Do you participate in any community-building / volunteer / mentorship / public service activities?” as an opportunity to let your ambitions shine through.

. . .

The application process is the exact same for the General Track and the Life Science Scholarship (LSS) Track. For the full requirements and criteria, visit the VC University Scholarship page.

The scholarship application for Cohort 13 is open from March 14-24.

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