The Skandalaris Center for Interdisciplinary Innovation and Entrepreneurship is the place on campus Where Creative Minds Connect.
The Skandalaris Center aims to inspire and develop creativity, innovation and entrepreneurship at Washington University in St. Louis.
Who We Serve
Our initiatives serve all Washington University students, alumni, faculty, and staff and sometimes the community. We call this the SC Network.
Our initiatives are divided into three parts:
A great way to get started in creativity, innovation and entrepreneurship at Washington University is to get connected with peers and various resources:
Join a Student Group or Fellowship
There are 14 student organizations committed to various aspects of creativity, innovation and entrepreneurship. Some are limited to undergraduate or graduate student participation, and some support all.
Visit our Student Organizations webpage.
Join the Skandalaris Center Email List
The email newsletter is the most up-to-date and complete record of upcoming opportunities.
The Skandalaris Center offers many programs that provide real-world, practical training in creativity, innovation and entrepreneurship. Below are a few program examples:
Pre-Orientation: Startup WU
Startup WU is the Skandalaris Center's pre-orientation program for incoming first-year students. The program takes place each year on the Sunday-Thursday in August before the start of classes. It allows innovative students to experience an accelerated process of building an idea into a venture. Students will also be acquainted with the Skandalaris Center and the St. Louis startup community. All majors are welcome.
Summer Entrepreneurial Internship Program
This 10-week summer program offers undergraduate students in any school the opportunity to experience entrepreneurship in a real-world setting through a paid internship at an early stage startup. Students work at their ventures Monday through Thursday; then on Fridays, they participate in unique activities including site visits to startups, panel discussions, and visits to St. Louis neighborhoods. Applications generally run from mid-December to early-February each year.
Student Entrepreneurial Program (StEP)
StEP provides a unique opportunity for students to own and operate a business on- or off-campus. Student owners can supplement the valuable business and entrepreneurial skills they learn in the classroom while gaining real-world experience as they manage and lead their own businesses.
Meet & Eats
"Meet & Eats" are irregularly occurring talks intended to help expose students to a variety of creators, innovators and entrepreneurs. The topic and/or industry changes every time, but one thing remains consistent: We buy you food!
Various schools at Washington University offer entrepreneurial training for credit. One such course is The Hatchery (Business Planning for New Enterprises). It is offered by the Olin Business School in both the fall and spring semesters and is open to all students at the university.
Students form teams around a commercial or social venture idea proposed by a student or community entrepreneur. The deliverables for the course include two presentations to a panel of judges and a complete business plan. The deliverables in the course are similar to the deliverables in the Skandalaris Center's business plan competitions and can be a valuable first step toward competitions and funding for a new venture.
The Skandalaris Center offers two business plan competitions for undergraduate students:
The SC Cup provides expert mentorship to scalable, for-profit ventures to ready them for commercializing their idea, launching, and pitching to investors.
- Who Can Apply: Washington University students, postdocs and recent alumni
- Award: Up to $5K, six months of mentorship
GIA awards scalable, impactful, quick-to-market Washington University-affiliated startups.
- Who Can Apply: Washington University students, postdocs, residents and recent alumni
- Award: Up to $50K
Please contact the Skandalaris Center for additional information about all programs. We're excited to hear from you!