iVenture Begins

iVenture directors planning out space before the program begins

As another summer rolls around, iVenture has kicked off its 10-week startup accelerator welcoming 15 new talented student ventures to the iVenture family. On Thursday and Friday, the iVenture team, with the help of some student volunteers, transformed the architecture classrooms in Temple Hoyne Buell Hall into a co-working space complete with couches, inspirational posters, and an assortment of plants picked out by our Outreach Fellow/ self-proclaimed plant acquirer, Chuck Miller. With such a diverse group of students and a diverse set of ventures, we were very excited to start the summer off right on Monday.

Bright and early at 9 in the morning, the students rolled in grabbing their coffees and bagels and began introducing themselves and their ventures to one another. After everyone filled up on food and got caffeinated, the day started with a series of activities intended to build a sense of community and fellowship amongst the ventures. Such activities included trying to fit the origin story of your name into 6 words (which was a lot harder than it sounds) and an intense game of rock, paper, scissors, iVenture.  



Later in the day, the ventures listened to their first guest speaker, a former iVenture participant and the CEO/founder of PSYONIC, Aadeel Akhtar. Akhtar gave an inspirational presentation about the origins of his company and how he overcame the hurdles of starting his prosthetic robotic arm venture. Afterward, students got to ask Akhtar questions and shake hands with the robotic arm.

Check out his company (PSYONIC) here.

We ended the day with more introduction exercises that dug a little more deeper than just what our interests and ventures were. One of the exercises even had the ventures thrown in imaginary jail (which was the space underneath the desks) in which we had to reveal our greatest quality and what we wished people would notice about ourselves when they first meet us. The goal of these exercises, to create relationships amongst the students, was achieved. Tredayne Cabanlit from the venture Rising Sprouts said, “It felt like my ‘clump’ (his jail mates) were my long lost friends and not people I just met”.

After such a productive and exciting day of getting to know such a diverse group of people, all of us on the iVenture team are looking forward to watching the development of these individual students and their ventures as the summer progresses.

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