Innovative 3 Day Startup Program Comes to UNA Campus

UNA College of Business hosting 3 Day StartupThe 3 Day Startup program originated at the University of Texas - Austin in 2008. What began with a group of cross-disciplinary students frustrated with the unexpressed potential for startups in the university environment, has grown into a global program administered on 60 campuses in 18 countries across five continents  to over 6,000 students to date. The UNA College of Business has long been aware of the increasing interest in entrepreneurial endeavors among our students and the surrounding area. “We want to bring entrepreneurship and startup skills to our students in an interactive way,” UNA COB’s Executive-in-Residence Janyce Fadden said, “We’ve been impressed with the results the 3 Day Startup program has produced.”

The inaugural program at UNA will be held February 27 through March 1, 2015.  Program leader Dr. Paulette Alexander said, “There is a great deal of interest in the student community to own their own businesses. This is a great opportunity to help students gain a better understanding of what that means.”

The program will accept 40 students and every student must apply to attend the weekend. “It’s open to any student who has an idea for a business or would like to learn how to start a business with someone else,” Dr. Alexander said. “All majors from all disciplines and classifications, from freshman to graduate student,  are welcome to attend.” 

The weekend involves a dedicated brainstorming session followed by preliminary idea pitches and feedback and, on day two, customer discovery, which requires teams to reach out to potential customers for public feedback on their business concept. The program places heavy emphasis on business model generation with leadership and critical response from mentors and investors.

Mentors from the Shoals business community will assist in a number of ways over the weekend, from initial brainstorming sessions to developing ideas into tangible concepts ready for customer interaction. A panel of area business leaders will offer key direction on pitches, idea execution and demonstrations.

By the end of the weekend, student teams can expect to have kickstarted a viable business concept. 

Application deadline is February 6, 2015. Interested students can apply through the UNA 3 Day Startup website

The 3 Day Startup program is a collaborative effort between the COB and area supporters. If you would like to participate as a mentor, facilitator or sponsor, please contact Dr. Paulette Alexander at 256-765-4409, or

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