Last weekend 30 passionate university students got together for the official Melbourne Startup Camp 2010.
The event was organised by Student Entrepreneurs | Agents of Change, a student club based out of the University of Melbourne. Their goal is to foster the “powerful and ever-growing bug of entrepreneurship sweeping a new generation of students.”
“The most awesome stage”
Last year, Facebook's VP of Design thought the TNW Conference main stage was the best she'd ever been on.
While the participants were new, the tricks were old.
Locked-down over 24 hours in a race against the clock, students had to come up with 6 web-based businesses from concept all the way through to public launch.
Mike Reid from Agents of Change explained why he thinks the Startup Camp model is so useful:
“Students had to strip down everything they had ever learnt to its core, then prioritise and apply their toolkit to a problem they faced and a solution they could build. Throw in an increasingly demanding time constraint into the mix and you have the perfect ingredients for success.”
Phillip Kingston, Founder of Kingston Design and one of the judging panelists agreed:
“Startup Camp is one of the best experiences a student entrepreneur could go through. It gives them first-hand insight into the grit, sweat and work ethic that is required to get a startup off the ground”.
Another panelist, Andrew Gerrand, Developer Relations officer at Google, was impressed by the students’ work:
“The quality of what these students produced was on par with that of the Startup Camp run for professional entrepreneurs in Sydney”.
I’m not too sure who the professional entrepreneurs he was speaking about in Sydney were, but I’m certain that the students would be more than capable of holding their own if the two groups happened to meet.
And the results?
An interesting bunch of startups – some fun, some a bit rough around the edges and a few with real potential:
Ansr.it – Daily questions. Crazy answers. ansr.it!
Blood Thank – Connecting generosity with gratitude, for blood donors and receivers
Dream, Share, Discover – Share your dreams and aspiration
Class Notes – The class notes marketplace for uni students
Night Mapr – Find a night event near you
Gwisher – Help hapless guys to find perfect gifts for their girlfriends
Here are my personal favourites (and reasons why) but congrats to all the participants for making it through the weekend:
Ansr.it – I’m very much into the idea of variations on the traditional Q&A site, even when fun/entertaining/crazy like Ansr.it is, as a way of moving information from people’s heads onto the Internet
Blood Thank – After visiting the Australian Social Innovation Camp I’m getting more and more into social innovation and the way that technology can bring people together to make positive changes in society
Gwisher – An interesting application of a decision engine that I think has real potential if they keep working on it