Press Release

DU Alum Redefines Sharing Contact Info

ALUMNI ALERT: Michael Juliano of Think You redefines the way we customize and share contact information via mobiles phone and now the wrist.

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MikeJuliano

Think You, Inc.,  a company that streamlines how people share contact information and connect with one another, today announced the release of youPass for Android and Apple Watch. youPass for Apple Watch brings the convenience of linking with people and sharing contact information right to the user's wrist. The Android version works just as seamlessly as the iOS version, but has received significant updates to streamline the user experience.

“With youPass on two new platforms we are now reaching a larger audience and sharing contact information in new and unique ways,” said Mike Juliano, Draper University Alumni and CEO & Founder of Think You, “We’re incredibly excited to welcome Android users for the first time and explore a whole new dimension of interaction with Apple Watch.”

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The app is easy to use, individuals simply scan a code on a mobile phone or Apple Watch to instantly link with people they meet. Users may also send a link to anyone with a mobile device—with or without the youPass app installed. The app can also send a personalized vCard with contact details that have been customized by the sender.

“Mike and his team have created a unique and centralized way for people to customize the personal contact and social networking information that they share with other people,”

said Tim Draper, founder of Draper Associates/DFJ/Draper University.

“His vision and gusto embody what we try to teach at Draper University. Think big, go all out and never be afraid of failure. Redefining the way we connect with one another beyond the exchange of a phone number or email address will broaden the depth of our contacts -- something a business card cannot do.”

youPass for iOS and Android also received significant updates to streamline the user experience. With youPass v2.4, the core functions (scan, share and connect) are brought to the forefront of the UI and are accessible via simple swipes. In addition, youPass v2.4 adds support for additional ways to connect including social networks, messenger and video communication platforms. These include Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, Pinterest, Snapchat, Vine, Tumblr, YouTube, Skype, Kik, Google+, About.Me, Tsū, Ello, ooVoo, SoundCloud, Flickr and many more.

For the original version, visit PRWeb.

Learn more about Mike and his journey to Draper University.

Draper University Teams Up With Indiegogo Life to Crowdfund Tuition

Draper University has partnered with Indiegogo Life to enable Draper University applicants to raise funds for their tuition.

At our site, you can see campaigns from budding entrepreneurs who explain why they want to attend Draper University and what business they plan to launch. Through these campaigns, we’ve gained many interesting insights about raising money on Indiegogo and how to catalyze your community.

Learn how to rally your network.

Launch a fundraiser that will personally invest your network in your success and entrepreneurial pursuits. Picture Piotr Yordanov, a Fall 2013 Draper University Alumni. Aside from his charismatic video shoot, Piotr leveraged his skills as a software engineer and website designer to incentivize his network to donate to his campaign. By knowing your strengths and skillsets, you can determine what exactly you need from others to succeed. Donors were more likely to donate to Piotr’s campaign knowing they would receive a “free” one-hour tech consultation.

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Draper University founder & famous Venture Capitalist Tim Draper strongly recommends the ability to discuss your personal strengths and weaknesses. Are you good at writing? Spend extra time crafting your pitch text. Are you great at interacting with people? Be in charge of responding to comments. In the world of business and startups, it’s vital to own what you are great at, and create a diverse team that fills in the areas you could use some help to help your campaign stand out.

Create a buzz-worthy story.

Similar to when starting a business, determining who your contributors will be and where to find them is essential to meeting your goal. Are your donors your Facebook friends and family? LinkedIn connections & colleagues? Tech lovers in the Twitterverse? Once you’ve tested where the majority of your donors are, you can more efficiently use your time by putting forth effort in these specific areas. Make sure you know where the first 30% of your funds are coming from before launching your campaign. If you aren’t confident you can hit this within the first few days, adjust your goal accordingly.

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The more compelling your story and the more convincing your business idea, the more likely you are to reach your funding goal. Your audience needs to know why your school tuition will enable your business, and the message should be powerful and clear. Your donors will want to know that their money will empower you personally, but more importantly that you’ll make a big difference in the long run. Being transparent is crucial to the success of your fundraiser. A breakdown of exactly how the funds will be used can be helpful for instilling a sense of trust.

Piotr tugged at the heartstrings of his audience by explaining his mission and making his audience feel a part of it, too. The call-to-action on Piotr’s page states this clearly, “I have a dream, that one day, the middle-east, will see entrepreneurial heroes. Together we make this dream come true!”

Get a taste of raising capital.

Crowdfunding tuition on Indiegogo Life can also be great experience for pitching your business to investors., except your contributors don’t expect anything but your happiness and success in return! Upload a video, share your story, and let your personality shine. It should be obvious at this point that launching a strong crowdfunding campaign is very similar to launching a business and can be a strong proof point that demonstrates you have what it takes to be a successful entrepreneur.

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Indiegogo Life will provide you fantastic knowledge for developing a network and raising capital. It will push you to think through the finer details of your business plan and polish an idea that’s ready for market. If your campaign is successful, you will have sharpened your startup idea and established your goals before you even step through our doors.

We encourage all future students to take advantage of this opportunity. With an effective crowdfunding campaign under your belt, you’ll hit the ground running when it comes time to pitch your ideas to private investors.

