Techstars Startup Weekend Durham, HBCUvc

    Friday, November 22 - 24, 2019

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  2. Schedule
  3. Organizing Team
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Techstars Startup Weekend Durham, HBCUvc

Friday, November 22 - 24, 2019

Friday, November 22 - 24, 2019
Event starts at 6:00 pm

North Carolina Central University
1801 Fayetteville St
Durham, NC 27707

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No Talk, All Action; Launch a Startup in 54 Hours!

  • 7 Catered & Delicious Meals Included + Snacks!
  • Face Time with Thought Leaders
  • Swag and Prizes!
  • Build your Network
  • Benefits & Discounts from Global Partners

About Techstars Startup Weekend HBCUvc 10-City Tour:

Over Startup Weekend you will experience the highs, lows, fun, and pressure that make up life at a startup. Additionally, you will have the unique opportunity to meet mentors, entrepreneurs, investors and leads of the broader startup ecosystem. So, what are you waiting for? Join us!

The hardest part of starting a startup is starting out. At Techstars Startup Weekend + HBCUvc 10-City Tour, you'll be immersed in the ideal environment for startup magic to happen.

Startup Weekend takes place over 54 hours, where attendees share ideas, form teams, and launch startups. This event provides a place for innovators and budding entrepreneurs to find co-founders, mentors, and momentum for their ideas.

Participation starts on Friday night where any attendee interested have 60 seconds to make a pitch (optional), the pitches are whittled down to the top ideas, and then teams form around the ideas to come out with several developed companies or projects. Join a team or pitch an idea! Finally, the weekend culminates with presentations and demos in front of an audience of judges and potential investors on Sunday.

Day 1: Meet, Pitch & Team Up
Day 2: Learn & Work
Day 3: Present & Celebrate

Event FAQs

Who can attend Techstars Startup Weekend HBCUvc 10-City Tour?

Startup Weekend is open to the public—18 and over. All disciplines are welcome; and the more diverse the better! Developers, marketers, MBAs, designers, makers, researchers, creatives, serial entrepreneurs...if you simply have a nw startup idea you want to work on and test out - join us! Anyone that has a passion for entrepreneurship is welcome!

A Startup Weekend team needs all sorts of people to be successful. Personalities and skill sets come together during the weekend to complement each other and get the project launched.

What if I don't have an idea to pitch? Can I still come to Techstars Startup Weekend HBCUvc 10-City Tour?

Emphatically YES!

Some people have dozens of ideas for products and services, others don't really have any (or so they think). But many times the "Idea Person" isn't the "Get It Done Person." Someone on the team needs to be the person who codes out the prototype, gets out of the building and elicits feedback from potential customers, and figures out how much it really is going to cost to build, market and sell the product. That person can be you!

How do I find an idea to pitch? 

Look around you! There are dozens of pain points people deal with every day...hundreds of inconveniences. Each of those "problems" is a potential business idea waiting to be launched. So, over the next several weeks, pay close attention to the world around you. What problem can you solve with a better, faster, or more sustainable solution?

Can I pitch my existing business?

This gets treated on a case-by-case basis, but generally speaking, if the idea has only been marginally explored and developed, you can pitch it at startup weekend. However, if you have a beta version released or you are already making revenue on the product/service, then the answer is "No!"

The core purpose of Startup Weekend is to bring a new idea to life in a new company...NOT to get free consulting work out of people so that you can move ahead with your idea. The best advice we can give is to check in with our Startup Weekend organizers. We can evaluate how far along your idea has been developed and if it can/should be pitched during the weekend. Also, if you do pitch the idea, make sure your team is aware of how far along in development it has come before the event. Honesty and openness is the best policy.

What if my idea doesn't get selected?

The purpose of the Friday voting and crowdsourcing isn't to exclude certain ideas, but simply to highlight the most popular and high-potential pitches and end up with a manageable number of teams, ensuring that each team has a variety of backgrounds and skills.

If your idea isn't selected, don't be discouraged! Walk around and speak to your fellow attendees and find a project that interests you. Join a team where you can be excited by the idea being worked on and where you know your skills can help the team be successful.

Lastly, keep pitching the idea! Find out why people weren't interested. Was it the idea or the pitch that didn't make the cut? Maybe you just didn't get your message across clearly enough. Is there someone in the crowd who was torn between your project and another project, and then simply had to pick one? There has been more than one company born out of a failed Startup Weekend pitch.

What should I bring?

+Laptop (optional)
+Power cord
+Business Cards
+Lots of creative energy!

How do I prepare?

