The awards will help launch student-run software ventures at Johns Hopkins University. Software is the most agile and fast-growing sector in the economy and has been critical to economic recovery during the COVID pandemic. In 2022, Forbes reported that software is the “the last remaining source of dynamism in a global economy.” The software ecosystem is fast and competitive, characterized by rapid product development to meet limited windows of market opportunity. The awards will provide teams with the resources to fast launch and translate innovative concepts into viable products.

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We are soliciting applications for two types of awards:

To be eligible, the applicant team must include a full-time student (undergraduate or graduate) enrolled at Johns Hopkins and the full-time student must be an equal-partner, co-founder in the venture.

All awardee teams will be paired with a software mentor to assist in software development best practices, including tooling, testing, integration, cloud computing, and open-source software. This is in addition to the business, marketing, and financial mentorship available through FastForward U.

The Singhal Family Entrepreneurship Award

This award will provide established teams with well-developed product ideas with up to $30,000 to build their venture. Teams will be expected to dedicate the following summer to make their venture investor-ready and market-ready. Teams will have access to mentoring, investor and advisor networks, and peer/cohort ventures through FastForward U. Winning teams will be considered for participation in the FastForward U Summer Incubator, which provides a six-week coworking experience at FastForward U.

Applications for the Singhal Family Entrepreneurship Award should be completed by January 18, 2023. Winners will be announced in February 2023. 

The Singhal Family Seed Award

This award will provide up to $5,000 dollars to advance early-stage ventures to validate and develop ideas into products. Successful completion will prepare teams for the Entrepreneurship award, accelerator programs at FastForward U, or other funding opportunities. Seed awards may be granted to individual founders or small teams with the expectation that they will use funds to develop product and business plans, evaluate and develop markets, identify customers, and grow their team.

Applications for the Singhal Family Seed Award can be made at any time. Initial applications will be considered in February 2023.