UT Austin’s premier entrepreneurship-fostering hub that provides a wealth of inspiration, resources, and opportunities for aspiring and established founders alike. The Herb Kelleher Center offers several resources and programs for students.
Pre-accelerator program that offers undergraduate student founders the opportunity to study potential customers, improve their product, and position themselves for success within the marketplace. The program cycle is outlined below:
Identify a problem worth solving.
Define the target customer and develop a discovery strategy.
Annual pitch competition for undergraduate students across Texas.
The mission is to create a legacy of successful student entrepreneurs by allowing them the opportunity to hone business strategy, get professional feedback, and form lasting relationships with mentors in the Texas entrepreneurial ecosystem.
Applications for this competition are open to all students at UT Austin, and founders across all industries are encouraged to apply.
Prizes are mainly cash-based, with first place taking $8,000 second taking $4,000, third taking $2,000, and fourth taking $1,000.
A deep technology incubator that serves student and faculty entrepreneurs to explore deep technology solutions that address the world’s challenges. ATI offers a multitude of programs for students at UT Austin.
UT Austin’s selective summer accelerator that picks the most promising startups and helps them through their next market-driven milestone. To date, SEAL companies have raised $100M and generated over $400M in valuation. This is a 9-week program that includes:
Mentorship: participants learn from field experts, who offer their experience and insight.
Lunch and Learns: Tutorial lunch get-togethers that focus on the basics of building a scalable company.
Fundraising Pitch development: Teams pitch their products on the first day and continue improving on them throughout the program.
D-Day: The hallmark decision day, where a board of judges decides whether or not the project can survive in the real world based on research and advice.
Relationships: A lasting network with entrepreneurs and mentors in the Austin ecosystem.
72-hour learning-by-doing workshop that teaches entrepreneurial skills in a hands-on environment.
Orientation: Participants meet and learn how to get the most value out of the 3-day experience.
Day 1: Facilitators help lead students through brainstorming, pitches, and team selection.
Day 2: A heavy emphasis is made on generating business models, and activities from day 1 are continued and improved on.
Day 3: Wrapping up experiences from the past 2 days and leading into the final pitches and demos to an esteemed panel of mentors and investors.
Courses offered by UT Austin:
MIS304: Programming and Problem Solving
ES 177: Longhorn Startup Seminar
OM337: Product Development
MAN336P: Social Entrepreneurship 1
ME266K: Mechanical Engineering Design Project
CHE 379: Entrepreneurship
CHE 380: Entrepreneurship
EE364E: Interdisciplinary Entrepreneurship
ITD350: Women in Entrepreneurship
UGS303: Entrepreneurship UGS
DES 340C: Identity Systems
ADV 332: New Media Entrepreneurialism
Bridging Disciplines Programs (BDP):
These are course programs offered by the university that combine courses from several different departments to give students the entrepreneurial and creative skills to turn ideas into ventures. There are two main programs that the University offers.
BDP that brings students who are interested in the public service sector and expanding their involvement in the community together. A complete description of the coursework requirements can be found on the website linked in the program name.
A student-run, alumni-backed venture capital fund working to transform entrepreneurship at UT Austin by providing equity-free funding, mentorship, and investing experience for student-led startups.
Genesis performs on-campus deal sourcing and encourages student founders to apply for funding, helping them along each step of the way (NOTE: Any company can apply as long as at least one student on the founding team is registered at UT Austin).
After applying, students will be invited to pitch and greenlit for due diligence. Companies that make it through this stage become part of the portfolio and are offered funding and mentorship.
Genesis also hosts office hours for aspiring founders to get reliable advice on their startups and other forms of mentorship.
An interdisciplinary application-based organization that focuses on bringing together technology, business, and design to build/further entrepreneurial products and drive innovation. Convergent is split up into an incubator and build program.
Semester-long program that challenges students to bring a prototyped idea into a functional startup. Teams of roughly 8 from tech, business, and design backgrounds work to create a full stack application. Build teams are further split into Foundational and Case-based build teams.
Foundational Build Teams: A project-based program mainly geared towards newcomers wanting to learn how to code.
Case-based Build Teams: Students work on cases throughout the semester to build products from the ground up that provide a solution to their respective cases.
Semester-long program that startups apply to in order to help scale their product on both technical and business sides. Students can also apply to be the engineers and designers that help these chosen startups scale.
An arm of the Student Government that is dedicated to fostering and supporting entrepreneurship on campus by building a culture for potential founders and giving them the resources to start their companies and succeed. LEA runs several programs for aspiring entrepreneurs.
UT McCombs Venture Fellow program is a robust, year-long program for a selected group of MBA students. The fellowship consists of working with some of the best private equity and venture capital firms in the nation and engagement with a variety of experts to provide value for the community.
Fellows provide analytical and financial analysis, deal sourcing, and ops support.
Engagement in boardroom conversations with experts in VC, PE and successful entrepreneurs.
Networking opportunities traveling the country, meeting with top-tier firms.
A well-known hub of entrepreneurship that aims to connect Austin entrepreneurs with their first customers, employees, mentors, and investors. Capital Factory partners with top tech and consulting companies along with universities to provide a productive working environment for entrepreneurs and startups in their network