Meet your future team
Once you become a Fellow, it’s time to find a job! We don’t place Fellows in specific roles—it will be your responsibility to steer the interview process, and your success will depend on your efforts alone. To date, all Fellows who have actively engaged in the interview process have received offers from at least one of our company partners, and Fellows often have the chance to choose between multiple offers.
That said, we’re here to support you from start to finish—once you’re accepted, it’s our number one priority to help you find your future team. We’ve coached your predecessors through hundreds of emails, interviews, and offer decisions. At every step of the process, we’ll be there.
Do your research
After you accept your offer, you’ll gain access to Match, our hiring portal just for Fellows. It’s where you’ll research jobs and companies, pitch yourself to startups of your choice, manage your interview process, and keep VFA in the loop along the way.
When looking into open positions, we recommend making an effort to not get hung up on the industry or job title—there’s a reason we work with every company partner, and they all have something to offer. Instead, think about company culture, room to grow and develop new skill sets, and the potential to find a mentor you connect to and respect.
When you’ve found a few companies that seem like they might be a good fit, you’ll connect with them on Match. There’s no need for a formal cover letter—we’ve already vetted you, so you’ll find fewer barriers than a typical job search. Instead, you’ll write to each prospective employer and tell them in a short paragraph how you could help them grow.
At our regional job fairs, you’ll meet companies you’re already interested in and some that you weren’t previously considering. We encourage every Fellow to attend at least one job fair. From here on out, every interview process will vary. In some cases, a meeting at a job fair could lead to an offer, and in other cases you might continue to explore companies in VFA Match.
If you pitched to a startup or met one at a job fair and they’re interested in what you bring to the table, they’ll get in touch to schedule the next conversation. Each company has a slightly different hiring process—no two phone interview stages will look exactly the same.
After the phone interview stage, it’s time for a site visit. Your site visit is more than an in-person interview—it’s a chance to explore your potential future home. Once you meet with the team, check out the office, and get a sense of what your day-to-day might be like, you’ll have time to get a sense of the city, and consider its potential as your future home.
Will VFA place me at a startup or in a city?
Nope! We understand that finding the right job is a complicated thing, and we want every Fellow to find an opportunity that suits them. For that reason, every Fellow drives their own job search process.
What if I only want to work in a specific type of company or role?
We want each Fellow to find the right job for them, so we don’t place anyone in jobs. Each Fellow is in charge of their own job search process. That said, not all of our current company partners are hiring every year (they are mostly small startups after all), so we encourage our Fellows to cast a wide net and be open to a range of companies and roles.
How does VFA choose its company partners?
Our dedicated Company Partnerships team develops relationships with each company, usually through on-site visits and referrals from local partners. We prioritize leadership, relative financial stability, and a high-potential working and learning environment. That said, these are startups, and things change quickly.
What kind of role will I have at my company?
Fellows fill entry-level startup roles. The actual jobs, responsibilities, and skills of an entry-level employee can often evolve based on the company’s changing needs and direction. Roles include account management, content production, marketing, web development, engineering, data analysis, social media management, sales and business development, operations, or often, some combination of these. No matter the job title, at many startups, team members end up working on a variety of projects and functions, and what Fellows work on in the first several months may not be what they’re working on several months later. When you’re interviewing for different roles, we’ll encourage you to ask the right questions to figure out what your job will look like, and what opportunities you’ll have for growth.
What type of salary can I expect?
Fellows can typically expect a starting salary of at least $38,000 per year, with some companies offering equity/options. Most Fellows will receive their first paycheck between late August and late September, depending on the payroll practices of their startup. From there, many Fellows earn raises once they prove themselves and add real value to their team—provided they’re excelling and the company is growing.