Carnegie Mellon University

What is Project Olympus?

Project Olympus offers support and resources for CMU faculty, students, recent alumni, and staff who want to turn their cutting-edge research and great ideas into startups. Project Olympus is open to CMU entrepreneurs at any stage, from concept to business creation. At Project Olympus you will learn how to find product/market fit and develop a feasible business model to attract funding that will take your venture to the next level.

What Project Olympus has to offer:

Who is eligible?

Project Olympus is open to teams with at least one CMU affiliate founder (faculty, staff, undergrad, grad, postdoc, recent alum).

Ready to apply?

Applications are on a rolling basis, click here to get the support to help your startup be a success!


Matthew Katsaros 
Program Coordinator, Project Olympus

Startup Projects

The startup projects are the centerpiece of the enterprise. Here teams of faculty, students, or staff from across the campus explore the commercial potential of their research and ideas. Guidance is provided at every stage by the Project Olympus in-house entrepreneurs-in-residence and a network of economic development partners.

Have an idea? Fill out the Business Concept Template and we will assign you an Entrepreneur-in-Residence to schedule a first-time meeting with to go over your idea.

Olympus Startup Projects A-Z

Project Olympus Show & Tell


Project Olympus Show & Tells provide a window into the many exciting startup and entrepreneurial endeavors on campus. It's also an excellent place for students and faculty to connect with the larger local entrepreneurial community.

April 7, 2022, 4:00 - 6:00 PM
Presentations (In-person & Remote) 4:00-5:15PM
Networking Session (In-person) 5:15-6:00PM


Spark Grants

pulse gifThe Olympus Spark Grant Fund helps Olympus student startup projects kick-start their business ideas. Every semester, students submit proposals and pitch their ideas to investors, with winning projects going on to receive funds. The funds are provided by charitable gifts from alumni and other community donors.

Learn more

Customer Discovery Kickstart Program

In this new program, early-stage startups will explore the feasibility of their business ideas. This program is designed to help early-stage startups determine product – market fit by connecting with potential customers and industry stakeholders. Through the process, teams will quickly gain insights into their intended market and use customer research techniques to inform the next steps in their entrepreneurial journeys.

The next cohort will run between Sept. 21 - Oct. 26, 2022. 

Learn more

What Are People Saying?

Kelly Collier“Project Olympus has been incredibly valuable to us in the infant stages of our company by providing mentoring, advice, a home base location, and connections within the Project Olympus network. Having someone outside of the company to give us unbiased thoughts and opinions from their experiences in entrepreneurship is critical to keeping an open mind and keeping the company on track.”

- Kelly Collier, CEO, ActivAided Orthotics *Acquired*
davin.jpeg"Project Olympus was the perfect place to launch my first company. Through Project Olympus I was able to get critical insights on how to refine my product, my value proposition and my market strategy. Project Olympus also helped me form a core network of business connections and mentors who have helped me pilot multiple successful businesses over the years."

- Davin Lafon, Founder, Aletheia Innovations

More ways to support Project Olympus.

We invite you to join the supporters of Project Olympus. Your contributions will help us support commercialization by our best and brightest as vital to the growth and success of the university, the region, and the nation.



Danielle Hoffman 
Associate Director of Development 


Blue Tree Capital Group

Duolingo Inc.

Heinz Endowments

Idea Foundry

Innovation Works

K&L Gates

Kauffman Foundation

McCune Foundation

National Science Foundation

Pacven Walden Inc.

Pennsylvania Infrastructure Technology Alliance (PITA)

Stack Exchange Inc.


David A. Auerbach

Michael Baum

Tony R. Berkman

Lenore and Manuel Blum

Anthony Burlando

Mary Burlando

Roger Byford

Eric C. Cooper

Marcel D. DePaolis

Michael Donohue

Mark W. and Stephanie Dorgan

Marc C. Guldimann

Samir Gupta

Caddy and John Harper

Adrian Hodges

James Jacob Huttner, M.D., Ph.D.

Andrew S. Langsam Esq.

Roy Levin

Kit and Cliff Needham

Theo Nicholas

The Painter Family

Kelly Sacco

Richard Sanzi

Kyle J. Schriver

Michelle Schriver

Adam Sohnen, M.D.

Carol K. Stockman

Rocco R. Tarasi III

Richard and Nancy Waichler

Justin David Weisz

Robert A. Wooldridge

Phil K. Yoon