New Founderships Programme for 2021

Applications for the Founderships Programme 2021 are now open!

We are pleased to announce the return of our annual Founderships programme this year. Funded by the University of Surrey’s Student Enterprise and Santander, the programme will give entrepreneurs £1,000 – 3,000 in funding they need to work full-time on their businesses this summer.

As part of the programme, we will be offering two Founderships specifically for black founders (black students and recent graduates (within 2 years) and those with mixed black heritage). Between 2009 and 2019, just 0.24% of venture capital went to teams of black entrepreneurs, showing the barriers these businesses face in gaining financial support (

We want to challenge the inequalities faced by black founders, by helping to create a more inclusive business community on campus and for the future.

There are several opportunities available, including the 2 protected opportunities for black founders, and winners will be announced at our end of year awards event on Friday 11th June!

Those whose pitches impressed the judges most will secure a place on the Founderships’ programme this summer and benefit from:

  • A dedicated mentor from one of the 20 business experts in our Student Enterprise network.
  • 2 x online, interactive group development sessions delivered by Career Invest all about personal branding, career confidence and inclusive leadership.

The workshops, which incorporate a theme of diversity and inclusivity are aimed at helping you develop as a business person and entrepreneur.

Who is suitable?

This programme is suited to anyone with a tested business idea who has a clear roadmap to success and are committed to developing their idea this summer.

How can I apply?

To sign up, follow this link and tell us what your business goals are for the summer, what you plan to spend your time on if you are successful and how you will advance your business from where you are now to where you want it to be.

Successful applicants will be invited to a pitch practice session on the 19th of May and will need to submit a 5 min video pitch by the 21st of May.

Submit your initial application here.