Darden’s experiential programs for entrepreneurs include a business incubator, funded internships, innovative hands-on courses, competitions and intensive “bootcamps” designed for students interested in topics such as venture capital, start-ups, and health care-related ventures. Learn more below:
The i.Lab Incubator provides support for Darden MBA student entrepreneurs who are interested in developing early-stage business ventures by providing them with $10,000 in funding, faculty and student support, office space, access to technological expertise and free legal services.
Darden provides MBA students multiple opportunities to pitch their businesses ideas to investors, peers, faculty, alumni, business leaders and the broader UVA entrepreneurial ecosystem through a series of entrepreneurship competitions.
Batten Venture Internship Program
The Batten Venture Internship Program (BVIP) subsidizes summer internships for students interested in working at a venture capital, start-up, or small-scale business organizations. Companies benefit from having access to MBA talent for the summer, and Darden students have an opportunity to experience the venture capital or small-scale side of entrepreneurship first-hand.
Darden's Entrepreneurship Conference is an annual event bringing together Darden students, alumni and community entrepreneurs to share their experiences building businesses and enthusiasm for entrepreneurship.
Entrepreneurship & Venture Capital Club (EVC)
The Entrepreneurship & Venture Capital Club at Darden (EVC) serves students and alumni who are interested in starting and/or investing in early-stage companies. By hosting networking events, speakers, educational seminars, competitions and other events, the EVC Club provides multiple opportunities to learn and become involved in the entrepreneurial community at Darden, in Charlottesville and beyond.
Darden Venturing Projects
Darden Venturing Projects are for-credit projects that challenge students to develop their own business ideas into proposals for new businesses. These projects generally include feasibility analysis and a plan for the venture’s development and funding.
Innovation and the Design Experience
The “Innovation and Design Experience” course examines how design thinking and innovation principles can be used to enhance the value and accelerate the development of business opportunities that deliver organic growth. View other entrepreneurship courses.
The “Technology Accelerator” course brings together students from Darden and other UVA schools to collaborate in identifying market needs, finding technologies (in the broad sense of the term, not just IT) appropriate to address those needs, and developing a business plan. View other entrepreneurship courses.
Venture Capital Bootcamp
Darden's Venture Capital Bootcamp is an intensive two-and-a-half day workshop for highly motivated MBA students interested in careers in venture capital and entrepreneurship.
Plug and Play Tech Center Incubator Program
The Darden School is a University Partner of Plug and Play Tech Center, a business accelerator headquartered in Sunnyvale, CA that specializes in growing tech startups. Plug and Play’s global network includes 300+ tech startups, 180+ investors and a community of leading universities and corporate partners. From unique industry networking events, education and immersion programs to M&A, Plug and Play helps startups get organized, connect and grow. Darden students and alumni can apply to participate in the Silicon Valley incubator program.
Partnership With 1776 Incubator
Darden now partners with the 1776 Incubator in Washington, D.C. Working with 1776, Darden provides educational opportunities — workshops, lunch-and-learn sessions and mentoring sessions — from expert entrepreneurs and direct engagement with D.C.’s unique entrepreneurial ecosystem.