Startup Madison Week

November 8 – 14, 2021

Startup Week highlights and celebrates entrepreneurial activities and resources in communities across Wisconsin. Madison’s Startup Week coincides with Global Entrepreneurship Week, November 8-14.

Join UW–Madison and community partners for events and opportunities to help you discover Madison resources to start and grow a business.

See the events list below!

Free StartingBlock Day Passes for all Startup Week attendees

Monday November 8 through Friday, November 12, 8 am to 5 pm.

Please come to the StartingBlock front desk on the 2nd Floor to claim your pass.

StartingBlock Madison
821 E. Washington Avenue, 2nd Floor
Madison, WI 53703

Hire Badgers: bringing Two-Way Value to a Student Work Experience

Monday November 8, 2 – 3:30 pm (online, free)

Wisconsin Small Business Development Center

Did you know that the UW-Madison Work-Study Program, previously reserved for on-campus and non-profit organizations, has recently been expanded to small businesses – and even covers 75% of the wages earned? And that many UW-Madison students pursue internship opportunities as a way to develop new skills and explore career pathways?  If you’ve ever wondered about hiring a UW-Madison student, this session is for you!  We’ll discuss differences between work-study and student internship opportunities and how to make the experience a successful one for both you and the student.


WARF Entrepreneurons: Building a winning startup team–do’s, don’ts and maybes

Wednesday, November 10, 4 pm (hybrid, free)

Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation (WARF)
DeLuca Forum, Discovery Building
330 N. Orchard St.
Madison, WI 53715

Getting the team right is one of the first things a startup needs to address. Hear from experts and practitioners about sure bets, common mistakes and how to adjust.  Panelists include Ginger Auchter, Carex Consulting Group; Faraz Choudhury, Immuto Scientific; Greg Keenan, WARF, Rebecca Menefee, M3 Elevate and Anne Smith, UW–Madison Law and Entrepreneurship Clinic. Moderated by Aimee Arnoldussen, Discovery to Product (D2P)


Distinguished Entrepreneurs Lunch with Mike Forbes, CEO of Alter Eco

Thursday, November 11, 12:15 – 1:00pm (in-person, free RSVP requested)

Weinert Center for Entrepreneurship
5110 Grainger Hall
975 University Avenue
Madison, WI 53715

Come join us to meet Mike Forbes who has an impressive pedigree of building brands in the food and beverage space from olive oil to cookies to booze. Mike is a seasoned professional having previously worked at California Olive Ranch, General Mills, Procter & Gamble, Fortune Brands, and McKinsey & Company. Mike’s mission with Alter Eco is to help the planet first and make really delicious chocolate.


StartUp Learning Community 100 Hour Challenge

Thursday, November 11 through Sunday, November 14

UW-Madison students, put your creativity to the test in the 100 Hour Challenge, the UW student innovation contest. You could win $1,200 in cash prizes in one weekend! Use materials you can easily find in your dorm room, apartment, or around campus, to come up with a new product idea in 100 hours or less (essentially over a long weekend). Create a short video pitch or slide deck of your big idea for the chance to win prize money! Think like an entrepreneur and keep in mind the three elements of entrepreneurship: having an idea, taking action and creating value. This year’s all-virtual contest launches on Thursday, Nov. 11th, 2021 when students can check the 100 Hour Challenge website starting at 9:00 AM to find the list of ‘approved materials’ and sign up for the event. Final videos or slide decks need to be uploaded by mid-day Monday, Nov. 15th. Check out the website for official rules, FAQs, and sign up form, and get ready to create!

Discover more Startup Week events around Wisconsin:

Start-In Madison Region Entrepreneurial Resource Directory

Explore a comprehensive database of Madison-area resources for innovators and entrepreneurs to find funding, education, training, co-working space and more to support your idea.


If you need an accommodation to attend an event, please see the individual event listings and contact event organizers at least two weeks before the event date. In-person events on the UW-Madison campus will follow campus health and safety policies (including masking) in effect on the event date.