Batten Venture Summer Internship Program

For students interested in entrepreneurship but not already committed to launching their own venture, Darden offers the Batten Venture Internship Program (BVIP).

This program provides Darden students the opportunity to pursue summer internships with venture capital firms and their portfolio companies. Students gain the experience of working for a VC firm or start-up, and companies benefit from having access to talented Darden MBA students for the summer.

To promote and support student involvement with these firms, the Batten Endowment provides a matching stipend to supplement a student’s summer salary.

BVIP Resources & Information   


Last Day for BVIP offers:   Friday 24 April

Paperwork Deadline to Career Development Center:  Friday 1 May

All Darden students are required to follow the BVIP 2014 Guidelines 


Student Guidelines

Students are asked to commit to the following: 

  • Work from approximately 1 June to 8 August. Vacations during this period may be negotiated with the company, with the ending or beginning date extended appropriately.
  • Perform any reasonable activity assigned by the company, recognizing that the company should make every effort to fully utilize the professional skills and graduate school experience that each student brings to the assignment.
  • Participate (with the company’s acceptance and support) in joint activities designed to support the educational process by facilitating the sharing of experiences.

Program Slots

Our program plans to support approximately 30 slots, expecting roughly a 50/50 mix of VC versus portfolio company slots. The slot is NOT committed until the student commits to accepting the offer from a qualifying company.

Student-Initiated Positions

Through their own networking, students may initiate their own BVIP opportunity. It should be with a VC, VC-backed or angel funded portfolio company.  Simply follow the company guidelines information and try to structure a meaningful internship along these lines. Each case will be evaluated on its merit, but we have always supported this type of proactive student effort. (Contact Jack Oakes in the CDC Office if you plan to go this route.) Our total slots are limited! 

With your resume we recommend a one-page cover letter submission that includes: 

  • Your passion for the world of entrepreneurship/venture capital;
  • Your experience and skills that relate to the world of entrepreneurship, venture capital, private equity;
  • Your understanding of, and experience in, the space/context in which the company operates or will operate;
  • Address your flexibility, your business analysis strengths, business development strengths, etc.;
  • Answer the question: why should this company hire you for this? 

You should submit your resume and cover letter through the CDC system as soon as the posting first appears. Resumes and cover letters will be sent to the companies each week.

Contact for questions

Typical BVIP Projects

Competitive Assessment 

Conduct value chain analysis for an industry/market. Conduct financial analysis of competitors, partners, and potential candidates. Research plans to combat competitors or create partnerships to strengthen the value chain.

Brand/Product Strategy 

Develop short and/or long term strategy for a brand in the marketplace. Analyze customer trends and identify key issues facing current and future business. Formulate an annual marketing plan. Generate ideas for product improvement and product mix strategies. Evaluate partnership opportunities.

Operational Analysis 

Review existing operational structures, functional overlap and integration, best practices. Provide recommendations for improving and streamlining operational processes and systems.

Planning and Analysis Development 

Perform project analyses and investment assessments to support growth activities. Conduct industry research, best practices, internal and external financial analysis, and decision analysis.

Market Strategy 

Analyze market trends, needs and structure. Identify emerging opportunities and/or underserved markets.

Management Function Analysis 

Evaluate existing systems and processes in support of both system and management structures. Provide recommendations for improving processes and systems to enhance management functions

Finance function analysis 

Evaluate existing financial models, reporting, and packages. Provide recommendations for redesigning models, tools, processes, and systems. Work with investors and management to create enhanced reporting strategies to support both internal and external strategic goals.

Business Plan Preparation and Review 

Create templates and assist company management in writing executive summary, full business plans, and appendices; develop marketing materials to send to prospective investors, develop targets of opportunity.

Video Overview

Below, watch YouTube video of Philippe Sommer, Director of the Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership, discussing the BVIP.

Student Experience Video

Stephanie Yeung (MBA Class of 2012) discusses her participation in the Batten Internship Venture Program during the summer of 2011.

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