Frequently Asked Questions

What are the dates of the program?
Dates change slightly year to year, but generally run late May to early August.

What are primary criteria for selection?
We are looking for innovative and dedicated founders with new ventures that are prepared for 10+ weeks of accelerated development. Competitive applicants will demonstrate likelihood of a viable market, have founder expertise relevant to their ventures' success, and show potential for positive impact to customers, users, and/or the community.

How many ventures will be selected?
The program will select anywhere from one to five ventures.

What if my team includes people who are not affiliated with Davidson?
In order to be eligible to apply to the Venture Lab, at least one founder must be a current Davidson student. The Davidson student founder must be enrolled either at the time of the application or during summer session (incoming freshman and graduating seniors are eligible to apply).

Can social ventures apply?
Yes, we highly encourage those with ventures from all industries and with all business models to apply. In fact, Queen City Forward, a nonprofit organization designed to scale the impact of social entrepreneurs, is based inside Packard Place and will serve as a resource to social ventures in Venture Lab.

What if I am a brand new venture?
Ventures at a variety of stages are encouraged to apply, from those preparing to raise significant funds, to those with only an idea.

Can I hold a job or internship during the program?
Other major commitments such as jobs or internships are highly discouraged. Participants must be able to commit full-time to developing their venture.

What if I have another commitment during the summer (family vacation, conference, etc.)?
If you have another short-term commitment, please indicate this in your application. If the commitment is long-term (more than a week), this will affect your chances of being accepted into Venture Lab.

Do I need to live in Charlotte? Does Davidson assist with housing?
Davidson pays for housing at Johnson C. Smith's Mosaic Village, located one mile from Uptown Charlotte. Packard Place is accessible by public transportation from the Mosaic Village.

What happens after Venture Lab?
For the most part, that is up to you! We will have a final demo day at the end of the summer for you to show off your hard work, but the extent to which you maintain relationships with mentors, Packard Place, and the Davidson alumni network is your decision.

Contact Hannah Levinson at or call 704-894-2202 with questions or for more information.