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Startup Hokies Accelerator

Working on an idea or a new product and serious about building a company?  The Startup Hokies accelerator is for you!

About this program

The Startup Hokies Accelerator is an 8-week cohort-styled experiential program that puts student entrepreneurs into an environment that builds teams, engages prospective customers and launches new business concepts. Offered during the fall and spring semesters.

Deadline for fall applications is Sunday, August 9, 2020 at 11:59 PM*.  Apply today!

*Note: The fall 2020 accelerator program will be offered in a completely virtual environment.

Program overview

The Startup accelerator program, which runs every fall and spring semester, guides student startup teams through an 8-week cohort-styled process of assessing opportunities, building effective teams, and launching new ventures through workshops, mentorship, and funding. The accelerator provides an intensive, experience-driven learning opportunity for students who possess a strong desire to build and launch a new venture. 

Accelerator cohort startups are paired with Venture Mentors, attend weekly required events, and receive guided access to various programs and events led by the Apex Center. All accelerator cohort startups present at a Demo Day event at the completion of the program.

The Apex Center faculty and Venture Mentors work hand-in-hand to help cohort companies:

  • Get started and build a minimum viable product (MVP)
  • Startup legal basics
  • Build a team
  • Business model & overall concept feasibility
  • Launch and marketing
  • Fundraising, Investment, and KPI’s
  • How to pitch your opportunity

Program details

Benefits for Teams

In addition to non-dilutive capital, accelerator cohort companies may receive the following:

  • Membership and free credits in the Amazon Web Services (AWS) Activate program
  • Pro bono legal services (no cost advice from experts on corporate structure & documentation)
  • Pro bono accounting services (no cost advice on corporate accounting setup)
  • Access to angel investment & venture capital networks
  • Mentorship from alumni-entrepreneurs
  • Talent acquisition/recruiting services of co-founders and team members
  • Equity-free grants ranging from $500 to $1,500



Startups can receive between $500 and $1,500 in equity-free grants. The amount awarded will be determined by a committee of Apex Center personnel based on how the team progresses through accelerator program milestones.

Program Structure

The cohort programming varies between dedicated team meetings, group workshops, and one-on-one development sessions. In addition to the regular modules guided by local experts and the Apex Center faculty, each team will receive one-on-one coaching from Entrepreneurs in Residence (EIRs) and will be guided by a team of Venture Mentors. These EIRs & Mentors are proven entrepreneurs assigned to each cohort team based on the specific focus and stage of the startup. The team must commit to attending all required programs and meetings during the 8-week accelerator with an average frequency of two required sessions per week.


Who Qualifies?

Any student team with a Virginia Tech team member qualifies for funding and participation. At least one team member must be a current Virginia Tech Undergraduate or Graduate student from any Virginia Tech college, institute or program.


Fall 2020 Apex Accelerator Application:

  • Applications are closed at this time.  Follow us on social media (@ApexCenterVT) for Spring ’21 application information
  • NOTE: The Fall 2020 Apex Accelerator program will operate in a completely virtual environment
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Upcoming Events › Accelerator

November 2020

Demo Day – Startup Hokies accelerator

November 11 @ 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Startup Hokies

Join us for our 1st inaugural Demo Day of the Startup Hokies accelerator Meet some of the most promising student-led startups at Virginia Tech and see what's being launched in Blacksburg!

Find out more »
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Application & Timeline

Meet the Fall ’20 cohort teams

Application Opens | July 15, 2020

Q&A Sessions | July 29 and August 5 at 7 PM EDT

Application Deadline | August 9, 2020 at 11:59 PM EDT

Finalist Interviews | August 13-18, 2020

Acceptance Notifications | August 19, 2020

Accelerator Kickoff | September 2, 2020

Demo Day | November 13, 2020

Startup Hokies

Program Sponsors

1901 Group, Grant Thornton, Woods Rogers Attorneys at Law, Silicon Valley Bank
AWS for Startups
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