We messed up and sent acceptance emails to many Startup School applicants who we didn’t previously have a place for. We’ve decided to use this error as an opportunity to try something new: we’re going to let in every company that applied to Startup School. Below is the message we sent Startup School applicants who received the incorrect email.
Subject: Startup School: All Applicants are Now Accepted
Hi Founders –
As most of you already know, we screwed up and sent acceptances to companies that were not actually accepted to Startup School. We’ve decided to use this error as an opportunity to try something new: we’re going to let in every company that applied to Startup School.
Many apologies for the back and forth — to be clear: you are in.
Our goal has always been to help the maximum number of startups, but we were concerned that our infrastructure for Startup School would not support all the companies that applied, which was more than 15,000 startups. After today’s mistake, though, it seems like the only right thing to do is to let everyone in. We’ve decided to use our error as a forcing function to find a way to make Startup School work for all founders who applied.
As a Startup School founder, you will get access to all the course materials, the private community forum (advisors and YC partners will also participate), and you’ll be able to use the company update feature so that you’ll also be eligible for one of the hundred $10k equity-free grants.
The most important thing is that you will have a group of fellow founders to connect with so you can support one another. Unfortunately, we’re still constrained by number of advisors who volunteered to lead each group, which means your group won’t have an advisor. But having peers in a batch is what founders tell us is truly special about YC. We’re going to give you instructions on how to organize the group yourself and get nearly the same experience.
We’re excited about this new plan and look forward to having you in Startup School. We’ll send more information soon.
Adora, Geoff and Steven // Y Combinator
Adora was a Group Partner at YC and cofounder and CEO of Homejoy, which was funded by Y Combinator in 2010. Before that, she ran product at Slide.
Steven is the Online Community Director at YC. Previously, he built and ran Startup School, YC's free online course for startups, and worked on Special Projects at YC.
Geoff Ralston is the former President of Y Combinator and has been with YC since 2011. Prior to YC, he built one of the first web mail services, RocketMail which became Yahoo Mail in 1997.