Duke Engineering Entrepreneurial Pipelines Startup Entry Accelerator (DEEP SEA)

Startup Challenge for ECE Graduate Students

Combining the expertise you gain while earning a graduate degree in engineering at Duke with the seed money to launch a startup, the Duke Engineering Entrepreneurial Pipelines Startup Entry Accelerator (DEEP SEA) offers a fantastic opportunity for ECE graduate students to pursue their entrepreneurial dreams.

One team will receive funding for a year to get their startup off the ground. Think you have the next great idea? We want to help you make your dream a reality. Duke ECE has a strong track record for producing successful entrepreneurs.

Read about DEEP SEA funding recipient Ryan McCormick, whose startup aims to transform how blood glucose is monitored.

How It Works

1. Submit a proposal: In the Fall semester, you’ll create a proposal that identifies your team, proposed startup idea, technical skills required and business model basics.

2. Compete against other teams
: In the Spring semester, an advisory committee composed of faculty and entrepreneurs will evaluate the proposals and provide feedback to the students. This evaluation process is intended to be highly educational to the students in addition to being selective.

3. Winner gets funding: One or more teams will be chosen to receive funding for their startup. The funding lasts for one year.

Who’s Eligible

To be considered for the DEEP SEA program, at least one team member must be completing an ECE graduate program (PhD, MEng, or MS) in the school year during which the proposal is submitted. Other team members may come from other graduate programs within Duke Engineering, and we particularly encourage teams to include someone from the Master's of Engineering Management (MEM) program.


To apply, complete the DEEP SEA online application form. The application period is currently closed.