We recently concluded the Spring Vol Court series, and we are pleased to report that his program continues to grow, provide value, cross all of the Knoxville campuses, and reach out to the public.
In the fall, we revamped the program to reflect the concepts emerging from Silicon Valley, specifically the customer discovery and validation model implemented in the Lean LaunchPad program at Stanford. When we did that, our fall series grew in size. This semester, we retained more participants over time and imiproved the quality of the output. Additionally, we had a record number of competitors — for the first time ever, we had to narrow the field to make the competition manageable for judging.
This spring, 77 people participated, and here is the breakout:
- 62% were students
- 21% from the general public
- 12% did not identify themselves
- 9% were faculty/staff
When we started the program in the fall of 2010, the vast majority were from the College of Business, so outreach across campuses is succeeding! Of the students:
- 48% were business students
- 29% were science/technology students
- 22% were from other disciplines (law, arts, etc.)
Even better, one of our repeat judges told us it was clear to him that the quality and polish of the presentations were the best that he has seen so far – he believed that the students are much better prepared for starting their businesses.
Vol Court is open to anyone, inside or outside of UT, who wants to learn the fundamentals for starting a business. Join us again in the fall!