Watch the video on how to raise funds for education at Draper University!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FzdteVw76dA#action=share

Why Audiences Love Entrepreneur Reality Shows Like ‘Shark Tank’

TONY CAPASSO, ERIN BRADY, CARLY MARTINETTI, SHAWN ISAAC, MALCOLM TYSON, SEQUOIA BLODGETT (DRAPER UNIVERSITY ENTREPRENEUR IN RESIDENCE), TIM DRAPER (DRAPER UNIVERSITY FOUNDER), CHARLIE TAIBI (DRAPER UNIVERSITY PROGRAM DIRECTOR), ANA MARTE, JOHN FRYE, KEYONNA PATTERSON, DAVID KRAM, SHARON WINTER
Re-blogged from  of NerdWallet

You’re probably familiar with “Shark Tank,” the ABC show where real entrepreneurs pitch their ideas to a panel of equity investors. Since the program first aired in 2009, a slew of similar shows have popped up, including “Food Fortunes” on Food Network and “The Profit” on CNBC. ABC also launched the spinoff “Beyond the Tank” in May. The latest entrepreneurial reality show, “Startup U,” premieres on ABC Family in August. It will follow students at Draper University, a seven-week entrepreneur education program in Silicon Valley.

“Shark Tank” averaged 7.5 million viewers in its most recent season, its sixth, according to the Nielsen Co. Why do entrepreneurial reality shows resonate with viewers? We put that question to some business and media experts.

They inspire entrepreneur hopefuls

Reality shows about entrepreneurs are a form of “success porn,” says Paul Levinson, a communications and media studies professor at Fordham University in New York. Rather than depicting contestants becoming millionaires by chance, these shows feature entrepreneurs earning investments with their novel ideas and clever inventions.

“This appeals to fans who have an idea or two about how to become rich, which they’re sure would work if only they could find the right listener,” Levinson says via email.

They teach lessons about entrepreneurship

Startup UWatching shows like “Shark Tank” and “The Profit” can teach wannabe entrepreneurs about equity capital and how to make an effective pitch. Venture capitalist Tim Draper, founder of Draper University, says “Startup U” will reveal new marketing techniques and ways of thinking about finance, in addition to showing how entrepreneurs can be successful working in teams.

Viewers “are going to learn that a lot of entrepreneurship is just taking that first step and just doing it,” Draper tells NerdWallet. “Then they’re going to learn that it’s hard.”

They give viewers a vicarious thrill

A lot of people view entrepreneurship as a skill that you have to be born with, and that therefore is unattainable to them, says Berna Aksu, a business professor at Saint Mary’s College of California, in Moraga. Watching reality shows like “Shark Tank” lets audiences experience the entrepreneurial dream vicariously without actually taking the risk, she says.

“When people can’t do something themselves,” she says, “they still like to see other people succeed.”

They advertise cool new products

Shows like “Shark Tank” are as much a marketing tool as a funding opportunity for entrepreneurs. “What better commercial than network TV?” says Lisa Hennessy. Hennessy is executive producer of the NBC weight-loss reality show “The Biggest Loser” and co-founder of DreamJobbing.com, a site that advertises unique, short-term job opportunities, such as a photojournalist stint in Norway or three weeks with the Nitro Circus.

Products that gained popularity on “Shark Tank” include Ava the Elephant, an animal-shaped medicine dropper for kids; ChordBuddy, a guitar attachment for novice musicians; and the Squatty Potty, a bathroom step stool designed to promote “healthy toilet posture,” as its website says.

They show underdogs beating the odds

Although entrepreneurship has grown in popularity, it’s still not easy, says Marci Weisler, a creator of “Queen Bee,” a show featuring female entrepreneurs on Ora TV. Audiences enjoy rooting for entrepreneurs’ pursuit of the American dream, she says.

“Shows like these show the struggles and successes,” she says by email, “and that average people have a chance to do extraordinary things and create big business.”

Teddy Nykiel is a staff writer at NerdWallet, a personal finance website. Email:teddy@nerdwallet.com. Twitter: @teddynykiel.

 

Don't miss the Startup U series premiere Tuesday, August 11th at 10pm|9c on ABC Family!

Bloomberg Radio: Tim Draper

Bloomberg Radio Interview

Cory Johnson & Carol Massar speak with Venture Capitalist Tim Draper.

[embed]https://soundcloud.com/raperniversity/bloomberg-radio-interview-with-tim-draper-cory-johnson-carol-massar[/embed]

Cory: Wait, before we bring Tim Draper in Carol, do you know where I was July 3rd in the afternoon? Tim Draper Does.

Carol: Tim, do tell. Where was Cory Johnson on the afternoon of July 3rd?

Cory: Yes, I was lecturing at Draper University.

Tim:  Oh of course you were— and you were awesome! They loved you.

Cory: He was asleep at that time… it was really interesting, Tim! Thank you for the invitation to do that. Tell us about Draper University.

Tim: It’s an amazing place. The biggest surprise is that it worked. I started the school 4 years ago to attract entrepreneurs from all over the world who wanted to learn how to really be an entrepreneur, or at least get that wherewithal to become. So we started this school, Draper University of Heroes, and it’s amazing the students its attracted. Cory, I bet you’ve never spoken in a class where they are so dynamic and so dedicated to learning.

Cory: It was interesting, Tim. So I gave a modified version of a speech I’ve given at the Haas School of Business in Berkeley, and at the Knight School of Business at Stanford... both  graduate classes. Both those were very different. But this was very different, too. These people were really engaged in wanting to be entrepreneurs.

