Our Mission

We help student founders build the future.

Dorm Room Fund is the best way for student founders to grow their startup. If you're a student or recent graduate working on a startup, we want to help.

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#DRF4Life

Join us

One check in, but an entire network to tap into.

Our network becomes yours.

Whether you're looking to raise another round, meet other unicorn founders, hire for that critical role, or get on a call with industry experts, DRF's network will support you and your company.

We fund you with a $40,000 check.

We partner early to get you from idea to product.

We keep it real.

Being a first time founder is a hard job. At DRF, we help you avoid the common mistakes and navigate the early challenges.

We back you while you’re still in school.

We want to support student founders even before you decide to take it full-time.

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Where we started

Our humble origins

In 2012, First Round Capital had a spicy idea.

What if we brought together a group of all-star aspiring VCs and startup operators—who happened to be students—and asked them to seek out student founders building the next wave of great companies?

Thus, Dorm Room Fund was born. Since then, we’ve invested in over 380 companies led by visionary student founders. Those founding teams have raised $2.8B+ in follow-on capital and created more than $9B in value. Our companies have redefined industries, ICO’d, and are changing the world.

We’ve built a vibrant community of hundreds of founders, mentors, and investors sharing ideas, connections, and experience. We’ve assembled a team committed to DRF founders—and we’re all in.

Our Initiatives

Commitment to Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion

Dorm Room Fund strives to be an industry leader in diversity, equity, and inclusion. Representation, access, and inclusion matter deeply to us. We’re committed to continuing to improve in building a team, and investing in companies, that strongly feature members who identify as Black, Indigenous, LatinX, female, LGBTQ+, non-binary, and other groups underrepresented in VC.

Programs

We’ve created programs like the Blueprint Project and Female Founder Track to use our resources to help empower and create opportunity for underrepresented students. Learn more about the programs here.

We recognize that we have a long way to go. But we are not content to merely meet, or narrowly exceed, the underwhelming norms of our industry. We are determined to raise the bar for VC, to learn and to do better, to hold ourselves accountable for our shortcomings, and to pursue growth and justice in our actions as individuals and as an organization.

faq

FAQs

Why apply to Dorm Room Fund?

DRF is the best place for students to build a company. We’ve learned many of the hard lessons for you. And aside from a check to build a company, you have an unparalleled student & alumni network, strong mentors, a community of fellow founders & investors, and hands-on help to get you to your seed stage. Once a DRF founder, you’re #DRF4Life!

What can I expect at each stage of the evaluation?

In general, we operate on a screening basis. Once you submit an application, you may receive a "pass" message noting that we declined to fund, or you may obtain the first call. An investment partner will hop on a first call to better understand your company. If you move on to the next stage, you receive a second call. For the final pitch, you meet with a regional team, and if the majority votes in favor of the idea, we choose to fund you. After the final pitch, you can expect two days for a response or more time if we have follow up questions.

Do I need an MVP?

No idea is too early for Dorm Room Fund, but we love founders who have gone unreasonably deep and prove to us that they care about the idea. Whether you have extensive user research or a demo, we want to see proof that you truly care about a problem and understand your customers.

Can I reapply with the same startup idea?

Yes! We recognize that many startup founders have brilliant ideas but may apply too early to Dorm Room Fund. As an example, Snackpass, which raised a $70 million Series B round, applied twice.

What if the members of my team recently graduated?

We expect at least one found member of the team to be enrolled or have graduated within the last year.

Can I apply to Dorm Room Fund if my startup is incorporated internationally?

No, Dorm Room Fund invests in companies incorporated in the U.S. Startups can be incorporated in the U.S. but built internationally. If you have questions about company eligibility, reach out to us at [email protected]