The startAD Youth Entrepreneurship Program actively encourages and practically supports entrepreneurship and innovation endeavors among UAE youth. The 3-month-long program targets university students between the ages of 18-25 with an idea for a (tech-enabled) startup. The program primarily focuses on teaching select teams the tools and skill sets to develop a startup that is scalable, repeatable and capital-efficient through a highly customized training and mentorship process. The initiative also offers teams that are ready to do so, opportunities to drive partnerships with leading institutions supporting the program .
Who should apply?
- Idea stage
- Must be tech-enabled
- Must not have received prior funding of more than USD 10,000 (for existing projects)
- Submission of Initial write-up/pitch deck as a supporting document (optional)
- Must reside in the UAE
- Between the age of 18-25
- A team (of 2-4 members) is preferred
- Demonstrable passion to the problem that the startup hopes to solve. Availability to attend ALL program activities
- Learn to apply a business framework to ideas
- Align solutions with the actual customer needs, and learn how to prototype
- Validate business models and discover future market opportunities
- Work with startup coaches from leading institutions (NYU Tandon School of Engineering & NYU Entrepreneurship Institute)
- Benefit from a dedicated 1-1 mentorship with serial entrepreneurs and industry experts
- Learn transferable soft skills (building the entrepreneurial persona)
- Cash prize: $5000 startAD award to top 3 teams. $10,000 ‘National Impact Award’ from Sandooq Al Watan for the top team in the program
- Perks: Food. Transportation & accommodation based on individual need basis. Access to startAD Central co-working space and Al-Warsha (prototyping lab)
- Submit an application: This is mandatory to be considered to the program. Only one application per team is required.
- Complete an interview: Applicants that make a strong case in their applications will be invited to an interview.
- Attend bootcamps and workshops: An array of topics will be covered including design thinking & ideation, prototyping, and building the entrepreneurial persona.
- Pick a mentor: Participants will benefit from an added value of working with a personal mentor to provide extra support.
- Complete mid-way program check-in: Report on progress. Receive detailed feedback. Plan for the reminder of the program.
- Present at the Startup Showcase: Pitching opportunity in front of a panel of judges and a public audience.
NYU Entrepreneurial Institute at New York University
Specialist in Small Business Growth
General Manager of Digital Future Lab
NYU Tandon School of Engineering