The Patriots won the Super Bowl, MassChallenge kicked off application season, and a blizzard dropped over a foot of snow in Boston. And that was just the third week.
Not every week has been as unpredictable, but part of what attracted me to MassChallenge was the sense of endless possibilities that comes with working with startups. After graduating from college and looking around for a job, I found that I wanted to be part of something new and forward-thinking, with a focus on building a better future. During my first few days I often heard that MC thrived on a kind of hectic energyhow else can you host 128 startups across every industry in one space in the height of summer?so I looked forward to a certain level of unexpectedness. When my MC guide Kara interviewed me for the internship, she stressed that it wouldnt be a getting-coffee-and-making-copies type of dealevery day would bring something new.
So far thats ranged from meeting with a variety of corporate and nonprofit partners, to talking to alumni founders building the next big things, to watching the triumphant Pats plane land at Logan from the offices sweeping view across the seaport and harbor. Its been getting my first bite of the legendary Harpoon pretzel, learning about the world of VC funding, and having heated discussions about how old is too old to be a millennial. (I say 1987s a good cut-off.) True to MCs idea that interns take initiative and dive right into important projects, Ive gotten the chance to help lead the Partnerships teams ongoing application outreach efforts, researching hundreds of startups relevant to our partners interests and inviting them to apply to the program.
Above all, Ive gotten to see how MassChallenge does everything possible to help entrepreneurs succeed. Whether its cutting-edge 3D printing technology, a wristband wearable that shocks you out of bad habits, or an online platform that makes STEM education easier for teachers and students, the focus is always on helping the startup turn a dream into reality. Whether its through mentoring, scholarships, office space, or just getting to know and hang out with our founders and alumni, MCs dedication to the startups–all without taking any equity–is what keeps the machine running. Good ideas and passion might be evenly distributed across the world, but valuable resources and connections are notand thats where MassChallenge comes in.
Looking ahead, I can’t wait to see all the ideas out there, and which will make it here in just four months. If youre a student or recent graduate and want to see what 128 startups across every industry in one space looks like, apply for an internship here to help us all build the future.
– Chris Bean, MassChallenge Partnerships