I talked a lot about accounting in this lecture which they weren’t especially interested in. They liked the tales of woe and intrigue. But these were people who were trying to take the discussion I had, and put it in their context of wanting to be startup entrepreneurs. Every single one of them.

Tim: Yeah, and that’s the cut. It’s getting harder to get into Draper University but it is a school that has some of the most dynamic, driven, entrepreneurial-minded people in the world. It’s something we’ve trained our admissions office to look for. We’re getting better and better at it. It’s really exciting! We take about 70 students per quarter, so we’ve had about 400 students. They’ve started about 200 companies, come from over 40 countries.

This most recent session is 70 students over 33 countries. The word has really gotten out. It’s a really exciting place to be. It’s only a 6-8 week program. If you’re a true entrepreneur, you don’t want to dedicate 4 years to become educated. You want to do it as quickly as possible and get out there and make your business happen.

Carol: So Tim, this is your Innovate Your State Program at Draper, right?

Tim: No, Innovate Your State is another program. Innovate Your State spun out of some things I saw. What it really is, is a crowd-sourced opportunity. This first one is for Californians to crowd-source and come up with new ideas they want placed on the ballot, or that they want me to fund, or me to donate to. We had 400 submissions, now we’re down to the Sweet 16. That group is really innovative.

They’ve come up with some amazing ideas, some that are Venture Governance. I’ve funded two of them now. One was called “Open Gov”, which was all about transparency in government. Another is called PlaceVote, which allows a Congress Person to put the bills in front of them out to their constituents and have constituents vote on them.

Long term, this could be a situation where the Congressmen gets his $175,000 a year, and his 5 Million Dollar slush fund, and his 50 staffers… but all he has to do is push the button that says which way his population voted on something. So it’s a really interesting and innovative idea.

There are some of the 16 that are quite interesting. They are really targeting getting on the ballot in 2016 or 2018, and we are figuring out if we want to take one and put it on the ballot in California.

Cory: And who is the “We”, Tim?

Tim: I have a team that does this for me, it’s the same team that helped me with trying to get Six Californias on the ballot.

Cory: Which is a whole other fascinating thing we can talk about another time. Your unconventional interest in politics is very interesting to me. I feel like this is the season when political candidates are running up and down Highway 280 asking every VC and CEO and anyone else with a thick wallet for money.

Yet, you’ve taken an approach that is very different saying, “I want much more dramatic change than picking one of the candidates running for one of the two major parties.”

Tim: I’m a believer that we really need strong structural change throughout the entire country, but specifically in California where we’ve gone from 1st to 47th in K-12 Education, and 1st to 50th as the least transparent State in the Union, and we’ve gone from 1st to 50th as the worst state to do business in. Our infrastructure spending has gone from 26% down to 3%.

There are some real problems in California, and the costs are higher, and the value we’re getting as constituents is less. There’s a real need of something structural to change. There have been some great Goveners put in all the way through.

Cory: Tim Draper of DFJ, Venture Capitalist and big thinker, thank you very much. Always a pleasure talking to you.

Tune into Bloomberg Radio Shows by visiting here.

ALUMNI ALERT: Pundit Selected to Disney Accelerator, Techstars

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Today Techstars announce the 2015 participants of Disney Accelerator, powered by Techstars.

Draper University Spring 2015 Alumni Billy Shaw Susanto, Founder of Pundit, was selected and funded as 1 in 10 media tech startups in the world to the program. Pundit will participate in a three-month mentorship and investment program, which begins July 9 this year and concludes with a demo day on October 6.

The ten companies in this year’s program represent a diverse cross-section of technologies, and we are inspired by their visions for the applicability of these technologies in the media space.

Pundit & the 9 other startups will receive up to $120,000 in investment capital to develop their ideas, along with mentor support from top Disney executives, including Chairman and CEO Robert A. Iger, and leaders from Pixar, Marvel, Lucasfilm, ESPN and Walt Disney Imagineering, among others. Mentors will also include other entertainment industry leaders, venture capitalists and Techstars’ extensive network of entrepreneurs, investors and executives.

Draper University supported Pundit’s early user adoption by supplying a network of influential creators to host ‘Ask Me Anything’ sessions (AMAs) on the platform including Miss USA Erin Brady - fully supporting the company’s vision to be a true media tech company, far beyond yet another “social networking app.”

 

[Tweet "GET READY: Pundit is relaunching on Monday, July 13 on the App Store."]

 

Congratulations, Billy! We're proud of you!

 

For full articles & features:

Loopd Lands Additional $1.5M to Power Corporate Events Analytics

Tim Draper, Marc Benioff, and Mesh Ventures provide followup funding to help Loopd expand their team and scale out internationally.

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Following its initial seed round last Fall, Loopd has raised a total of $2.6 million from key East Coast, West Coast and international angel and seed fund investors. Leading the current round are Salesforce CEO and founder Marc Benioff; venture capitalist Tim Draper; and Taiwan-based Mesh Ventures.

With its new round of investment, Loopd plans to focus on building a more cost-effective, feature-rich relational analytics system; growing a world-class, high-velocity sales initiative; enhancing its operational capabilities; and exploring new market opportunities.

During the next year, the Loopd team plans to power 20 Fortune 2000 corporate conferences with its wearables-based connected hardware solution and 40 high-quality events with its app-based software solution.

