Are you a university student intrigued by the idea of working at a startup after graduation? Are you eager to connect with like-minded, ambitious students from Australia and
New Zealand?

Startmate’s Student Fellowship offers university students and recent graduates a peek behind the scenes of what it’s like to work at a startup and life-long access to Startmate’s community.

Program dates: 27th November - 8th December

Applications closed.

NSW student cohort & activities funded by

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VIC student cohort & activities funded by

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Continuous Learning

“Startups are super interesting. The teams are small and the velocity is high. … You learn enough to fix the problem, build a solution and move on to the next problem. This results in exposure to a lot of technologies and approaches, and a lot of personal growth.”
— Eddie Atkinson, Student Fellow (Summer 2020/21)


Technical to non-technical

“By the third day of my internship, I was already pitching to the Queensland Small Business Commission.”
— Tsamara, Student Fellow (Summer 2020/21)


Solo founder to founding team

“The great thing about hiring through Startmate is the people who join through one of the Fellowship programs are already pre-selected for being amazing. They are looking for change and roles where they can have a big impact, and everything that working for a startup can provide.”
— Gridcognition (Startmate, Mel20 Alumni)


Solo founder to founding team

“Why does the UK have such a financial services driven economy? Basically … ask the smartest undergraduates ‘what are you going to do next?’, they're all like, ‘oh, I'm going to go work at Goldman Sachs’ or whatever. … The reason Silicon Valley is so special? It is the one place in the world where [ambitious students] say ‘we’ll start a company’.”
— Matt Clifford, Founder at Entrepreneur First.

Who is right for the Startmate Students' Fellowship?

It’s a common misconception that you have to be technically minded to work at a startup. This is simply not true. Whether you’re studying arts, engineering, music, science, law, business or anything in between, the Student Fellowship can help you determine whether a career in startups is the right fit for you.

Our Student Fellows come from all backgrounds, experiences and walks of life. However, they are all:

  • Curious about the possibility of a career in the startup world;
  • Tenacious and willing to create their own opportunities;
  • Fast-moving individuals who thrive in chaos and uncertainty;
  • Problem-solvers who love finding creative solutions; and
  • Team players looking to make authentic connections and join a community for life.

We’re especially interested in you if you would like to work in, found, or invest in startups in the future (or now)!

We place intersectionality at the forefront of our programs, irrespective of age, race, disability, cultural background, gender or sexuality. All university students are welcome to apply.

What is the Students' Fellowship experience like?

The Student Fellowship runs for 2 weeks, during which time Fellows hear from big-name guest speakers from within the ecosystem, and have the opportunity to ask questions and network during and after sessions.

Fellows also team up and participate in a side-project that involves coming up with a startup idea, testing and refining it, and pitching the finished product at the end of the program.

You’ll also be added to a talent pool that will open you up to internship opportunities at Australian and New Zealand startups.

And the journey doesn't end after 2 weeks. Our Student Fellows join Startmate’s community of operators, founders and investors for life, and make meaningful connections with other ambitious, passionate students from all over the country.

Check out this program reflection from Summer23 cohort student fellow, Melody Wu.

Program Overview

The Student Fellowship gives students the chance to explore what a career in startups might look like and how to go about entering the world of startups.

Student Fellows will have the chance to hear from a range of incredible speakers about their founder journey, what advice they’d give to their university self, and will also cover topics such as:

  • Developing a growth mindset
  • How to build an MVP
  • How to leverage social capital and land your first startup job

In addition to the sessions, Fellows can pick and choose to take part in other areas of the program:

  • Coaching: 1:1 coaching with any of our awesome coaches, ranging from founders to investors
  • Squads: a chance to build your network and startup community in your local area
  • Founder Challenge: the chance to come up with a startup idea, test and refine it, and pitch the finished product at the end of the program - with automatic acceptance into our pre-accelerator, Launch Club as a prize
  • Interview Night: a night of speed interviews (think speed dating, but you might get an internship rather than a relationship) with some of ANZ’s top startups that are hiring at the moment.

Sessions will take place via Zoom, with extra in-person networking opportunities in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, and Auckland.

Time Commitment

Sessions will run mostly at lunchtime and in the evening, with approximately 20 hours of content across the program. It will be an intense learning and networking experience. You’ll get out what you put in!

Sessions will be recorded and available after the program ends, but you will get the most out of the program if you can attend the live sessions.

In general, the program follows a set operating cadence. Live sessions will typically run:

  • Monday, Tuesday, Thursday: 12-1PM, 5-7PM AEST [sessions]
  • Wednesday (this extends +1 week after the program): 5:30-6:30PM AEST [coaching]
  • Friday: bonus content, socials + networking

****In addition to the content sessions, there will also be in-person drinks and regular catch-ups with your Squad and Coach.

Depending on your own bandwidth and personal objectives, you can then scale up from there - dive into bonus resources, connect with other Fellows & Coaches, build your network, etc.

What else do I need to know?


The Student Fellowship is a two-week, mostly remote, bootcamp that runs twice a year during the winter and summer student holidays, with paid internship opportunities to follow.


Each cohort is made up of about 150-200 students and recent graduates (up to six months post-graduation).


27 November - 8 December 2023


Price for program → $200AUD (incl. GST)
Scholarships Available

Additional scholarship criteria

Financial hardship

- A person that does not live at home and funds living costs during university via Centrelink and/or working

- A person that lives at home but does not receive financial support from parents

- A person whose ability to work is being affected, or is likely to be affected, by the long-term and ongoing effects of one of the following:

  • a severe and long-term (or a severe and recurrent) medical/psychiatric condition or illness
  • a learning, sensory, physical, psychological or other disability/disorder
  • trauma or abuse
  • A person who has lost their job, or whose job prospects have been significantly affected, by COVID-19.

Carer’s responsibility

  • A person who provides another person’s ongoing support because of a long-term medical condition, a mental illness, a disability, frailty or the need for palliative care.
  • May or may not be a family member
  • May or may not live with the person they care for
  • May be in receipt of a Centrelink Carer Allowance or Carer Payment.
  • Volunteers under the auspices of a voluntary organisation are not included.

Sole parent’s responsibility

  • A person of any age who is single and has at least one dependent child under 18 who is wholly or primarily in their care and who is living in Australia.

Long term medical condition / disability

  • A person whose ability to work is being affected, or is likely to be affected, by the long-term and ongoing effects of one of the following:
  • A severe and long-term (or a severe and recurrent) medical/psychiatric condition or illness
  • A learning, sensory, physical, psychological or other disability/disorder
  • Trauma or abuse.

Refugee status

  • A person who is, or has previously been, the holder of an Australian refugee visa.


  • For those that do not fall into one of the above categories, we provide the opportunity to explain why they’d like a scholarship.
  • We grant them on a case by case basis for the other category, and it is at the discretion of the Program Leader.

Apply for the Startmate Student Fellowship

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