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Arthur W. Buerk Center for Entrepreneurship

Supporting student entrepreneurs and the entre-curious since 1991

Upcoming Deadlines
Apply for the Entrepreneurship Minor – Fall Quarter Deadline: Oct. 25
RSVP for Team Formation Event: Environmental Innovation Studio – Thursday, Oct. 24 at 4pm in Maple Hall Great Room
Apply for Prototype Funding – Fall deadline is November 19
Learn More about Startup Tree!

About Us

Founded in 1991, the Buerk Center offers an exceptional curriculum, real-world experiences, and connections to the Seattle entrepreneurial community to inspire students from all majors and disciplines across campus to pursue their entrepreneurial passions.

While our core curriculum focuses on entrepreneurial strategy, finance, and marketing, our electives run the gamut from Venture Investing to Software Entrepreneurship, from Grand Challenges for Entrepreneurs to Biomedical Entrepreneurship. The Buerk Center focuses on the strengths of the University of Washington and Seattle, and creates new courses that capitalize on those strengths.

Seattle and the Cascadia Corridor is a magnet for entrepreneurs. It has an entrepreneurial culture, research powerhouses, support for early-stage entrepreneurs, sources of capital, a talented pool of workers, and a strong media to tell startup stories. The Buerk Center celebrates this ecosystem annually with a series of innovation and startup competitions open to students at accredited colleges and universities across the Cascadia Corridor – Washington, Oregon, Idaho and British Columbia.

Program Highlights

Dempsey Startup Competition team
Dempsey Startup Competition (Dempsey Startup)

A premier Foster School event involving more than 400 alumni and entrepreneurs as judges, mentors, supporters.

Thanks to UW alumni Neal Dempsey, the Business Plan Competition is now the Dempsey Startup Competition!

Read more about the Dempsey Startup

Environmental Innovation Challenge contestant with sample
Alaska Airlines Environmental Innovation Challenge (EIC)

Encourages students to solve our world’s most pressing environmental problems with innovations that have market potential.

Read more about the EIC

Health Innovation Challenge team pitching
Hollomon Health Innovation Challenge (HIC)

A groundbreaking platform for innovation in the rapidly growing industry of health and healthcare.

Read more about the HIC

Uphill Designs
Jones + Foster Accelerator

Our accelerator helps early-stage, student-led companies get off the ground with six months of help from expert mentors and up to $25,000 in follow-on funding. Applications for the 2019 cohort open on June 14.

Read more about the Jones + Foster Accelerator

Lavin students
Lavin Entrepreneurship Program

Open to all undergraduate majors, the Lavin program provides students with the experience, skills and know-how to succeed in their future business ventures. Applications due October 22.

Read more about the Lavin Program

MBA students
Entrepreneurship Certificate

UW graduate students can earn a certificate in entrepreneurship while gaining real-world experience and mentoring from the best of Seattle’s thriving entrepreneurial community.

Read more about the Entrepreneurship Certificate

Foster students on campus
Master of Science in Entrepreneurship

The new 12-month Master of Science in Entrepreneurship is offered by the UW Foster School of Business and the Buerk Center for Entrepreneurship. This program will prepare you to launch by giving you the knowledge, mentoring, experience, and connections to build a high-impact startup.

Read more about the Master of Science in Entrepreneurship program

Team Formation

Come to our team formation nights to meet fellow entrepreneurial minds with the skills or ideas you need to enter a competition! You can find our full schedule on the calendar below.

If you’re looking for team members, wanting to enter a competition, or work on a startup project, create a profile on Startup Tree. Offer up your skills to build your team!
NOTE: This site is for current students only!

Attend an event


Read the Buerk Center blog

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