At events, corporate marketers can generate real-time physical (also known as "off-line") analytics from an active network of smart badges and apps. By employing its patent-pending bi-directional hardware and software solutions, Loopd enables attendees to exchange contact information on a face-to-face basis, collect marketing materials instantaneously, and check-in to speaker sessions passively. By tracking this information, corporate marketers can create actionable analytics to drive product development, partnerships, and customer acquisition strategies.

In the future, Loopd's technology could become the leading "off-line" analytics provider beyond events in operationally oriented industries, including health, manufacturing, supply chain and retail. It also could play a central role in humanitarian relief operations in the developing world and in the deployment of military ground troops.

"Loopd bridges the gap between physical and virtual connections, melting the distinctions between 'wearable technology', real-world connections and social networks," said Brian Friedman, CEO and co-founder. "The possible use cases for Loopd are boundless, from helping healthcare workers glean details about patients instantly, to facilitating military ground troop communication, to turning handshakes into information swaps."

Loopd launched at the major interactive tradeshow South by Southwest 2015 by partnering with 13 exhibitors to power the official SXSW scavenger hunt. This demonstrated how to share content, and analyze Loopd's overall event value. More recently Loopd provided analytics, smart badges, and mobile event apps for BoxDev 2015, the annual developer conference for content collaboration, in San Francisco and for Xerocon 2015, a conference for leaders in cloud accounting, in Denver in June.

During the past 12 months, Loopd has built the world's first analytics platform for the real world; complimentary iOS and Android apps; and a smart badge leveraging its proprietary bi-directional beacon protocols. At a series of global startup competitions, Loopd won the 2015 Wearable Tech Product of the Year (Wearable Tech World), was selected as a top 8 finalist for "smart data and enterprise" at SXSW Accelerator, and was selected as a top 4 finalist for "Internet of Things data analytics" at CeBit CODE_N awards.

[Tweet "Emerging leader @loopd bridges the gap between physical and virtual connections at corporate events closed a $1.5 million bridge round."]

About Loopd Inc.

Founded at the Silcon Valley's entrepreneurship academy Draper University of Heroes in September 2013, Loopd Inc. provides physical intelligence to corporate events. We help corporate marketers learn how people interact with each other, with the company, and with the company's products. The Loopd relational analytics solution is the industry's only bi-directional solution that enables the exchange of content and contact information automatically. It also gathers rich analytics data so that marketers have a more sophisticated understanding of their most valuable business relationships. Loopd is headquartered in San Francisco. To learn more, visit www.loopd.com.

To view the original version on PR Newswire, visit: Copyright (C) 2015 PR Newswire. All rights reserved.

From Chandigarh to Silicon Valley: DU Welcomes Co-Founder of FuturEd to the Summer 2015 Class

May 27, 2015 -- The Times of India featured a profile on Sahil Dewan this week, an entrepreneur who will join the Draper University Summer 2015 class.  Sahil works in edu-tech. He co-founded FuturEd in 2012, a  comprehensive service to establish alumni networks for Indian learning institutions. FuturEd offers training, consulting, and network management for schools where a strong alumni community is not yet in place. Sahil strives to fill a gap he identifies in the Indian education system, where many institutions struggle to sustain interaction with alumni once they've graduated. He sees untapped fundraising opportunities for these institutions, and hopes that by facilitating stronger alumni networks he can facilitate stronger schools overall. Already, FuturEd works with a number of institutions, including the University Institute of Engineering and Technology, Panjab University, and the Indian School of Business.

Sahil seeks entrepreneurship know-how and potentially funding from his time at DU. He hopes to bring the spirit of Silicon Valley back to his home of Chandigarh, telling the Times, "If programs like Draper University can be conceptualized and launched in India, the startup ecosystem will start developing at the grassroots level and will not just be limited to the top startups working in the hot spaces in metro cities... We need experienced entrepreneurs and investors to bridge this climate for aspiring and young students, who are starting to get excited with the idea of entrepreneurship."

We're happy to welcome Sahil to our intensive program. Without a doubt, he'll return to Chandigarh with the resources and the acumen to create long-term value in the education sector. Read the Times article on FuturEd here.

 

DU Alum Plans to Shake Up the NYC Housing Market with HomeSwipe

May 26, 2015 -- Michael Lisovetsky, member of our 2014 summer class, was featured in Business Insider and ED News Daily this week for a startup idea that's set to rock the NYC housing market. Michael is co-founder of the app, HomeSwipe, dubbed "Tinder for apartment hunting." The app uses the swipe interface popularized by Tinder to connect house-hunters with realtors. Users can swipe through New York apartment listings based on their preferences and chat directly with realtors if they're interested in a property. Michael, 22, attended Draper University while studying business at NYU. At DU, Michael was introduced to a flurry of "Tinder for X" ideas, but he wasn't fully sold on the utility of the swipe platform. He asked friend-turned-business partner, Dean Soukeras, what the swipe model could facilitate besides dating. Soukeras, a seasoned NYC entrepreneur, promptly suggested "real-estate," and HomeSwipe was born.

Michael and Soukeras sought a tech whiz to build the app and sent out a blast on Facebook. They struck gold with a response from Jason Marmon, a talented teen coder who would eventually drop out of high school to focus on HomeSwipe full time. Once the partnership was formed, they needed seed financing. Naturally, Michael reached out to Tim Draper, who was so impressed with the HomeSwipe prototype he agreed to invest.

