Stanford Startup Wiki

General Tips

Learn and use the rapportive trick.

Use the Stanford Alumni Directory to find alumni, and their emails.

Famous Alums and Their Majors

See Wikipedia.

Some examples:

  • Brian Acton (BS 1994), co-founder of WhatsApp
  • Sergey Brin (MS), Google co-founder
  • Reid Hoffman, co-founder and Executive Chairman of LinkedIn
  • Peter Thiel, PayPal co-founder, Clarium Capital founder
  • And many more. This is a random subset of the list on Wikipedia.

Email Etiquette

Must read: Email Introduction Etiquette

General format when asking for a meeting with someone you don't know (cold email):

Hi [name],

My name is [name], and I'm a student at Stanford studying [major].

I'm (working on a startup named [x] | trying to learn more about [x]) etc.

Given (something that indicates why they are relevant for you to talk to), I'd really love to chat with you on the phone for 15 minutes if possible!

Let me know if that could work and I can suggest a few times :)




[Email signature that includes name/phone number]

After being introduced, make sure you suggest 2-3 times that work for you. 

Example: (mostly taken from the 42floors article)

Thanks Mark (moved to bcc).  

Suzanne, great to meet you.  Are you available to (meet for 30 minutes | chat on the phone for 15 minutes | etc) on [time 1]? If not, I could also do [time 2] or [time 3].



Meeting Etiquette

Don't miss meetings.

If you know you are going to be late to a meeting, email/message the person you are meeting as soon as you know there is a chance you may be late. This way, they can do productive work while they wait for you. Even if you will only be 1 minute late, this is still a good idea.

For meetings that are scheduled weeks in advance, send a reminder email confirming that you are looking forward to the meeting 1-2 days before.

VCs/Investors Who Are Highly Connected with Stanford Founders

  • Niko from General Catalyst
  • Pejman Mar Ventures
  • Keith Rabois at Khosla
  • Ravi from Alchemist Accelerator
  • This is just a short list of the top of my head right now, more will be added.

Startup Related Classes at Stanford University

Still offered:

  • CS147
  • E145
  • E245

Previously offered:

Students That Have Recently Come Out Of Stanford and Founded Interesting Companies

Including those on leaves of absence and those who have graduated.

[data to come - want to check that people are okay with publishing it first]

Things Students Learn About Startups By Sophomore Year

[to come. things like economics of the valley/vc, etc]