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Y Combinator Looks Beyond Mentorship – Announces Online Startup School For Active Founders

Y Combinator Looks Beyond Mentorship – Announces Online Startup School For Active Founders

Global accelerator Y Combinator has announced its online Startup School with classes beginning from April 5, 2017. The 10-week Massively Open Online Course (MOOC) can be accessed through its website.

The classes are designed for founders who are actively pursuing their startup. In addition, these founders will have additional access to founder-advisors who can help give feedback on their company.

As per a statement on the official website, “The Startup School is created as a resource for the ones who want to start their own journey. We want to teach everyone how to start a startup and help them along the way with guidance from people who’ve started companies. It is not meant to replace YC. However, more information on your company may help us improve our decision process if you consider applying to YC in the future.”

With this move, YC wants to to build a community of entrepreneurs who can encourage and teach each other.

How It Works

Lectures will be taught by a group of entrepreneurs and industry experts like Alan Kay, Jan Koum (WhatsApp), Patrick Collison (Stripe), Steve Huffman (Reddit), Adam D’Angelo (Quora), Alex Schultz (Facebook), Tracy Young (PlanGrid), Jason Lemkin (SaaStr), Harry Zhang (Lob), Dalton Caldwell (YC), Emmett Shear (Twitch) to name a few.

They will cover topics ranging from how to get ideas, how to build a great product, how to grow, how to build a culture, how to raise money, and more. 30%-40% of these sessions will be recorded on campus at Stanford University.

For those who are working, ‘Class Office Hours’ will be held each week to give live advice and feedback to the class.

Participation in the course will follow two tracks – Spectator and Startup Founder.

Participants who want to learn but are not actively working on their startup come under Spectators. They can follow along and have full access to all 10 lectures and class office hours, released once a week without signing up.

Startup Founders are those participants who are actively pursuing their startup. In addition to full access to all the lectures and class office hours, these participants will be assigned a group of students and a group Advisor. The advisors are mostly YC alumni, like Daniel Kan (Cruise), Sanjay Dastoor (Boosted Boards), and Cindy Wu (Experiment). Along with this, they will have advisory sessions once every week via online video and access to a Slack room with the other students in their group.

Every participant needs to submit at least 9 of the 10 weekly updates and attend 9 out of 10 group office hour sessions. Upon successful completion, they will receive a certificate of completion and the opportunity to share what they are working on with the public.

Y Combinator is one of the top accelerators in the world and its association with Indian startups started with HackerRank in 2011. This association has grown over the years with ClearTax, Razorpay, Innov8, Kisan Network, JustRide, and Meesho, among others. In 2016, after almost two months from announcing the induction of three Indian startups into its summer batch, the team visited India for the first time in 2016.