Michael (left) and Jason (right)

Tim urged Michael and his co-founders to raise their seed round to $500,000. They started strong, but plateaued at $400,000. The HomeSwipe team returned to Tim, who set them up with an introduction to Marc Benioff. This was the final push they needed. Benioff's interest was piqued, and he agreed to bump up their funding to the requisite amount.

Soukeras worked with New York City realtors to build a customer base for the app. In effect, it will charge realtors a small transaction fee to chat with interested parties. The app will begin exclusively in New York, but the team has plans to expand to Chicago. With the apartment hunting process in Manhattan and the surrounding boroughs notoriously difficult, there is already a huge demand for the app. Since it's gone live, HomeSwipe represents 85% of available NYC real estate, boasts 47,000 downloads, and is supported by 2,200 real estate agents.

Michael credits his success to DU. Not only was he granted the networking opportunities that got HomeSwipe off the ground, but also the team building skills that come with experiential learning. He told ED News Daily, "The $150k+ price tag on my education could’ve been funneled a lot more effectively towards practical learning, and Draper U is an excellent example of that. I learned more about myself and the world in the seven weeks at Draper U than the four years of university I drudged through.”

Michael is a great example of a student who took full advantage of DU's resources to launch a meaningful venture. The HomeSwipe team will hit Sand Hill Road this week to secure more investors, and with all the app's promise, success seems inevitable. Read more on these accomplished young founders, and the full story of HomeSwipe's evolution at  Business Insider.

DU Alum Co-Authors the World Economic Forum Report on Emerging Technologies

May 18, 2015 — The 2015 World Economic Forum Report on Emerging Technologies, released in March of this year, is the most read World Economic Forum report to date. The report introduces ten rising technologies -- including next-generation robotics and digital genomes -- and gives an overview of their applications. Apurv Mishra at Draper University

The report counts Draper University alum, Apurv Mishra, as co-author; along with Bernard Meyerson, Chief Innovation Officer at IBM; and Mariette DiChristina, Editor-in-Chief of the Scientific American.

Apurv was a member of our Fall 2013 class and also completed the Boost VC Program. He is the Founder of Glavio Wearable Computing. Read the full report on today's top ten emerging technologies here.

How Unconventional, Experiential Learning is Reshaping Higher Education

May 18, 2015 — Draper University was featured in Forbes to demonstrate the shift from an academic business education model towards an increasingly experiential one. Author Jason Ma cites a growing demand for practical education with real world application for entrepreneurs. He argues that today, success after college is actually determined by experiential factors (like internships) rather than rigorous coursework. Experiential learning programs offer networking and team building opportunities not incorporated into conventional schooling. Employers want to know that your knowledge can be readily applied to their company needs, and theoretical education won't always equip candidates with the requisite skill set. More and more, experiential learning programs like DU are attracting entrepreneurs who hope to simulate on-the-job experiences and develop a practical business acumen. Ma spoke with Tim Draper and DU alums to determine what makes DU a singular educational experience.  Factors include the challenge to think big and work through failure, along with exposure to an array of business leaders in Silicon Valley.

Ma writes, "I believe that innovative, experiential learning, both off-campus and on-campus, will increasingly make marks worldwide. Many employers are not looking for those who simply 'follow orders.' They need those who can think and act out of the box, those who bring a broad range of experiences and skills to the table... [U]nconventional avenues of know-how and alternative, hands-on paths to learning are adding value to higher education, especially in the field of entrepreneurship."

Read the full profile on DU and nine other experiential learning programs at Forbes.

Draper University Alum and Ex-Skyper Launches Virtual Whiteboard Tool Deekit

May 12, 2015 — Kaili Kleemeier, member of the Draper University Fall 2014 online class, just launched Deekit: a virtual whiteboard to aid remote teams with research and development. Kaili is a former operations manager at Skype, and she drew from her experience there to design Deekit. Kaili recalls the struggle to collaborate with coworkers in different offices. After the unsuccessful search for a virtual tool that would allow them a visual brainstorm session, Kaili and her cofounders created exactly that product.

Deekit is a virtual whiteboard with screen sharing capabilities where users can sketch, chat, and build models together all in real time. Deekit comes with sophisticated templates for projects like blueprints or flowcharts, and boards can be shared or saved for future reference. Kaili claims that the standout element of Deekit is its simplicity. Deekit is formulated for ease of use with intuitive features and straightforward tools.

The Deekit team hopes to revolutionize online education with the platform. With extensive interactive capabilities, Deekit allows students to participate in lectures rather than simply listen to them, and already they've had success using the tool to teach 7-10 year olds programming. Deekit has been in private beta for over a year, and launched publicly on the 7th of May. With over 350 users in 21 countries, they are sure to see rapid growth in a market where global collaboration is increasingly commonplace.

Read the TechCrunch profile on Deekit here, and an interview with the team on Wired UK, where Deekit was featured as startup of the week!

 

DU Alum's Rideshare Service "Scooterino" Takes off in Rome

May 11, 2015 — Draper University alum, Oliver Page, has created a unique ride-sharing service in Rome with mounting success. In a city where scooters are one of the most popular forms of transportation, Scooterino allows you to hop on the back of someone's scooter who is traveling in the same direction. Oliver's idea was to adapt American ride-sharing services (like Uber) to Italian culture. Romans rely heavily on Vespas to zip through the congested metropolis, and Scooterino allows users to locate travelers on a similar route and catch a ride for just a few Euros. The service is meant to be efficient and cost effective, and Oliver will eventually take a small cut from each transaction. So far, Oliver has about 2,000 users and $50,000 in seed capital. He will test the Roman market for viability, but the service has already sparked interest in other scooter-happy cities across Europe. Read FastCompany's profile on Scooterino here.

