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Venture Lab is Wharton’s entrepreneurship hub for Penn students interested in innovation. Credit: Abhiram Juvvadi

Penn ranked No. 4 in PitchBook’s annual ranking of global universities by number of undergraduate startup founders, rising one spot from last year.

The rankings, published on Sept. 12, are based on the number of alumni startup founders that attended each university, separated by undergraduate, graduate, and MBA degrees. The number of companies started and the amount of capital raised from 2013 to 2023 are also included in the ranking. The study draws from data of over 150,000 founders who have received venture capital funding.

At the undergraduate level, Penn ranked fourth with 1,083 founders, 993 companies, and $34 billion in capital raised. Wharton’s MBA program ranked third with 1,043 founders, 962 companies, and $37.7 billion raised; while Penn’s graduate schools excluding Wharton were ranked 15th with 525 founders, 473 companies and $15 billion raised.

The ranking made note of Thrasio, OpenAI, Dream Sports, Ninja Van, and Attentive as the Penn-founded startups that had raised the most capital over the decade-long time period.

Stanford University was ranked first for most undergraduate startup founders, followed by University of California, Berkeley and Harvard University. Tel Aviv University was ranked first when excluding American universities and ranked seventh overall. 

PitchBook also published a ranking based on female founders’ outcomes. In this ranking, Penn also ranked fourth with 177 female founders, 174 companies, and $3 billion raised, while Wharton’s MBA program ranked third with 155 founders, 148 companies, and $2.5 billion raised. 

Penn offers a variety of resources for students interested in creating startups or entering the venture capital industry. 

For example, Venture Lab — Wharton’s entrepreneurship hub — focuses on serving all students at Penn who are interested in innovation. It hosts an annual Startup Challenge, which awards prizes to winning startups, and regularly hosts networking events with venture capital firms.

One 2018 ranking, TechCrunch found that Penn had the third highest number of alumni in venture capitalism.