+Do some research: Background information will give you a better understanding of the problem you are trying to solve.
+Practice your pitch: You'll have 60 seconds to persuade other attendees to join your team. Make it clear, concise, and convincing!
+Get plenty of rest.
+Encourage a friend to register: Events are better with good company!

What resources/assistance is provided over the weekend?

A key part is the valuable advice and assistance by the event's Speakers, Mentors, and Coaches. In the spirit of "No Talk, All Action" we try to keep talks short and sweet, focusing on practical issues (e.g., how to give a persuasive pitch or best approaches to customer discovery) that can actually help you and your team better achieve your weekend goals. Mentors and Coaches, community experts in various fields ranging from entrepreneurship to software development, dedicate their time to providing advice and actually rolling up their sleeves and working with teams.

How do teams address the issue of Intellectual Property/ownership?

As with any startup, the team decides. Startup Weekend HBCUvc 10-City Tour's Organizing Team, Coaches, and Mentors do not take part in the signing of any legal documents at the event. While Mentors with legal backgrounds are often present and able to give general advice, they are not permitted to give specific legal counsel. While it doesn't hurt to be clear about your individual expectations from the start, we've found that teams who don't spend time addressing this issue until it matters (e.g., ownership of a tangible product) are much more productive and successful than those who do.

What are we supposed to have accomplished by the end of the weekend?

While there are no specific requirements in terms of what teams should have accomplished by the end of the weekend, it's in your best interest to plan your execution around what you'll be judged for on Sunday:

  • Customer Validation (did you vet your product/service?)
  • Execution and Design (what did you build?)
  • Business Model (do you have a plan for the future?)

As far as presenting goes, some of the most common presentations include any combination of the following (in no particular order):

  • Wireframes or fully developed website / app;
  • Mobile Apps (from mock-ups to skeletons to fully functional);
  • Slide Decks (PowerPoint, Keynote, Prezi, etc.);
  • Videos (product demonstrations, etc.);
  • Live product demos;
  • Skits

Where is the event taking place?

Startup Weekend HBCUvc 10-City Tour is being held at multiple HBCU campuses from October 2019 - April 2020.

See what it's all about

Learn More


Friday November 22nd

6:00 pm
Arrive at the venue and get checked in

7:00 pm
Dinner & Networking
Eat food, share ideas, practice pitches, get to know fellow participants

7:20 pm
Welcome & Speakers
Review agenda for the weekend and introduce speakers, coaches, and community leaders

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

9:00 pm
Attendees vote for the top pitches

9:15 pm
Form Teams
Teams start forming and discussing ideas

10:00 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 November 23rd

9:00 am
Arrive, simple breakfast & coffee

9:30 am
Begin Work
Teams formed and setting up workspace for the weekend

12:00 pm

1:00 pm
After-lunch check-in, status reports, call for help

2:00 pm
Coach Meetings
Coaches help teams one-on-one. They are here to help!

6:30 pm

7:30 pm
After-dinner check-in, status reports, call for help

10:00 pm
Finished for the day. You may stay and work as late as the venue will allow

Sunday November 24th

9:00 am
Arrive, simple breakfast & coffee

10:00 am
Coaches arrive. Final opportunity to ask questions

12:00 pm

12:30 pm
Coach Meetings
Coaches arrive… ASK QUESTIONS

3:00 pm
Presentation Prep & Tech Check
Final hours of worktime should be focused on perfecting your presentation, tech-check for final presentations also takes place

4:00 pm

5:00 pm
Final Presentations

7:30 pm
Judging & Awards

8:30 pm

9:00 pm
Go Home!

Organizing Team

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

  • Lyndon
  • Monica
  • Steven
  • Undi


Monica Wheat
Founder @ Venture Catalysts & Managing Director @ Backstage Capital

Monica Wheat is a Strategist, Educator, and Venture Developer. She is the past Co-Founder and Partner of Pixel DSi, a digital strategy consultancy and Parallel Ventures, an incubator focused on branded innovation partnerships and startup ecosystem development. Ms. Wheat is also the Founder and Executive Director of Digerati Girls, Inc. / Digerati Kids, a non-profit that has helped over 5,500 Detroit-area students gain skills and an introduction to digital technology, innovation, and entrepreneurship.

Ms. Wheat has extensive experience in program management focused on digital, social, and economic development efforts. Ms. Wheat is extremely invested in the Detroit startup community, including her roles as Lead of Detroit Startup Week, Curator for Startup Digest Detroit/Ann Arbor, Director of Startup Next Detroit, Organizer/Facilitator of Startup Weekend, and fmr. Co-Lead of Women 2.0 Detroit.

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