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Draper University & Ugly Brother Studios now casting for TV Show - Apply Now!

Draper University is proud to announce we are now casting for our upcoming TV show. We've partnered with Ugly Brother Studios for a TV show that will follow selected students as they build and launch their startup in Silicon Valley. Together, we are seeking young entrepreneurs with brilliant business ideas who would like to enter the Spring Residential Program and be featured on the series! Selected students will be followed as they enter the hands-on curriculum of the Draper University program and apply their new knowledge, network and skills to their startup businesses.

Hear what Tim Draper, Founder of Draper University has to say about the show:

Draper University alumni have started more than 60 companies, raising over $7.4 million in capital. Some left to join other start-ups or large companies including Tesla and Google.

To be considered, please send the following information to: casting@draperuniversity.com Name: Age: Contact Information: Brief Bio: Tell us why you would be a great candidate & Please attach a current photo of yourself

Draper University's Entrepreneurship Program Now Open to Cal Poly Students - For Credit!

Draper UniversityOctober 29, 2014 – Draper University and California Polytechnic State University (Cal Poly) are forming a partnership to offer aspiring entrepreneurs at Cal Poly the opportunity to attend Draper University's innovative Silicon Valley entrepreneurship program for credit. Up to 24 Cal Poly students will be part of the Winter 2015 Class at Draper University to enhance their 'Learn by Doing' experience. Cal PolyThe course is part of a new university-wide program at Cal Poly called "Silicon Valley Entrepreneurs: A Study Away Entrepreneurship Immersion Program." It is an interdisciplinary effort to allow students in business, engineering, liberal arts, and any other field, to spend a quarter involved in entrepreneurial activities in Silicon Valley while maintaining progress toward a degree.

What Cal Poly has to say

“This is a unique opportunity for Cal Poly students from all disciplines throughout the university,” said Jeffrey D. Armstrong, Cal Poly president. “The Draper University program, like Cal Poly’s 'Learn by Doing' approach, fosters creative thinking and teaches students the value of jumping in, doing the work and learning from failure on the way to success.”

What Draper University has to say

“We know our hand-on training and access to Silicon Valley innovators provides an experience that can’t be replicated in a university setting,” said Tim Draper, founder of Draper University. “We are honored to work with all these potential technology innovators of the future from Cal Poly.”

Why This is Important

At a time when increasing numbers of students are taking alternative educational and career paths in startup bootcamps and business accelerator/incubator programs, traditional universities are finding innovative ways to keep up with their students. As this infographic shows, universities across the US are becoming more and more entrepreneur-focused with the establishment of entrepreneurship clubs, groups, and classes.

The exciting partnership features a curriculum focused on experiential education. The goal is to teach entrepreneurship to people who are relentless in their desire to change the world and make things happen in a traditional and nontraditional learning environment.

Draper University is still taking applications for its Winter 2015 Class, which runs from January 25 to March 13, 2015. Apply online by 11/18 at http://www.localhost/sites/html

Draper University Alumni Launch "Loopd"

San Mateo, CA – October 16, 2014 – Draper University, the innovative and disruptive school for entrepreneurs, announced that four alumni have launched Loopd, a proximity marketing solutions tool for marketing executives. Loopd closed $1 million in angel funding from Draper Associates and Draper University founder Tim Draper, Salesforce.com CEO Marc Benioff, and Vuclip Co-Founder Xinhui Nui. Alumni Startup Loopd“At Draper University we teach our students to think differently and provide all the necessary tools to start a business. We are thrilled to see four of our Draper University heroes going out into the world and disrupting the traditional way of marketing at conferences and events,” said Draper.

With Loopd, marketers are able to prove event ROI, deliver higher quality leads, gather accurate attendee profiles, optimize event marketing strategies, and enhance attendee engagement. Unlike stand-alone event apps, beacon systems, or traditional lead retrieval systems, Loopd combines the three essential components for an event marketer: a mobile app, event hardware including bi-directional beacons, and rich analytics.

The team of seven is based in San Francisco, CA and Taipei, Taiwan. The chips cost less than $5 dollars to manufacture and can last up to two weeks. The chip also allows users to take notes and export the information received from the app to the user’s sales software, thus making it easier for conference attendees to create contacts rather than solely relying on business cards.

“Draper University changed my life; this is almost an understatement. During my session, I met my two amazing cofounders, came up with our idea for Loopd, and decided to move to Silicon Valley to start my company,” said Brian Friedman, CEO at Loopd. “I would recommend the program with flying colors to anyone and everyone that wants to learn more entrepreneurship.”

Former Draper University alumni are out changing the world – former students have started over 60 companies, raised over $7.4 million in capital, are working at large companies including Tesla and Google, as well as at startups, and attending business school at Harvard and Stanford. Draper University is now accepting applications for its Winter 2015 programs. Application deadlines are at http://www.localhost/sites/html/apply.


