Entrepreneurial Initiative Fund
Frequently Asked Questions
What is EIF?
The Tufts Entrepreneurial Initiative Fund (EIF) provides modest funding to individual students, teams or student clubs to support them in their entrepreneurial initiatives. Eligible funding requests are in the $100-$1000 range.
What is considered an "Entrepreneurial Initiative"?
There are two acceptable types of entrepreneurial initiatives:
- Programs, events, or initiatives that support students in developing an innovative and entrepreneurial mindset and skillset (e.g. conferences, hackathons, etc)
- Projects that support the exploration or development of a new venture (startup, small business, nonprofit)
Is EIF a competition?
No, EIF is not a competition. Applications are processed on a rolling basis through May1, 2023 or until all available funds have been distributed.
What is the typical grant size?
Typical grant sizes are between $100 and $1000.
How many grants do you plan to distribute?
We anticipate distributing 10-20 grants in the Spring semester.
Who is eligible for EIF?
EIF is designed for current students (undergraduate and graduate) at Tufts University only. You may apply on behalf of a student club (new or registered), or you may apply on behalf of yourself or your team.
What kinds of expenses are eligible for this program?
Eligible expenses fall into two categories:
- Expenses supporting programs, events, or initiatives that support students in developing an innovative and entrepreneurial mindset and skillset (e.g. conferences, hackathons, etc)
- Expenses supporting the exploration or development of a new venture (startup, small business, nonprofit)
How do you decide who is approved and for what check size?
Who is on the funding board?
The funding board is drawn from the faculty, staff and board of advisors of Derby Entrepreneurship Center at Tufts.
What are judges looking for in a successful application?
We are looking for three things in the applications: Team commitment, business fundamentals and progress, and whether you present a compelling case for your intended use-of-funds.
Successful applications present a coherent picture of their venture regarding where things stand and where things are going, and can make a strong case for why they need the money now and not later, and what the money will be used to propel the venture forward.
What level of detail do you expect for the detailed budget?
Successful budgets would include a minimum of the following on each itemized proposed expense.
- amount you are asking for ($XXX)
- category of expense (e.g. “Web hosting”)
- vendor name (e.g. “Wix”)
- quote (e.g. “$XXX / year for a one-year subscription”)
What are some examples of budget line items that are successful?
Common examples of budget line items that will do well include:
- $1,000 Google Ad Experiment ($500-1000 per experiment of 1 week durations)
- $99 Yoast Premium – 1 year subscription
What are some examples of budget line items that do not do well?
Common examples of budget line items that will not do well include:
- $1,000 for “Marketing” (You need to break it down into the actual costs. For example: $100 for the website, $299 for a 99 Design logo package, $100 for bus travel to New York and Back for primary market research… etc.)
What if we don’t receive the full amount?
If you don’t receive the full amount, you can apply again in a future semester.
What if I get into the Tufts Venture Accelerator – does having received an Entrepreneurial Initiative Fund award reduce my summer grant amount?
No, the summer funding per team is a separate process.
I still have questions, who do I call?
Book a meeting with Cody Damon.