Startup Weekend East Lansing

    Friday, February 8 - 10, 2019

  1. Overview
  2. Schedule
  3. Judges
  4. Coaches and Mentors
  5. Organizing Team
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Startup Weekend East Lansing

Friday, February 8 - 10, 2019

Friday, February 8 - 10, 2019
Event starts at 6:30 pm

MSU Innovation Center
325 E. Grand River Ave.
300 Room
East Lansing, MI 48823

Buy Tickets

Your idea in 54 hours

 Do you have an idea you'd like to pursue or a problem you'd like to solve but don't know where to start or who to start with? 

Techstars Startup Weekend is the place to look for a team, create a prototype of your idea, validate your business idea, and receive feedback from experienced entrepreneurs, all in one weekend.

What do you need to bring?

Lots of energy! You'll pitch your own idea or listen to others, then vote on the most interesting ideas and form teams with diverse skill sets. You can come with friends, but you’ll get the full experience if you participate in separate teams. Remember, it’s all about the team.

Your idea should be something you have not previously worked on. The idea you pitch and the problem you set out to solve can span social, educational, financial, environmental, or other issues. Over the course of the weekend you'll be challenged to create a prototype of your MVP, or minimum viable product, that fits the needs of your target customer. You'll get feedback, iterate, and likely pivot your approach entirely! Important: You cannot have worked previously on your idea.

Techstars Startup Weekend is a full weekend long experience. Your ticket includes:

  • 6 full (and delicious) meals over the course of the weekend
  • Benefits and discounts from our global partners
  • One-on-one time with amazing mentors
  • A new network of developers, designers, and entrepreneurs eager, like you, to change the world.
  • All the internet and coffee you can consume.

Watch the video below to see what you can expect, and if you’re feeling inspired click on the “Buy Ticket” button now!

Still have questions, feel free to reach us at “”.

Don’t wait any longer and join the Techstars Startup Weekend movement!

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Friday February 8th

6:30 pm
Registration & Dinner
Arrive at the venue, get checked in, and grab some food.

7:00 pm
Review agenda for the weekend and introduce community leaders

7:30 pm
Pitches Start
Optionally line up to give your pitch

8:30 pm
Attendees vote for the top pitches

8:45 pm
Form Teams
Teams start forming and discussing ideas

9:00 pm
Begin Work
Start to formalize teams and take an inventory of skills. Be honest, and direct about what resources and skills are needed for the weekend. You may stay and work as late as the venue will allow

Saturday February 9th

9:00 am
Arrive, simple breakfast & coffee

12:00 pm

6:00 pm

Sunday February 10th

9:00 am
Arrive, simple breakfast & coffee

10:00 am
Tech Check
Test your presentation on the venue's computer and get familiar with the final presentation set-up.

12:00 pm

1:00 pm
Final Presentations

3:00 pm
Judging & Awards

3:30 pm

4:00 pm
Go Home!

Event Judges

Kyle Musser
Founder & CEO, Digital Conversion Labs


Mike Mudrey
Co-Founder, 601 Investments & Managing Director, World 50


Coaches and Mentors

Paul Jaques
Director of Student and Community Engagement

As the Director of Student and Community Engagement for Spartan Innovations, Paul Jaques works with the MSU undergraduate students on their business ideas and inventions to potentially get them to market. Paul is a founding partner of Pure Venture Partners and has also co-founded his own startups that include Career Search Consultants, a nationwide recruiting firm and Bio-Green Environmental, a biosolids management company. 

Ken Szymusiak
Entrepreneurship Professional

 Managing Director of the Institute for Entrepreneurship & Innovation (IEI) at the Broad College of Business at Michigan State University.  The IEI is charged with developing and supporting entrepreneurship within the student body of Michigan State University through the development of curriculum, events, business plan competitions and support structures. Additionally, Ken serves as adjunct faculty teaching introductory courses in entrepreneurship and business model creation. Prior to joining MSU, Ken served as Co-Director of the New Economy Division at the Lansing Economic Area Partnership (LEAP) where he co-managed a technology focused business incubator and worked to develop a culture of entrepreneurship in the greater Lansing region. Ken has been instrumental the development of Lansing Startup Weekends, The Hatching - Business Pitch Competition, and Spartan Innovations’ Startup Boot Camp. Ken received his MBA from Northwood University and his Bachelors in Urban and Regional Planning from Michigan State University.  Ken and his wife, Kristin, just recently sold his wife’s retail business after eight successful years. 

Jerry Norris
CEO, The Fledge


Alexa Jones
CEO at TheraB Medical

I graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Biosystems Engineering from Michigan State University in May 2014. Throughout my time at MSU, I developed a passion for entrepreneurship and women in leadership, stemming from my involvement within the Society of Women Engineers for over 5 years. 

My interest in biotechnology led me to become one of 3 co-founders of TheraB Medical (, an early-stage medical device start-up. Our first product is SnugLit, a wearable treatment for infant jaundice that promotes maternal-infant bonding, breastfeeding, and improved patient experience. We are currently seeking early stage funding as we continue development and initial production. 

From college graduation until late 2015, I worked in Foreign Exchange Operations at Goldman Sachs & Co., focusing on process optimization and risk management of the global FX trading/sales business. 

Interests: Entrepreneurship; Start-ups; Biotechnology; Women in STEM; Emerging technology in bioengineering; Financial Economics; International Relations

Jesse Flores
Chief Web Pro

Jesse is the founder of SuperWeb Pros, Cognite Labs and He is a results-driven leader with years of experience strengthening organizations via performance improvement initiatives, operations management, and technology-enabled innovation. He enjoys working with both technical and business stakeholders, taking the time to understand business needs and applying leading edge technologies to build important software. He loves startups and the entrepreneurial spirt, which prompted him to launch StartupLansing, which is dedicated to helping educate, connect, and promote startup activity in the Lansing region.

Nicholas Oertel
Attorney, Foster Swift Collins & Smith, PC

Nick is a business and securities lawyer, concentrating his practice in areas of start-ups/early stage companies, securities law and mergers and acquisitions. Nick is a shareholder in Foster Swift’s Lansing office and leads the firm’s start-up practice.

Reuben Levinsohn
Partner, Financial Advisor


Shay Manawar
Co-Director at Startup Grind Lansing

Shay is a graduate of Michigan State University in public policy, with a focus on urban redevelopment. Upon graduation, Shay had the opportunity to work at the Spartan Innovations for three years. The experience led him to work on several exciting “lean startup” projects. Shay’s core passion remains in law and public policy. Shay strongly believes that technology startups are soon going to disrupt several traditional public-interest industries, including K-12 education. His first half of the day is spent at Michigan Virtual, an Educational Technology organization. Whereas, the evenings are dedicated to community engagement through Startup Grind Lansing. Outside of work, Shay enjoys playing squash at the Michigan Athletic Club. 

Organizing Team

Techstars Startup Weekend Lansing is 100% led by volunteer community leaders.
Learn how to get involved here

  • Katie
  • NA
  • Women in


Lori Fischer
Assistant Director, Burgess Institute for Entrepreneurship & Innovation


Event Staff

Jeff Smith
Director, University Corporate Research Park at MSU Foundation


Lori Fischer
Assistant Director, Burgess Institute for Entrepreneurship & Innovation


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