Entrepreneurial Summer Intern Program

The Entrepreneurial Summer Program is designed to offer students experiential learning opportunities that afford deep insight into the day-to-day activities of early-stage companies through summer internships.

Stanford GSB seeks companies that have promising business models and validation from customers and investors. Only host companies that can provide mentorship are approved.

The target wage for MBAs during the summer of 2017 is $1,350 per week. In some circumstances, ESP is able to offer stipends to student/company pairs with financial need; we ask companies to pay as much of the target wage as they are able. ESP stipends are awarded on a rolling basis until program funds are completely distributed for the year, so we encourage employers to make offers to students as soon as they have found appropriate candidates.

Eligible Companies

Companies can participate for a maximum of two years (which do not need to be consecutive) and are typically limited to one intern per year.

We seek entrepreneurial businesses that are operational, revenue-generating, and/or funded, and have:

  • Five to 50 full-time employees (not contractors) at the time of application
  • Pre Series B status or has been acquired by a search fund within the previous two years
  • Dedicated office space where interns can be co-located with key team members
  • An individual who is willing to serve as a dedicated mentor and who meets the mentor requirements

Companies acquired through a search-fund model must have been acquired in the last two years.


A company is ineligible to participate in ESP if it is:

  • A consulting, research, or brokerage firm
  • An investment fund
  • A startup that has not had a public launch
  • Offering a remote internship

A company is also ineligible if a current Stanford GSB student is a member of the founding team.

Students accepting an ESP stipend cannot have previous equity in the company nor can they take any equity while a part of ESP and/or during the rest of their time as a Stanford GSB student.

Mentor Requirements

Each company must assign an internal mentor to work with its student. The mentor should be:

  • A seasoned industry expert and/or entrepreneur with 10 to 15 years of significant and relevant experience
  • Able to interact with the student at least weekly

The mentor does not need to be the day-to-day supervisor. Moreover, a board director or investor who is actively engaged with the company may also serve as a mentor if company founders do not meet the above requirements.

Application and Recruitment Process

How you apply to ESP depends on whether you have identified a student for the intern position.

Applying Without a Student

If you are are interested in hiring a student but do not have a candidate identified, you may apply for preapproval and then recruit a student.

  1. Complete the ESP employer application.
  2. Post your position through the Stanford GSB Job Board. You don’t need to wait for ESP approval to post the job.
  3. Identify and interview candidates.
  4. Once you have found a desirable student, extend an offer.
  5. Have your candidate submit his or her ESP student application to us for approval, with a copy of a signed offer letter.

We will market approved ESP opportunities to students via various methods. Each company must do its own recruiting, as we do not offer a matching service. If students are interested, they will contact you directly; you schedule your own interviews. You are not obligated to hire a student if you do not find a suitable candidate. Nor are you guaranteed a student.

Applying With a Student

If you have already identified a student intern, you and the student may apply together. After you have extended an offer to a student, he or she will fill out a student application specifying your position, which will trigger a corresponding company application.

  1. After a student accepts your offer, ask him or her to fill out the student application.
  2. An email will be sent to your company with a link to the corresponding company application.