FORGE Sparks Entrepreneurial Journey with Student Startup Residency Grants

Jan. 23, 2024
Student Startup Residency Grants

In a move to grow and support the entrepreneurial spirit among University of Arizona students, FORGE proudly announces the opening of applications for FORGE Student Startup Residency grants. This initiative invites students with venture concepts in Biomedical, Semiconductor Manufacturing, and/or AI industry areas to participate in an intensive 8-week Summer 'Startup Bootcamp.'  Students can be awarded up to $5,600 for taking part in the bootcamp program and can earn additional funds as student Entrepreneurs in Residence.  All students who wish to apply must register for a preliminary info session. 

Unleashing Potential: FORGE Student Startup Residency

The FORGE Student Startup Residency is a significant expansion of the prior Biomedical Student Entrepreneur program. This Residency provides a valuable opportunity for students to bring startup concepts to life while developing critical entrepreneurial mindset skills. Open to University of Arizona students graduating in May 2025 or later, the program offers a substantial entrepreneurial training grant as part of the bootcamp. This immersive program includes expert mentoring, notable guest speakers, and opportunities to pitch to experienced investors.  The Startup Residency offers financial support, experiential learning opportunities, and important professional development for students interested in developing unique concepts to solve challenges in the Biomedical, Semiconductor Manufacturing, and/or AI industry areas.

Key Program Details:

  • Eligibility: Open to enrolled University of Arizona undergraduate and graduate students graduating in May 2025 or later. Up to 30 students will be selected.
  • Startup Concepts: Biomedical, Semiconductor Manufacturing, and/or Artificial Intelligence vertical market.
  • Venture Dossier: Students must submit a 'venture dossier' consisting of a résumé, startup concept pitch slide, market assessment, and competitive analysis.
  • Grant Award: All students receive a total of $4000 upon completion of 4 program milestones. Graduate students also receive an additional $1600 for leading and mentoring a team of 4 undergraduate students.
  • Live Pitch: The bootcamp culminates in a live pitch to a panel of angels and VCs, providing students with extraordinary insight and real-world experience.

Information Sessions and Application Deadline:

To apply, interested students must attend a one-hour online program information session.  Information sessions will be held on February 12, 14, 21, 22 and 25.  Application information and application links will be provided at these sessions.

Applications are due by 11:59pm MST on March 22, 2024. 

Generous Support from Alumni and Community Organizations

The grant and residency program for biomedical startups is made possible thanks to the generosity of a long-time supporter and alum of the University of Arizona, Harry Wilcox. Wilcox, a Special Partner at Flagship Pioneering, has a rich history in venture capital, life sciences, and sustainability.  The expansion of the program into Semiconductor Manufacturing and/or AI industry areas concepts was made possible through the support of the Arizona Commerce Authority and assistance from Dr. Liesl Folks, Director of the Center for Semiconductor Manufacturing at the University of Arizona.

Embark on the Entrepreneurial Journey

The FORGE Student Startup Residency isn't just a program; it's a journey of growth, learning, and transformation. As a Student Startup Resident, participants who complete the bootcamp will have the opportunity to apply for paid Fall Entrepreneurs in Residence positions, providing them with hands-on experience and further exposure to the world of angel and VC investing.

For more information, including program FAQs and registration for information sessions, visit For specific inquiries about the program, please contact