E@DU Grant Process

Grant Phase 2: Creation

Phase 2: Creation

Funds Available: Up to $1,000 to extend the development of the MVP that was created and tested in Phase 1 or that was already developed if grantee skipped Phase 1. 

Application Dates:  Open from September 1 through May 1 of each academic year 

Closing Date:  No closing date if progress is being made and regular mentor meetings are being reported. Grant will be closed if the faculty mentor meets with student entrepreneur and shares that progress has halted. 

Application Materials: 3-5 minute video “pitch” including the following elements from Phase 1 : 

Video Application (If new application) or IN PERSON meeting if moving from Phase 1 to 2 

    • Who is the entrepreneur and why are you the right person to tackle this problem/opportunity? 
      • Explore the evidence discovered in Phase 1 or pre-Phase 2 process 
      • If completed Phase 1: How did your understanding of the problem evolve as you progressed through Phase 1? What is the problem/opportunity and why is this the right problem to solve?
    • Discuss the market, competitive landscape and the validation you have already done to support that this is the right time to start this idea.
    • Outline 2–4 concrete, measurable goals that are to be achieved during the grant period, timeline for achieving the goals, planned expenditure dates, and itemized budget for the up to $1,000 grant funding.
    • *Goals should reflect plans to turn the MVP into a market-ready product/service*
    • Communicate how the successful completion of this Phase 2 of the grant process will help you be ready for Phase 3 of the Grant Process.

MS Word E@DU Proposal Document to include:

    • Goals and timeline for the achievement of each goal 
    • Measurable outcomes to be achieved 
    • Budget with intended purchase amounts and dates 

List of 2-3 mentors that have agreed to support the grant process and proposed schedule to meet with mentors to support goals outlined above. 

    Rationale: Students have worked through the idea for Phase 1 of the grant process at DU and now need funding and support to develop the product for the market.  


      • Set measurable goals and a schedule by which to meet them 
      • Establish a bi-weekly meeting schedule with one of the faculty advisors based on Faculty availability/expertise (at the outset, Ross, Sebesta, or Pollard).  Meeting should be a standing meeting set and ideally hosted in person but could be by Zoom. 
        • Before each bi-weekly meeting a set of “notes” to guide the meeting should be uploaded to Teams folder.  Notes to include: 
          • Progress made on conversation/goals from last Faculty Mentor meeting 
          • Outside mentor discussions and value added by them 
          • Plans for the next 2-week period 
        • At bi-weekly meetings discuss successes and challenges outlined in notes document. Discuss previous 2-week progress and overall grant progress.  Discuss budget allocation, expenditures, resource usage, goals/actions for the next 2 week period. 
        • When appropriate how this grant can start to position the idea/team for Phase 3 of the grant and anything else necessary to advance and complete the project successfully. 

      Intended Outcomes: When Phase 2 Grants are complete, there will be objective evidence of: 

      • Approaching Market Readiness–product/service evolved from the MVP in a measurable and meaningful way. Product version 1 is ready for meaningful longer-term market testing or sales to end consumer.
      • Go-to-market and marketing strategy outlined and elements put in place (D2C, wholesale/retail, or other established and developed; pricing strategy established with rationale; promotional strategy; measurement metrics; etc.) 
      • Major vendor relationships established (Accounts set up, evaluation of competing vendors, etc.) 
      • Business logistics beginning to be established–  
          • LLC established 
          • EIN established 
          • Business bank account 
          • Social media and URL acquired 
          • General Liability Insurance obtained or at minimum quoted 
          • Cost of production understood 

                  Requirements to get to Phase 3: Objective evidence that Phase 2 intended outcomes are complete and there is a plan for commercialization in Phase 3.