The class will be attended by two groups: Russian entrepreneurs and Stanford students. There will be 20 selected Stanford students attending the class alongside 5 selected Russian entrepreneurs. The 20 Stanford students that we recruit will form 5 groups of 4. They will then be matched with the 5 Russian entrepreneurs according to their interests and skill set.
You, the Russian entrepreneur, will be expected to meet with the 4 Stanford students in the group at least once a week online, and collaborate with them in working on your idea. All the members of the group and the organizers of the class will sign non-disclosure agreements before the beginning of the class. The class is structured so that it trains you and your group to take an initial business idea and convert it into a solidified business plan. The objective is to create a marketable product that will end with a final pitch to a panel of Venture Capitalists. You will have the opportunity to listen and interact with successful entrepreneurs and Venture Capitalists from the Silicon Valley, and professors from the GSB and Law School. Last but not least, the opportunity to get your idea funded by a Silicon Valley Venture Capitalist.
The weekly meeting will be formatted in the following manner: 70% of the time will be spent listening to a lecture given by the speaker and 30% engaging in an active conversation with the speaker and with each other. The lectures are scheduled on Tuesday, from 7:15pm to 8:05pm so attendance is not mandatory. However, all the lectures will be filmed and you will be responsible for watching them the same day. You are also expected to comment on the lecture by means of an online blog created for the class. This is meant to be an exchange of opinions with the Stanford students regarding the relevance of the class.
We expect every entrepreneur we select to dedicate their time to participating in the class, working on their product and preparing for their final pitch to the Venture Capitalist panel. If any of the selected entrepreneurs does not submit high-quality and thoughtful work throughout the class, they will be withdrawn from the program and will not be able to travel to Stanford to pitch their idea. This is a highly competitive, unique opportunity. If you are not willing to devote the time and effort necessary for the success of your project, please refrain from applying. Failure to abide by the aforementioned policies will result in immediate termination from the class.
Good Luck with the Application!
Chris, Anda, Pawel and Mikael (MS&E 72SI teaching assistants)