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Draper University Launches Free Online Bitcoin Course

Bitcoin Course San Mateo, CA – October 6, 2014 - Draper University, the innovative and disruptive school for entrepreneurs in Silicon Valley, has teamed up with ZapChain, a growing network for Bitcoin professionals, to build a free online course on Bitcoin. The course is designed for individuals who are new to the Bitcoin space or do not have a technical understanding of the digital currency. While there are resources available for those with a technical background to learn more about Bitcoin, this course will make the subject accessible to everyone regardless of their prior knowledge.

This new exciting online course brings together a host of entrepreneurs, venture capitalists and engineers from Silicon Valley all operating in the Bitcoin space. With such a wide range of participants, students will be exposed to a plethora of ideas regarding the Bitcoin protocol, its current and potential uses, and its ability to change the world as we know it.

"When I found out that Draper University was making a Bitcoin course, I knew ZapChain needed to get involved. Bitcoin is an amazing technology that can enable innovation in so many areas of the world and I'm very proud of what we have created. I can't wait to see the new products created by people who take the Bitcoin Course," Matt Schlicht, Co-Founder of ZapChain.

Draper University was the first educational institution to accept bitcoin as a form of tuition payment and wanted to create this course as they felt there was a void in educational material making Bitcoin more approachable. The course will help the Bitcoin ecosystem as a whole from the increased exposure and degree of understanding students will receive. The goal of producing this course is to provide a holistic overview of Bitcoin from a predominantly non-technical perspective, and to illustrate its potential to transform the way we interact as a global community in the financial marketplace.

The course launches on October 22, 2014. Interested participants can sign up here to receive more information and get access to exclusive interviews prior to the course launching.


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What Are Draper University Alumni Up To? Sept 2014 Update

San Mateo, CA – Sept 3, 2014 – Draper University entrepreneurship program graduates are making waves in startup communities across the globe. Launched in 2012 in Silicon Valley by successful venture capitalist Tim Draper, Draper University runs startup training programs for entrepreneurs from all over the world. Students learn to think differently and are encouraged to start businesses that will change the world. Tech DriveRecent graduates from the entrepreneurial program include female racecar driver Collete Davis, who graduated from the Spring 2013 cohort. Collete, a Formula 1 racecar driver and STEM education ambassador recently co-founded TechDrive online magazine with Bravo! TV Silicon Valley cast member Hermione Way and was recently featured on the cover of FSHN magazine.

Bistro Cat FeederOther Draper University alumni include Mu-Chi Sing and Colin Heilbut, both from the Winter 2014 cohort, who successfully crowdfunded over $200,000.00 for Bistro, the smart feeder that recognizes your cat’s face. Bistro is the world’s smartest feeder that can track appetite and weight change using an innovative cat facial recognition technology.

Q BraceletMore innovative graduates, all from the Summer 2013 cohort, include the founders of two wearable technology startups. James Kernan founded the startup Q Designs and launched the Q Bracelet, an innovative stylish bracelet that charges your smartphone. Brian Friedman and Allen Houng founded the startup Loopd, a platform that streamlines interaction between business professionals.

Peanuts4PeanutsIn the social entrepreneurship sector, alumnae Lizzie Faust and Kendra Wilkins are supporting malnourished children in Haiti with sales of their all-natural peanut butter through their startup Peanuts4Peanuts.

Blast BuzzInnovative marketer Kerstin Karu of the spring 2013 cohort launched Blast Buzz to help brands connect with people to co-create and amplify word-of-mouth buzz across social media. Kerstin was recently featured on VentureBeat speaking on the future of marketing.

Other notable alums include Apurv Mishra, a developer and engineer who is launching TAP, an app that will be the fastest, simplest messaging application. Users simply “tap” their smartphone to send a notification. In the gamification sector, alum Alex Chen is changing the landscape by creating TestLegends, a tool for educators to make test preparation more fun and engaging. Disrupting the moving sector in India is Mithun Srivasta, who launched Blowhorn, the Uber of home delivery, in order to bring easy delivery into homes across India.

Draper University is now taking applications for its Winter 2015 cohort, which runs from January 25 to March 13, 2015. Apply online at http://www.localhost/sites/html


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Online Entrepreneurship Program Offers Special Completion Challenge

San Francisco, CA – August 07, 2014 – Draper University is proud to announce the Draper University Online (DUO) Completion Challenge. Fall 2014 and Winter 2015 students will get 50% of the $850 tuition back if they complete the core curriculum. Draper University Entrepreneurship ProgramThe goal of the DUO Completion Challenge is two-fold. First, Draper University intends to make the online entrepreneurship program more affordable to those who have real commitment to learning about building startups. Secondly, the school hopes to attract more applicants and collect user behavior data to create state-of-the-art online learning experiences for entrepreneurs.

A recent Draper University study has shown interesting findings pertaining to the learning behaviors of online entrepreneurship students at Draper University. Surprisingly, among all three delivery formats, interactive assignments, video lectures and reading, online students are most actively engaged with interactive assignments even though completing an interactive assignment requires much more work than clicking through a video lecture or a reading assignment.

The study is based on user data of the Winter 2014 cohort. On average, the Winter 2014 cohort achieved an average engagement rate of 75%, already well above the industry average engagement rate for online courses. This indicates that on average, a student engaged with 75% of all course content in the core curriculum. Interestingly, the average engagement rate of interactive assignments is 83%, substantially higher than the 74% average engagement rate for reading introductions and the 69% average engagement rate for video lectures.

