Sunday, May 19, 2013
UAA College Students Build Web Startup In 72 Hours
UAA college students build a web startup business in 72 hours from scratch, in hopes of making it profitable.
Over the weekend, 12 University of Alaska, Anchorage college students from different backgrounds and skill sets participated in a workshop to bring a business startup website idea to reality.
It’s called 3DS Alaska and is part of a global non-profit organization that began just a few years ago to help college students explore their passions and learn how to build a web startup business from the bottom up. This is the first time the workshop has been held in Alaska.
“The idea is that they don’t have funding yet... they have an idea but they don’t know how to go from idea to an actual company,” said Jeremiah Dunham, founder of 3DS Alaska. “So this event is really intended to bridge that gap.”
Students brainstormed 12 ideas and narrowed it down to one they thought was viable: GearSpoke.
“The idea is a peer-to-peer equipment rental. The idea is that you have a snowmachine, ATV, or a boat that sits idle most the year. You’d like to actually make some money on the asset,” Dunham said.
The idea would be for owners to rent out their unused equipment for a designated amount of time to people who need equipment temporarily.
Students along with mentors built the website in a fast-paced setting, while learning valuable skills at the same time.
“Even your average college student, there’s a lot that they would pull out of it, group dynamics, leadership, plus any other stuff, business, marketing, legal, web development,” UAA student Matthew Sargent said.
The final stage of startup workshop gives students an opportunity to present the concept to investors and businesses for feedback and potential investment. Since the program began 13 startup businesses have been created, generating multi-million dollar investments.