Join CEP as a Mentor
Why Become a Mentor?
A crucial part of the Clean Energy Prize is the further development and refinement of our semi-finalists’ startups in March and April of each year, before the final round competitions. Mentors play an important role in the process, offering market insights and entrepreneurship guidance to the budding companies to help them succeed in the competition and beyond. Many of our past participants have commented that the mentorship they received was worth just as much or more to their team’s development than the money they received through the competition. Past participants have raised in excess of $210 million in venture funding, including $16 million from the DOE ARPA-E.
Mentors are also invited to our Grand Prize Showcase and VIP Reception on Monday, April 28th. All mentors matched with teams are invited to join us at the Mentorship Launch Dinner on March 14th in Boston to meet their mentee startups.
Who Should Join as Mentors?
We invite seasoned professionals with experience relating to clean tech or entrepreneurship to join our mentorship database. Domains of expertise we are looking for include but are not limited to:
- Industry knowledge in a relevant field (our competition tracks include: alternative energy, energy efficiency, infrastructure and resources)
- Business plan / investor pitch
- Product development and tech commercialization
- Marketing strategies
- Sales/business development
- Technology and manufacturing
- Team building and entrepreneurial management
- Financial planning and fundraising
- Deep knowledge of one of the potential customer markets (e.g. utility, government customers for energy systems, etc.)
How to Join and How Does Mentoring Work?
We will email you in early March regarding whether a semifinalist company has been matched to your interest and expertise. You can choose to accept or decline to mentor for this year’s competition at that time. Please be aware that we may not be able to find a team that matches your interest this year — but there is always next year!
The time commitment for mentors matched with companies is dependent on the team and the mentor, however, we recommend you allocate at least 6-7 hours total over the course of the competition (March to late April). Activities may include business plan review and refinement, mock pitch feedback, and other types of coaching needed by the team, conducted in person or over email/skype.
We look forward to having you join us! Please don’t hesitate to contact us at cleanenergyprize at mit.edu if any questions.