Similar to other MOOC programs, Draper University Online’s core curriculum exhibits a downward trending engagement rate over the 7-week program. The first module, Vision, has an average engagement rate of 85% and the last module, Brilliance, has an average engagement rate of 68%.

By comparison, the interactive assignments were an exception. The average engagement rate of assignments started with an average engagement rate of 87% in the first module and only decreased slightly to 83% in the last module. Moreover, the interactive assignments consistently outperformed the other two delivery formats in engagement rate in all 7 modules.

Acknowledging the relatively small sample size in the study, the high engagement rate of interactive assignment likely resulted from both Draper University's innovative assignment design and the hands-on nature of its target student group, entrepreneurs, and aspiring entrepreneurs. The program requires students to complete a series of fun but challenging assignments, which instill the most essential skills of entrepreneurship to its online entrepreneurship program students.

Alumni of the online entrepreneurship program appreciate the unique learning experiences. Tony Capasso of Summer 2014 Class donated one full scholarship for a 1st or 2nd generation American to attend the program.


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Draper University Announces Downtown Project Entrepreneurial Prize for Top Graduates

San Mateo, CA – August 7, 2014 – Draper University is proud to announce the Downtown Project Entrepreneurial Prize for the top two graduates of the Draper University’s Fall entrepreneurial program. Tony Hsieh has generously donated an all expense paid trip for two Draper University students to fly to Las Vegas on a premier JetSuite aircraft to experience the Downtown Project. Tony Hsieh Downtown Project“We're excited to partner with Draper University for the first Downtown Project Entrepreneurial Prize and to welcome their graduates to a whole new side of Downtown Las Vegas!” – Tony Hsieh, CEO of Zappos.com and Founder of Las Vegas Downtown Project.

Students will stay in the one of the fully furnished apartments hosted by the Downtown Project and will spend their time immersed in the entrepreneurial spirit of the Downtown Project. They will also be able to tour Zappos and other local companies as well as check out the downtown Vegas scene and meet other startup founders in the community.

“We are thrilled to participate in such an exciting award for an inspiring program!” – Alex Wilcox, JetSuite Founder and CEO.

As a top startup program teaching entrepreneurship in Silicon Valley, Draper University seeks to give unique opportunities to Draper University graduates in order to meet other like minded individuals who are trying to launch a business and learn from successful startup founders like Tony Hsieh.

About Downtown Project: The goal and purpose of Downtown Project is to help make Downtown Las Vegas a place of inspiration, entrepreneurial energy, creativity, innovation, upward mobility, and discovery, through the three Cs of collisions, co-learning, and connectedness. We are doing this by investing in tech startups, small business, real estate and development, arts, culture, and education.

About JetSuite: JetSuite’s vision to provide the freedom and exhilaration of private air travel to more people than ever is realized through efficient operations, acute attention to detail, acclaimed customer service, and industry-leading safety practices. And JetSuite continues to be the only jet charter company to guarantee its instant, online quotes for its fleet of WiFi-equipped JetSuite Edition CJ3 and Phenom 100 aircraft. Refreshingly transparent!


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Silicon Valley Entrepreneurial Summer Program Kicks Off

San Mateo, CA – July 2, 2014 – Draper University, a top entrepreneurship program, is proud to announce that for 6 weeks this summer, 39 young entrepreneurs from 17 different countries will converge on the Draper University campus in the heart of Silicon Valley for an intensive, experiential program focused on entrepreneurship, building real-world skills, and “learning by doing.” The highly selective school, currently running its sixth cohort, continues to refresh its curriculum to include cutting edge speakers and unconventional learning methods. Draper University“We prepare people for an interesting and purposeful life. We look for those 18-28 year olds who have a passion to change the world for the better. Students who enter the program will build a lifelong network of friends from around the world, will be exposed to the full Silicon Valley experience, will move their vision forward, and will never be the same,” said Tim Draper, founder of Draper University and co-founder of Draper Fisher Jurvetson Venture Fund.

The students will be immersed in an unparalleled environment focused on creating a new kind of game-changing, young entrepreneur. They will learn from Silicon Valley all-stars like Bill Draper, Heidi Roizen, Reid Dennis, Naveen Jain, Josh Buckley, and Dave McClure, and will build a lifelong network of peers, advisors, and mentors. At the end of the immersive startup bootcamp, Draper University students will participate in a business plan competition where students have the opportunity to pitch to a panel of investors and obtain funding for their business.

Residential ProgramThe accomplished summer cohort, of which 36% are female and 60% are international, includes someone who founded a company that uses kinect touchless technology to help surgeons during complex operations, someone who speaks five languages, a Miss World Malaysia pageant participant, a designer of components for SpaceX’s Falcon Heavy rocket, the founder of the Stanford Quidditch team, and several published authors.

Former Draper University students are out changing the world – they have started over 60 companies, raised over $6.4 million in capital, are working at large companies including Tesla and Google, as well as at startups, and attending business school at Harvard and Stanford.

Draper University is now accepting applications for its Fall 2014 Residential and Online programs. Application deadlines are at http://www.localhost/sites/html/apply. Draper University is offering over $35k in scholarships for its Residential Program in entrepreneurship, and is the first school to accept Bitcoin for tuition payment. For the first time, Draper University Online, an innovative online entrepreneurship program where students learn all the skills they need to be an entrepreneur and get to pitch their business idea for the chance to win up to a $5k investment, is offering to refund half of the tuition back to students who complete all of the coursework.


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