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Claremont McKenna

Claremont, CA

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How to start a startup at Claremont McKenna

Student Groups

Pomona Ventures

Entrepreneurship community hosting skill-building workshops on starting a company and regular pitch competitions for students.

Graphite Group

Consulting society assisting scaling startups across Los Angeles.

Product Space @ Claremont

Claremont’s premier product club offering a fellowship, where fellows work in teams to develop and ship a product. Great for aspiring PMs, but also very useful for aspiring founders.


Modern incubator for AI projects and ideas with cross-functional applications across numerous industries. Holds workshops on technical entrepreneurship, cognitive science, and machine learning.

Accelerators and Incubators


An eight-week incubator for all students and alums of the Claremont Colleges. It is modeled after the famous YC Startup School and carries prizes up to $120k in investment.

Social Innovation Moonshot Fellowship

Students will pitch their ideas and have the chance to win funding/investment to implement their ideas. Students will have the option of applying it towards professional development interning at an award-winning social enterprise or using it to launch their enterprise.

Hackathons and Competitions


Pomona’s annual pitch competition. Students have the opportunity to win up to $10,000 in funding, meetings with VC firms, and receive mentorship from startup founders + VCs in the months leading up to the pitch.

Claremont FinTech Hackathon

A month-long national competition where students at the Claremont consortium have to solve a business challenge. The winner has the opportunity to develop their project with S&P Global.

5C Hackathon

Annual 24-hour technology-focused hackathon, attracting hundreds of students across the Claremont Colleges. No business, design, or coding experience is required to participate.

RLCIE Case Competition

An annual two-hour-long competition where students devise solutions to global problems. Cash prizes totaling $1000.

KLab “The Pitch” Competition

An annual three-hour-long social innovation Competition. Winners recieve $500 to develop their idea and direct mentoring from CMC alumni entrepreneurs.

KLab Impact-a-thon

An annual weekend-long competition where students use technology to develop solutions to social problems. Students receive mentorship and skill-building workshops from global entrepreneurs. Cash prizes totaling $2750.

Angel Summit

Students get to pick their new venture ideas at the startup stage and have the opportunity to receive funding from CMC alumni.

University Resources

Silicon Valley progra

An off-campus program providing students with the opportunity to work on exciting challenges facing technology firms in Silicon Valley.

Silicon Valley Networking Trek

Provides CMC students with the opportunity to establish relationships with alumni working in the Silicon Valley and gain exposure to various job opportunities and resources.

Randall Lewis Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship

The Fellows Program provides experiential learning, mentoring, and networking to prepare students to be innovative entrepreneurs.

Summer Design Fellowship Program

Students work in teams with partner organizations to solve ambitious and ambiguous problems through a combination of equity-based, human-centered design and systems thinking.

Dinner with Worldchangers

Students are invited to meet and converse with award-winning social entrepreneurs to learn more about their experience launching their initiative, changing systems, failing, and iterating.

Makership Design and Prototyping Training Program

During the ten-week program, students will work alongside industry experts at the Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator (LACI) to ideate and fabricate a product of their own.


Interactive workshops on entrepreneurship and students have the opportunity to network and receive mentorship from CMC’s distinguished board/fellows.


The Makerspace features configured co-working spaces, meeting rooms, mentors, skill training workshops, and a prototyping lab to encourage interaction, prototyping, and collaboration to promote the development of entrepreneurial ideas.

Notable Courses

Leading Entrepreneurial Ventures (PSYC141 CM)

Fintech Practicum (ECON181 CM)

Startups (Lead142-2)

Making a Difference: Strategies for Solving Social Problems(LEAD121 CM)

Foundations of Leadership (LEAD010 CM)

Fundamentals of Leadership (LEAD010-HM)

Human-Centered Design (E180 HMC)

New Product Development (ENGR181 HM)



University-focused venture fund investing up to $500K in emerging startups launching from the university scene around the US

Crescent Fund

University-focused venture fund investing up to $40K in technical startups across southern California.

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