Through strategic mentorship, NC IDEA SOAR supports female-led scalable businesses currently facing the proven funding gap for women seeking equity-backed capital. NC IDEA SOAR provides dedicated mentorship and access to valuable resources providing the support needed to successfully achieve fundraising goals.

Applying to NC IDEA SOAR

NC IDEA SOAR has one application cycle per year, which opens at the beginning of the calendar year in January. The below timeline includes the important dates and deadlines for our current 2018 Program.



January 9 – 2018 NC IDEA SOAR Application Opens

January 10 at 1:00pmNC IDEA SOAR Information Session at American Underground

January 29 – NC IDEA SOAR Application Submission Deadline
*All pre-proposals must be submitted and received by 5:00pm EST (no exceptions)*

February 13 – NC IDEA SOAR Notifications and Semi-Finalist Invitations Sent

February 20 – NC IDEA SOAR Semi-Finalist Presentations

February 22 – NC IDEA SOAR Notifications and Finalist Invitations Sent

February 27 – NC IDEA SOAR Finalist Mentorship Session 1

March 13 – NC IDEA SOAR Finalist Mentorship Session 2

March 16 – Notifications Sent and 2018 NC IDEA SOAR Companies Announced

Early April – Launch of 2018 NC IDEA SOAR Cohort

NC IDEA SOAR solicits applications at the beginning of the calendar year. The application window is open for approximately 4 weeks. All applicants are required to complete NC IDEA’s written pre-proposal application, which can be accessed online during each active application cycle. NC IDEA uses an online application portal that allows applicants to create an account so applications may be saved, reviewed and submitted prior to the stated deadline. The pre-proposal asks you to provide detail on various aspects of your company. The pre-proposal application has character count restrictions requiring you to provide clear, concise answers.

Following the application deadline, pre-proposals will be reviewed by a review team including NC IDEA staff, NC IDEA fellows, investors and other partners in the entrepreneurial ecosystem. Companies will be notified of their status and receive specific feedback on their application. Select applicants will be invited to progress to the semi-finalist phase. Semi-finalists will be invited to pitch to NC IDEA’s review team. Each company will be given 10 minutes to pitch and have 15 minutes for Q&A.

Select teams that are determined ready to fundraise will be invited to the finalist round. Finalists will be invited to attend 2 mentorship sessions with NC IDEA SOAR strategy experts. Each individual session will be 90 minutes long and will be scheduled 1 month apart from one another. This portion of the application process will enable the mentors in our network to learn more about the needs of the company and provide feedback for fundraising preparation, while further evaluating the company’s investment-readiness.

NC IDEA SOAR Companies

Companies selected to participate in NC IDEA SOAR will receive:

  • Dedicated, strategic mentorship for one year from fundraising strategy experts, with the option to apply for continuation at the close of the completed year.
  • Access to the NC IDEA network of advisors, workshops and other resources.
  • Timely and warm introductions to investors in the NC IDEA network and contacts throughout the U.S.
  • Quarterly participation in privately held roundtable events with female entrepreneurs who have successfully completed an equity-backed plan for growth (1 per quarter).