Entrepreneurial Initiative Fund

Rules of Engagement

Eligibility requirements – Applicants

  • Applicants must have at least one actively participating executive or founding team member who is a matriculated Tufts undergraduate or graduate student
  • Applicants must not have raised more than $250,000 combined in grants, fellowships, convertible notes, SAFE notes, equity-based financing or other funding sources at the time of application
  • Applicants must commit to working on their project within the 3 month period after receiving the award
  • Applicants must commit to making contact with their designated mentor at least twice during the 3 month period after receiving the award


Eligible 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)


Eligible expense examples

  • Software / web hosting / no code platform costs such as Zendesk, Squarespace / Wix, Airtable
  • Digital marketing costs such as Google Ads, Facebook Ads, Instagram Ads
  • Travel and lodging costs for primary market research such as bus tickets from Boston to New York
  • Prototyping costs
  • Staffing costs for consultants, interns and temporary labor (specify rate & number of hours)
  • Shipping and handling
  • Office supplies
  • Marketing assets
  • Shipping and handling
  • Logo apparel and other SWAG items


Selection criteria and grant size decisions

  • Selection criteria and grant size decisions are based on the funding committee’s assessment of whether or not the team presented a compelling case for the use of funds on activities and expenditures that are appropriate and relevant for the stage of development of the venture.
  • Awards will be distributed if and only if the committee believes the award will make a significant and positive impact on their progress and traction at the time of the award grant. Projected expenses are anticipated to be incurred within 3 months of the award grant.


Prize Money and Tax Implications

  • Check vouchers will be written to the lead contact of winning teams as listed on their application.
  • It is the responsibility of the team to determine how the prize money will be used or distributed among team members.
  • All payments are considered income and are therefore taxable. Non-U.S. citizens are typically subject to tax withholding from any money they receive. We are not able to provide tax guidance – please plan accordingly.