Varsity Venture Studio

Turning ideas into funded software businesses.

Learn more at FAQsSubmit an idea

Submission deadline: Oct. 11, 2021

Check out our Fall 2021 kickoff event recording to:

  • Learn what has changed with Varsity Venture Studio since last year

  • Hear from those previously selected on what working with the Varsity team is like

  • Get examples of tools you'll use to test your idea with the team

Office Hours

Questions? We'll be hosting 6 office hour sessions:

Sept. 20

1-3 p.m.

Sept. 22

1-3 p.m.

Sept. 27

1-3 p.m.

Sept. 29

1-3 p.m.

Oct. 4

1-3 p.m.

Oct. 6

1-3 p.m.

Varsity Venture Studio Timeline


Aug. - Oct. 2021

Idea submissions
Final deadline: Oct. 11


Oct. - Nov. 2021

Explore and refine ideas
10-20 total ideas selected


Dec. - Jan. 2022

Prepare for Sprint Week
Top 2-3 ideas advance

Varsity Venture Studio, a UW-Madison-wide venture studio, turns ideas into funded software businesses.

(you don’t have to be a software developer, or even know one!)

Whether you have a solution to a customer problem, research challenge, or industry inefficiency, Varsity Venture Studio can help transform big ideas into real companies.

Submitting an idea to Varsity provides a view into how venture capitalists evaluate ideas and how business models are built and tested. Varsity will assess, downselect, and refine ideas through a structured venture building process, ultimately leading to the launch of at least one funded company.

There is no cost to participate, and we welcome ideas from anyone in the University of Wisconsin-Madison community.

Go ahead and submit an idea and our team will quickly assess a potential fit. We will reach out to you if we have questions, or if the idea is selected to advance.

Submit an Idea

A look back at last year

We've been busy transforming ideas into viable solutions for real software businesses. Here is an overview of what happened over last fall and winter.


150+ ideas generated

Idea generation: first phase


20+ ideas evaluated

Explore and select ideas:
second phase complete


4 ideas selected

Preparing for one funded company launch: in progress

There is no cost to participate, and we welcome ideas from anyone in the University of Wisconsin - Madison community.

Be on the lookout for one of several upcoming virtual idea-sharing sessions we will be hosting with different campus-based organizations, departments, and teams.

Submit Your Idea

Find out more

Have any questions? We may be able to answer them for you.

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