Heading to Training Camp: Supercharging Student Entrepreneurs

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On November 7 and 8, the Blackstone Charitable Foundation and Techstars will host the 2018 Blackstone LaunchPad Techstars Training Camp (“LaunchPad Training Camp”) in New York City.  Joining them from Syracuse University will be Kevin Rieck and Tay Lotte, co-founders of RAVLE, and Elizabeth Tarangelo, co-founder of In-Spire, along with SU’s LaunchPad executive director Linda Hartsock.

During this two-day conference, top collegiate entrepreneurs from the Blackstone LaunchPad, powered by Techstars global network across the United States and the UK, will have the opportunity to access mentoring and content to further develop their businesses. Together, Blackstone and Techstars aim to empower the next generation of entrepreneurs and give college students the critical skills to thrive in the labor market.

As today’s students look for career opportunities, more and more are eager to explore the entrepreneurial path through  Blackstone LaunchPad, which offers coaching, ideation and venture creation support for students globally.  More than 3,100 students at Syracuse University are participants in the Blackstone LaunchPad program, which currently is based at 20 universities.

This year the Blackstone Charitable Foundation and Techstars, a global startup accelerator and mentorship network, announced a partnership that is helping improve the chances of success for LaunchPad participants by providing them resources seldom available to collegiate entrepreneurs. Techstars provides LaunchPad participants access to their network of over 10,000 mentors, invites to signature events and education through their content and startup services. The program takes Techstars’ proven methodology for startups and uses it to help collegiate entrepreneurs not only take their startups to the next level, but navigate the complex landscape of fundraising, recruiting, and other entrepreneurial pain points.

The training camp will give these rising stars a full day of curated content and intensive mentorship and will culminate in 10 of the 60 students being selected for a virtual 10-week intensive cohort. The goal of the camp is to expand opportunities for the students and help them get ready for their next growth step.

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Opening speaker on November 7 will be SU alumn Josh Aviv, founder of SparkCharge, who “graduated” from the Blackstone LaunchPad at Syracuse University.  Aviv won first place as a student in last year’s Blackstone LaunchPad – Techstars Training Camp Demo Day, and got admitted and graduated from Techstars Boston, and recently won $1M from the 43North startup competition.