The Yale Entrepreneurial Society (YES) is, in their own words, “a completely undergraduate-student-run and independent 501(c)3 non-profit corporation dedicated to promoting entrepreneurship at Yale.” They were founded in 1999 by a group of students interested in starting their own ventures. Every Friday, these friends would meet over beer and pizza to discuss their ideas. Since then, YES has grown into a society of 50-100 people who form a network of entrepreneurs at Yale.
What They Do
YES hosts conferences featuring notable speakers in various fields; recently Ben Carpenter, Wall Street CEO and author of The Bigs, and Miles Lasater, Yale alum and founder of HigherOne. Wendy Kopp, founder & CEO of Teach for America and Warren Buffet have been featured in previous years. YES also runs an annual elevator pitch competition, where undergraduate and graduate students give three minute pitches about their start up ideas. Their larger scale competition is called the “Yale Venture Challenge“. Student start-ups are expected to submit a proposal including an executive summary, market & customer analysis, profit strategy, and final projections. Winners are awarded a prize in the tens of thousands to kickstart their entrepreneurial venture.
If you have a great start up idea and are looking for a team, or if you are just interested in meeting innovative thinkers, YES is a great resource for you. Their goals of “promoting entrepreneurship by harnessing the power of the Yale network”and, “getting great ideas out of labs and dorm rooms” makes YES a great facilitator of undergraduate entrepreneurship.
How to Get Involved
To get involved, email contact [at] yesatyale [dot] org.