The Kauffman Fellows Program, established in 1995, seeks to develop the next generation of venture capital investors by providing them with the skills, the network, and an enhanced awareness of their life’s mission and legacy in order to accept the mantle of leadership in an uncertain world.
Exceptional candidates will be offered acceptance into the Kauffman Fellows Program based on the strength of their nomination, application, recommendations, interviews, and due diligence we collect throughout the process.
|Applications for Class 25 are now closed. If you would like to be informed when the process for Class 25 opens, please complete an Inquiry Form.|
|Program Start Date|
|June 14th, 2020|
|In person: 7 Modules and 2 international summits; Held quarterly, each is ~4 days long in various locations. Outside Modules: You will be asked to actively participate in monthly Forum calls, engage with a mentor, and complete all required pre-work for each Module. We require 100% attendance which will entail making arrangements at work and at home to be able to fully participate in every session, approximately 40 days over 2 years.|
|$80,000 to be paid prior to the start of the program.|
|See Tuition & Fees|
|Application Deadline||Applications for Class 25 are now closed. If you would like to be informed when the process for Class 26 opens in Fall 2020, please complete an Interest Form|
|Program Start Date||TBA|
|Time Commitment||In person: 7 Modules and 2 international summits; Held quarterly, each is ~4 days long in various locations. Outside Modules: You will be asked to actively participate in monthly Forum calls, engage with a mentor, and complete all required pre-work for each Module. We require 100% attendance which will entail making arrangements at work and at home to be able to fully participate in every session, approximately 40 days over 2 years.|
|Tuition Fee||$80,000 to be paid prior to the start of the program.|
|Financial Support||See Tuition & Fees|
All selection decisions are made relative to the pool of applications we receive each year, but we look for candidates that are focused on having an outsized impact on their investing ecosystem and make a meaningful difference in the trajectory of the entrepreneurs they serve.
The best candidates will possess Kauffman Fellows core values such as integrity, resilience, humility, gratitude, and intellectual curiosity. They will also be willing to make not only a significant commitment of their time, but be willing to be vulnerable, authentic, and empathetic.
If you’re in a traditional venture (or investing) role:
Candidates must have a minimum of 1 year full-time investing experience, though 2-5 years is preferable. If applying from a first-time fund, your firm must have a significant first close.
The number of years as a full-time investor isn’t as important as the role you have played and your accomplishments - that number doesn’t tell the whole story. The number of deals you’ve led and the number of board seats you’ve held, however, gives us a general idea of your level of experience and knowledge you can share with the class.
If you’re not in a traditional venture role:
Venture capital investors will form the bulk of the class, but we purposefully design a class to include investors in a variety of fields such as private equity, family offices, accelerator funds, university funds, sovereign wealth funds, corporate venture, and angel networks.
How to apply
In order to access the application, our team must first receive a nomination or you may opt to self-nominate. Nominations may come from someone within the Kauffman Fellows Network (Fellows, Mentors, etc), or a supervisor or peer at another firm submit on your behalf.
If you opt to self-nominate, you follow the same process as a candidate that has received a third-party nomination, but forgo an additional data point by not including a nominator’s perspective. You will be able to use the button below to self-nominate. An application and instructions will be sent within 1-2 days.
All nominations are carefully reviewed and selected candidates will receive the online application link and further instructions via email. The application consists of application, two recommendations, and a $250 non-refundable application fee.
Two written recommendations from individuals other than your Nominator are required to complete the application. Recommendation forms are sent from the application portal, but it is your responsibility to ensure that forms are submitted in a timely manner. Applications cannot be considered until all documents have been received.
• If you are the most senior partner at your firm, please submit a recommendation from a peer at another firm or from a board member.
• If you are not the most senior partner at your firm, please submit a recommendation from your Managing Director or direct supervisor.
The second recommendation should be from an entrepreneur with whom you have worked closely. If you have questions about selecting recommenders, please contact Natasha Funk (firstname.lastname@example.org)
The written application only goes so far in portraying an accurate picture of who you are. There is much more we’d like to know about you—and you about us.
Candidates with strong applications will then be invited to participate in a series of interviews with Fellows - in person, when possible, or via online video. Interviews typically run 30-60 minutes.
Dates and Deadlines
Tuition for the 2-year program is $80,000 and due before the first Module. Tuition covers all modules, participation at 2 Summits, educational materials, group activities at modules, as well as breakfasts and lunches. Transportation and lodging are not included. Tuition is non-refundable and non-transferrable. Payment can be made by electronic bank wire transfer or check. Regrettably, we do not accept credit cards. Detailed payment information is included with the invoice Fellows receive upon acceptance to the program. Payment is due within 30 days of the invoice date, or upon receipt of the invoice if admission is within 60 days of the start of the Program. We recognize that the program is a significant financial commitment and Fellows generally meet the financial obligation with a combination of firm support and personal funds.
We offer a limited amount of needs-based scholarships that cover only a portion of the tuition fee. Entire scholarships are not offered. A scholarship application can be accessed after an application is entirely completed.
We expect candidates to make arrangements to fully cover tuition and expenses in case a scholarship is not granted.