Apply here to get up to $100,000 to take a gap year and start a company instead.
The founding principle of Contrary is that most important technology companies — from Google to Snapchat to StitchFix — were started at universities.
However, this year’s pandemic has significantly impacted founders and their ability to raise capital, find collaborators, and access mentorship. This presents the problem: if you can't meet people on campus, how are you supposed to find a brilliant co-founder, access capital and mentorship, or spend time heads-down building?
65% of students we surveyed are either considering a leave of absence or have already committed to taking a gap year. Yet the unfortunate reality is that most people can't afford to just take a year off and sit this out.
That's why we’ve decided to invest up to $100,000 in up to 5 companies who choose to build rather than pay high prices for online classes.*
Contrary's gap year investment program will support members like any other portfolio company: with connections to operators who have scaled companies from zero to thousands of employees, a diverse network of potential hires, and tactical advice from our investment team.
We have no industry preferences and are also interested in funding international students, irrespective of visa status. A large portion of our portfolio companies were started by immigrants, and we don’t want physical location to get in the way of a startup.
The only requirements are that teams commit to working on their company full-time from September through spring of 2021, and that at least one member of the team is taking a gap year to build the company (undergrad/grad students and dropouts are welcome).
Teams can apply by filling out the application here.
All applications are due by 8/31, and are considered on a rolling basis. If you have any other questions, don't hesitate to reach out at [email protected].
* We’ll invest in companies through a standard SAFE (no discount, no MFN clauses), on a generous valuation depending on your level of progress such as number of users or technical milestones achieved.