Hero Week #2: Prototyping, TEDx and Programming

 

ASU Faculty Dan Mazzolla teaching web and mobile programming.

ASU Faculty Dan Mazzolla teaching web and mobile programming.

Condom selling, growth hacking, pretotyping and attending a TedX event were just the tip of the iceberg this week at Draper University. Students have been undergoing a rapid transformation in their business personalities and below you’ll find some of the experiences that have facilitated this development!

Overcoming a fifteen country wide language barrier is no easy task, but Rahman Jamaal, Silicon Valley musician and entrepreneur made the seemingly impossible, possible, through the power of music. His freestyle rap class began with a simple lesson in rhythmic music theory and evolved into students writing their own raps. Eventually they were put on the spot in front of each other and made to freestyle. The embarrassment was in no short supply, but ultimately the lesson in being comfortable around your teammates was realized and the flows started to emerge.

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Paulo Guimarães is creating a startup to help musicians and bands market themselves better.

Other classes peppered the week including a four hour pretotyping class with a ground floor Google hire, and now world shaping entrepreneur, Alberto Savola. Savola worked the class through the steps needed in designing a business and eventually bringing a prototype to fruition. Jack Saba led an excellent class on the development of Bitcoin, blockchain and its role in emerging economies, while Justin Wu offered a phenomenal growth hacking workshop in which he educated students about how to build a 100,000+ following on social media for businesses and personal endeavors alike. Notable speakers also include Jeff Cabili, Stanford Graduate program instructor on non-verbal communication and Paul Nowak, speed reading extraordinaire who instructed students on how to finish 300+ page books in less than a day.

Luke Naji working with his team on creative sales strategies.

Luke Naji working with his team on creative sales strategies.

When students weren’t being entertained by the best speakers in the land, they engaged in more boundary pushing activities. The first of which was a debate in which all students were forced to argue against or for something they were passionate about… for the other side. This was an attempt to have students analyze their communication and hone their convincing skills for their sales. After that, students were then broken into teams and given 100 condoms to sell to support themselves for survival week (oh how we can’t wait to write the survival week blog). Keep in mind that some of the students are uncomfortable with being in a foreign country, let alone selling, let alone selling sexual items to foreigners. This was a true test of business prowess as some groups opted to go onto the streets and sell to passersby, while others created online shops and crowdfunding campaigns. Students had to think outside of the box and create experiences to sell products to new customers.

Ion Dronic, Preethi Rao, Swathepriya Chirlamcherla attending TEDx San Francisco

Ion Dronic, Preethi Rao, Swathepriya Chirlamcherla attending TEDx San Francisco

On Firday a TedX San Francisco conference was on the agenda where students sat in front of speakers from Twitter to FBI Crypto-currency analyzers. For many, TedX has been a beacon of entrepreneurship and critical thinking, but unfortunately the majority of the students have only been able to watch videos of the talks in their countries. To be able to experience it in person was a dream come true for many of the students.

The energy and excitement is never ending!

The energy and excitement is never ending!

The week concluded with two intensive Web and Mobile programming classes taught by ASU clinical faculty Dan Mazzolla. Students had an introduction to event based programming, networks and files directory. These classes are the first step in a series of programming sessions available to the students to advance their technical skills and help them develop the great apps and websites they imagine.

Superheros in action

Superheros in action

All in all the ASU Draper Incubator continues to push the students daily with advanced educational topics, amazing interactions with world renowned guests speakers and one-on-one mentorship for their business. Do you want to join this amazing adventure, apply here for the next session and come have the time of your life right startup land.

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