A 6-week virtual program for a select group of people who are considering building a new startup.

Explore entrepreneurship while building a peer community of exceptional founders.​

Whether you’re working full-time or are wrapping up a degree, Breakout is designed to fit with your busy schedule. 

The free program includes both a General Track and a Bio Track, specifically designed for those who are interested in life science startups. We welcome founders from all industries to apply for the waitlist

During 6 weeks you will:

  • Validate Your Startup Idea ​
  • Discover How to Form a Company
  • Understand Venture Capital
  • Learn from Successful Founders
  • Join a Community of Entrepreneurs
  • Create an Action Plan


Breakout is an interactive experience crafted to help you learn by doing. 

We created the sessions to include a balance of informative content, peer support, and personalized coaching from experts.

The free program is highly selective and only includes space for a tight group of founders.

Virtual Sessions
12 - 1:30 pm ET

June 11th

Kickoff — How do I navigate the VC and startup landscape right now?

June 18th

Session 1 — Is my idea any good and am I ready to build a startup?

June 25th

Session 2 — How do I meet a co-founder, form my company and protect my idea?

July 2nd

Session 3 — How do the nuts & bolts of VC work?

July 9th

Session 4 — How do I develop an investor pitch?

July 13th

Office Hours — How should I use my next six months?


Peer Groups — Meet with your curated group each week at a time that works for you.

Time Commitment

Breakout is intended to minimize your commitment while maximizing your exposure to startups. We ask that you commit to spending 2 hours each week with us, across core programming. 

Breakout also includes several optional workshops, whiteboard sessions, and founder talks with experienced entrepreneurs who have launched and scaled companies.

Jamie Goldstein

partner, Pillar VC

Sarah Hodges

Partner, Pillar VC

Brian Baynes

Co-Founder, Petri

Russ Wilcox

Partner, Pillar VC

Tony Kulesa

Co-founder, petri
Jaye Profile

Jaye Goldstein

head of program, petri


Breakout is a joint venture hosted by Pillar VC and Petri. We back seed-stage founders, and have decades of experience building consumer and enterprise companies worth billions in SaaS, healthcare, robotics, logistics, fintech and bio.


All Speakers
General Track
Bio Track

Gail Goodman

CEO, Constant Contact
CPO, Pepperlane

Emily Leproust

CEO, Twist Bioscience

Tony Liu

CEO, JobGet

Alec Nielsen

CEO, Asimov

Dan Pregibon

Head of Platform Discovery and Technology, Repertoire Immune Medicines / Co-founder, CTO, Firefly Bioworks

Reshma Shetty

Co-Founder, Ginkgo Bioworks

Peter Smith

CEO, Edgewise Networks

Ellen Rubin

CEO Clearsky Data Aquired by Amazon

Corey Thomas

CEO, Rapid7

Apply to Join the Waitlist

Our application is simple and clear; it should take less than 20 minutes to complete.

You might already have an idea. You might not. That’s okay — Breakout is a chance to explore and learn.

Strong candidates will be invited to meet with a member of the Petri or Pillar VC teams for a 15 minute video screening before gaining acceptance to the program.

If you are interested in the Bio Track, please identify your interest in the application. 

Who should apply

Breakout is designed for anyone interested in entrepreneurship, including:

  • Students and faculty members
  • Leaders inside companies ready for a new challenge
  • Designers and developers inspired by a new idea

…and anyone considering the leap.


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