How might we provide students with the opportunity to learn how to launch a successful startup?
More than twenty high school students attended a three day crash course of all things startup–the good, the bad, the so-obsessed-with-your-idea-you-forget-to-eat at Boise’s inaugural Startup Weekend. Startup Weekend is a global program designed to equip budding entrepreneurs with the tools they need to be successful.
The weekend kicked off with a speed-pitch. Students brought their own business, social venture, nonprofit, and product ideas and shared them in rapid fire pitches. The top five ideas as voted by peers became the team topics for the weekend. Students self-selected into teams around their favorite idea and began the entrepreneurial process. Students heard from experts in the community about what it takes to be an entrepreneur, how to use the business model canvas, how to critically consider customer feedback, and what makes a great pitch. They worked through the weekend under the guidance of a community coach to bring the student idea to life. Startup Weekend ended in a “Shark Tank” style competition, with teams pitching their ideas to a panel of judges representing various sectors across the Treasure Valley community.
The five teams that participated in Startup Weekend were all invited to continue working on their idea with the help of New Venture Labs. The winning team was invited to join One Stone’s Solution Lab to build on their idea and start making it a reality. Students reported enjoying the team aspect of Startup Weekend as well as learning about local startups and community involvement.
In Their Own Words:
“I gained lots of knowledge and insight on the world of business and startups, as well as the inspiration to potentially pursue heading my own startup.”
“I gained a better understanding of what it takes to run your own business, as well as confidence in being able to run my own business in the future. Also I gained some pretty amazing friendships from One Stone’s Startup Weekend and great connections to people who can help me in the future.”