The Sutardja Center for Entrepreneurship & Technology hosted an event with Y Combinator to help students understand how to apply to the top accelerator and hear from YC President Geoff Ralston on how to create a startup while attending school.
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YC President Geoff Ralston discusses how students can build startups while in college and get involved in Y Combinator’s programs. Before YC, Geoff built YahooMail (previously RocketMail), was the CEO of Lala (acquired by Apple) and co-founded Imagine K12 (the first Ed Tech Accelerator). Geoff will cover some of the myths that exist around starting startups, what you should do while you’re still in school if you want to start a company, and he’ll talk about how YC can help you get started. He’ll also spend time answering your questions.
About YC: Y Combinator is a startup fund based in Mountain View, CA. Twice a year YC invests a small amount of money in a large number of startups. The startups move to Silicon Valley for 3 months, and the YC partners work closely with each company to get them into the best possible shape and refine their pitch to investors. Each batch culminates in Demo Day, when the startups present their companies to a carefully selected audience of investors. Y Combinator has invested in over 2,500 companies including Stripe, Airbnb, Instacart, Dropbox, Reddit, Coinbase and Ginkgo Bioworks. The combined valuation of YC companies is over $150B.
Speaker Bio: Geoff Ralston is the President of Y Combinator and has been with YC since 2011. Prior to YC, he built one of the first web mail services, RocketMail which became Yahoo Mail in 1997. While at Yahoo, Geoff worked in engineering and ran a business unit before becoming Chief Product Officer. After Yahoo, he was CEO of Lala, which was acquired in 2009 by Apple. In 2011, he co founded Imagine K12, the first Ed Tech accelerator, which funded companies like ClassDojo and Remind, and merged with YC in 2016. He has an AB in Computer Science from Dartmouth, an MS in Computer Science from Stanford, and an MBA from INSEAD.