CatalyzU Venture Capital Fellowship



4 April 2024


5 Weeks


4 March 2024






The fundamentals edition of the CatalyzU Venture Capital Fellowship provides an introduction to the world of Venture Capital and is aimed at candidates looking to break into the VC ecosystem or those early in their journey within the space. More granularly, Fellows will gain an understanding of the underlying philosophy of venture capital, how it compares to other asset classes, and how venture capitalists make money. They will also gain an overview of the various processes used by VCs throughout the investment process – such as market analysis, deal scouting, pitch analysis, and due diligence. 

This curriculum is delivered through live, online lectures taught by leading venture capitalists both within the African continent and globally. 

Learning outcome

The primary objective of this Fellowship is to develop a foundational skill set in the sector and, importantly, develop your network in the ecosystem.

The Fundamentals Fellowship is aimed at candidates looking to enter the African venture capital ecosystem and requires no prior knowledge or experience working in venture capital. With that said, experience working in an investment field is beneficial. The primary learning outcome is to position Fellows to seamlessly integrate into a full time role – such as that of a Research Analyst, Investment Analyst, or Investment Associate – at a top-tier VC firm. Given the complementary skill sets, many CatalyzU graduates, who entered with an interest in the startup space, utilize their newly acquired knowledge to take up a position at a premier startup.

Alumni Support Ecosystem

Following the completion of the Fellowship, all successful graduates will ascend to the designation of a ‘Young African Catalyst’ – the name for alumni of CatalyzU. This includes (complimentary) access to the entirety of the esteemed Young African Catalyst network, comprised of the leading founders and venture capitalists from across all four corners of the continent. 



To earn a certificate, students must attend 80% of sessions and achieve a passing grade across all three assignments. Assignments will be graded as an outstanding effort, pass or not passed only and not receive individual scores. Students can appeal a not passed grade. Rubrics will be provided with every assignment to help students understand what each grade requires. Two out of the three assignments must be an outstanding effort to be awarded the certificate with distinction. Assignments submitted after the deadline will not be considered. All assignments must be a pure reflection of your own understanding and effort.



  • Stable internet connection
  • Availability to join synchronous, online lectures
  • Diligence to submit assignments and quizzes before the due date
  • No prior knowledge required in Venture Capital


The Fellowship is delivered over ten two hour sessions across five weeks  which are delivered virtually. The sessions are not recorded and are delivered live requiring you to attend each session. Attendance at 80% of sessions counts towards successful completion of the Fellowship. Lectures will be delivered through our CatalyzU Learning System which you will be onboarded prior to the start of the Fellowship.


Student Experience

Grace Jerolgan Nganakala

"This is a great opportunity. As a founder and aspiring player in the VC space, I’ve learned a lot from this fellowship, the lectures, assignments and the network have helped me better understand the VC ecosystem and their investment approach. I strongly recommend"

Adesola Adesanya

"As I reflect on my time in CatalyzU’s fellowship, I am incredibly grateful for the professional growth it has facilitated. It has been a rewarding journey filled with knowledge, connections, and inspiration. One of the most significant outcomes of my participation in the fellowship has been the honing of my skills in venture capital. I now feel more confident in my abilities and better equipped to navigate the complexities of this dynamic field."

Kwame Gyamfi

"The Venture Fellowship is highly recommended if you want to understand the dynamics of Africa Venture Capital. In addition to the insights, I had the opportunity to learn from top-notch investors on the continent. The icing on the cake is the Africa-wide alum community I belong to; these young, competent professionals are poised for impact."


Mouhammad Dieng

"Contextualized learning. Amazing trainers. Reactive team. Valuable content."

James van Heerden

"The VC Fellowship was comprehensive and full of incredible people who I was able to learn a lot from and add to my personal network. The CatalyzU team have created a rich learning experience that is a lot of fun to complete."

Richard Omondi Orido

"I'm glad I did the fellowship because I got actionable insights on what it takes to build a successful software business on the continent."


When will I hear back from CatalyzU?
  • Typically within 10 days of applying as applications are processed on a rolling basis.
  • Note considering the rolling acceptance process and our limited capacity, applying early is beneficial.
What is a Young African Catalyst?
  • A Young African Catalyst is a member of our esteemed CatalyzU Alumni Community. By way of characteristics, it is a young leader in the African startup & venture ecosystem.
  • At inception, CatalyzeU (formerly Young African Catalysts) focussed on individuals within the Venture Capital ecosystem that were under the age of 35, operating on the continent and catalyzing investment to startups. YAC connected VCs with one another to support their day to day function. Moving forward, YAC will do this for YACs in the entire venture ecosystem. 
  • During our pilot, this was restricted to the VC ecosystem. It has now been expanded to our continent’s entire startup & venture ecosystem.
  • All graduates from a CatalyzU Fellowship program (such as CatalyzU into Venture Capital – Fundamentals) are admitted in the CatalyzU Alumni Ecosystem and awarded Young African Catalysts status.
Do you offer scholarships / financial aid?
  • We offer need-based financial aid on a case-by-case basis. This process is determined post a candidate’s acceptance into the fellowship. 
  • The fundamentals edition of the CatalyzU Venture Capital Fellowship has a maximum scholarship of 20% of the total tuition fee. In other words, a candidate can receive a $100 scholarship, and would then owe $400’s in tuition to be paid ahead of the first day of lectures. 
  • We are working with Corporates for additional scholarships to the above – keep an eye on our socials for more! 
How much time is required per week?

Approximately 8 hours per week

Do you guarantee a job in the startup & venture ecosystem for graduates?
No, but our success rate currently stands at around 50% of graduates within the first 6 weeks post-graduation.