A sell-out crowd of more than 165 new students attended the first-ever Techstars Blackstone LaunchPad Startup Weekend at Syracuse University this past weekend. Over the course of the weekend they overcame the hardest part of starting up — which is to take the very first step and start out. The fast-paced, food-fueled event attracted first-time student innovators — many of whom were freshmen and sophomore, to learn more about innovation and entrepreneurship, test out ideas, meet new people, and engage with an amazing campus and global network that provides support for aspiring entrepreneurs. From 32 venture ideas on Friday night, students winnowed down to nine final teams who worked together to validate their ideas, design and build a MVP, and pitch for $1,000 in cash prizes provided by event co-sponsor, the Martin J. Whitman School of Management.
The event was organized by the LaunchPad at SU Libraries, and supported by a team of prize-winning SU student entrepreneurs who founded successful student startups, and who served as mentors and judges (see top photo).
Blackstone LaunchPad Startup Weekend was geared towards students who want to gain entrepreneurial experience, even if they have little to no previous background in starting a company.
The first-place winning team, HAUS, was awarded $850 for its concept for a IoT smart humidifier device.
The second-place winning team, Eco Bamboo living, was awarded $250 for its concept to design and build energy-efficient, sustainable bamboo buildings for the residential and commercial real estate market.