HAYS, Kan. -- Fort Hays State University will
host its second Hays Startup Weekend from April 4 to 6. Led by the university’s
College of Business and Entrepreneurship, Startup Weekend is an event designed
for entrepreneurs to meet, share ideas and launch new businesses.
The three-day event is open to anyone with a
great idea and the desire to make that idea a reality.
Startup Weekend "is a 54-hour, hands-on
experience where anyone interested in starting a business can find out if
startup ideas are viable," said Henry Schwaller, instructor of management
and marketing and leader of the Hays Startup Weekend.
"Beginning with open mic pitches on
Friday, attendees bring their best ideas and inspire others to join their teams,"
he said. "Saturday and Sunday focus on developing the business idea and
building a viable product. On Sunday evening, teams demo their prototypes and
receive valuable feedback from a panel of experts."
FHSU hosted its first Startup Weekend in
November 2013, and the response was overwhelmingly positive, he said, with 31
participants, including FHSU students and alumni, pitching 15 business ideas
and forming teams to transform those ideas into six unique businesses.
said that the success of the first Startup Weekend in rural Kansas encouraged
FHSU to host another one.
response to our first Startup Weekend was incredible," said Schwaller.
"All participants had a great experience and asked us to host another
event as soon as possible. Teams worked Friday evening to Sunday evening, and
several worked with few breaks and little sleep. FHSU faculty, alumni and local
business owners provided input, suggestions and advice to the teams as business
plans were developed. The event was challenging -- and it was fun, too."
FHSU President Edward H. Hammond will greet
participants on April 4, and a successful entrepreneur will welcome and challenge
participants. On Saturday, a volunteer team of business, legal and design
coaches will be available to provide assistance, advice and feedback to all
The event concludes on Sunday evening, April 6,
after participants present their business plans to a panel of judges.
Participants must register. Partial
scholarships will be available on a competitive basis for college students. Participant
presentations will be open to the public free of charge at 5 p.m. on Sunday, April
6. Judging and awards will begin at 6 p.m. Events will take place in McCartney
Hall on the Fort Hays State University campus.
prices range from $25 for student non-technical, designer and developer
participants to $50 for non-student developers, designers and non-technical
are software engineers, coders or developers or anyone who wants to participate
by writing code. Designers are anyone with a background in design, and the
non-technical category is for people whose backgrounds are in business,
marketing, public relations or who have other non-technical expertise. Students
in these categories must present valid student ID.
$25 ticket is also available for people who only want to attend Sunday's
demonstrations. Participants who have full-access tickets do not need to
purchase this ticket.
For additional information and registration,
visit the Hays Startup Weekend website: http://hays.startupweekend.org/
Startup Weekend is a global grassroots movement of active
and empowered entrepreneurs who are learning the basics of founding startups
and launching successful ventures. It is the largest community of passionate
entrepreneurs with over a thousand past events in 110+ countries around the
Startup Weekend is a global non-profit organization based in
Seattle, Wash. Local organizers around the world sponsor Startup Weekend events
that follow the same pattern -- 54-hour weekends of entrepreneurial innovation.