We believe entrepreneurship needs to reflect the direction of a global society increasingly dependent on innovations to address urgent complex needs and on developing young entrepreneurs who want to bring those innovations to markets.
As the oldest business school in Washington, DC, AU and the Kogod School of Business began teaching entrepreneurship classes in the 1980s and today has more than 300 students enrolled every year in some form of entrepreneurship class. In September 2014,we launched the AU Entrepreneurship Incubator, the Entrepreneurship Advisory Council, initial funding for the Entrepreneurship Venture Fund and the admission of our first five ventures. Today, the incubator is home to more than 20 ventures and has relocated to the new Don Myers Technology & Innovation Building.
The AU Entrepreneurship Incubator is a 2,000-square-foot facility on the second floor of the Don Myers Technology Center on the East Campus. It is housed within the AU Center for Innovation and serves as the center of entrepreneurial activity at American University. Funded by the Kogod School of Business, the incubator is available 24 x 7 to approved student ventures from any AU undergraduate or graduate program and to recent graduates. The incubator offers open table workspaces, a large pitch room with expansive AV systems, a small private conference room, a print center, kitchen, and multiple screens and monitors for video conferences or media review. Incubator teams also gain access to faculty, alumni and industry mentors, sources of legal guidance, other interested students with a variety of important complimentary skills, and public events to showcase your venture.
Creating Opportunities Through the Incubator
The AU Incubator programs are designed by entrepreneurs for entrepreneurs. They focus on helping our ventures prepare themselves for developing and interacting with diverse networks in the AU and greater DC communities. From strategic consulting to branding, communication and creating opportunities to bring your idea to influencers and investors, the incubator serves as a place to learn, grow and develop from ideas to business models to successful revenue generating ventures.
Networking brings you in touch with faculty, alumni and entrepreneurship programs, with the community of other student entrepreneurs on campus and with connections in the booming DC-Virgina-Maryland entrepreneurship corridor. We help you find and reach the people and resources you need for your venture.
The incubator conducts regularly schedule workshops every semester for ventures. These range from customer validation and lean startup sessions to legal considerations, forecasting and branding. Workshops are taught by faculty and other outside experts.
Pitch Days & Competitions
As a startup you need to learn to pitch your venture in many ways, from the 30-second elevator pitch to formal investor presentations. We schedule several opportunities every year for incubator ventures to showcase their ideas and present their ventures to outside investors and other entrepreneurs.
Situated at the center of business, policy and governance, AU, the Kogod School of Business and the AU Innovation Center offer a range of speakers on entrepreneurship, market issues and opportunities, finance and investment. Other opportunities are widely available in the DC corridor through meet ups, mashups and intercollegiate events.