Webinar Recap: Ash Maurya – Intro to Running Lean

Earlier this month the Patriot Boot Camp team had the honor of welcoming Ash Maurya to our monthly webinar series.

Ash is a seasoned entrepreneur who's book Running Lean is the quintessential blueprint for turning an idea into a scalable business. During this webinar Ash provided some powerful startup insights and we also heard from Patriot Boot Camp alumni KC Chhipwadia about how he is applying the Running Lean methodology to his new company. Check it out!

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PBC - Webinar - Ash Maurya - Intro to Running Lean

Join us on Wednesday, November 4, 2015 at 11am Mountain time for an introduction to the Running Lean methodology with Ash Maurya. Learn how to systematically turn your idea into a repeatable and scalable business and hear how one PBC alumni is applying this methodology to his startup.

This live webinar is absolutely free, open to the public and will run 60 minutes in length.

PBC - Running Lean - Webinar

Click here to add this event to your Google Calendar.

Click here to join this event live on 11/4/2015 at 11am Mountain.

Event Recap: Patriot Boot Camp in Detroit, Michigan

From October 23 to October 25, 2015 we ran an excellent Patriot Boot Camp in Detroit, Michigan.

 PBC - Detroit - 2015 - Cohort

The Detroit Patriot Boot Camp yielded some impressive results, and that impact can be summed up with the following metrics:

  • 41 military Veterans/spouses participated
  • 35 unique startup companies were represented
  • 27 presenters shared their expertise
  • 44 mentors volunteered their time
  • 261 organized mentor sessions were convened
  • 6,525 minutes of professional mentoring were delivered

Patriot Boot Camp Detroit was made possible by support from these sponsors!

 PBC-Detroit-2015-Sponsors-Small

Professional photos of the Detroit event were taken by Steve King of a2imaging.com.

Below is a sampling of the awesome feedback the event received on Twitter.

Webinar Recap - John Hill of Techstars

Last week Patriot Boot Camp held it's first live educational webinar! The guest for this inaugural broadcast was John Hill the Network Catalyst for Techstars.

John has spent more than 10 years connecting people to opportunities through relational networking and he shared some amazing LinkedIn tactics and techniques during this webinar. Check it out!

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PBC Webinar - John Hill - Relational Networking and Personal Branding with LinkedIn

Join a Patriot Boot Camp webinar this Friday (October 2) at 1pm Eastern for a live presentation by John Hill on navigating and leveraging LinkedIn as a networking tool. John Hill is the Network Catalyst at Techstars and has a wealth of business experience. The format will be a 30 minute presentation followed by 15 minutes of time for questions and answers.

PBC Webinar - John Hill

Click here to add this event to your Google Calendar.

Click here to join this event live on 10/2/2015 at 1pm Eastern.

Q&A With PBC Alumni Josh Karrasch - The Gun Dude

Who you are and what you did in the military?

Who am I? What a great question! By name I am Joshua Karrasch, I am thirty-four years old, I am from Bradford, Pennsylvania and am a veteran of the US Navy where I served as a Hospital Corpsman, Petty Officer Second Class for five years.

PBC  Blog - Gun Dude

After the Navy I completed my degree at the University of California at Santa Cruz; a life changing experience to say the very least. After graduation I migrated back to the east coast in search of “the dream”. During that time I worked as a carpenter and then as a physical security specialist and counterintelligence agent at the Pentagon Force Protection Agency. As things tend to go, I became uncomfortable in my comfortable job, I became disenfranchised with the dream of a stable job, retirement, blah, blah, blah.

So I set out to find my own path! The result: The Gun Dude. For the past three years of my life and with the help of some really great people, I have plucked this loose concept from my brain and turned it into a reality. Who I am is a statement I am trying to fully answer in my own head…so let us leave it that I am “in transition” discovering new and exciting things about myself on a daily basis.

How you got interested in creating a tech company?

The Gun Dude started as an online retailer of firearms with the intent being that I could operate it from any location. I soon discovered this was not a viable model and adapted to the reality of the market. I discovered that the firearms industry, as a general rule, is technophobic, lacking in customer service, and down right intimidating for many.

PBC Blog - Gun Dude Logo

With that in mind I have set out to develop a new model for firearms retail- to become the gold standard in the industry. By implementing uncompromising customer service and leveraging technology and innovative lean business models, I am providing a community where my customers can engage firearms, an admittedly daunting topic, through digital and physical means.

All of that said, I never planned on starting a tech company or a retail business. What I have found is a nice blend of tech and local retail to create an entirely new and exciting experience. In the end it is my goal to create responsible firearms owners and decrease the occurrence of negative outcomes associated with firearms.

What led you to Patriot Boot Camp?

I have heard many times that where you end up is right where you are supposed to be. In the early stages of the start-up I experienced a great deal of isolation and loss of identity, both of which I was admittedly unprepared for. A good friend and mentor called me one day after hearing of my challenges and stated that I needed to be at the next Patriot Boot Camp. While the event was free the expenses involved in the travel were prohibitive, but we pulled it together and made it happen. And wow what an experience!

To be exposed to other veterans going through the exact same challenges that I was facing was invaluable. To hear that the feelings of isolation, the emotional roller coasters, and the loss of identity were all normal in the start-up and entrepreneurial journey gave me hope that I would make it out alive. I went from feeling like I was loosing my mind to feeling like I was part of a community again. The connections I made during Patriot Boot Camp continue to this day.

What did you gain from Patriot Boot Camp?

Without a doubt Patriot Boot Camp gave me hope; it refilled my reservoir with whatever it was that I needed to continue to preserver along the journey. I argue that resilience is the single most important trait in many instances, not least of which is being an entrepreneur. My resilience at the time I traveled to PBC had been worn down and I was in dire need of a family.

What better family than my military brethren? And in what better format than to receive mentorship and guidance from some of the most successful names in the business!

What is next on your entrepreneurial journey?

World domination….. just kidding!

It is my goal to open a Gun Dude in every major US city center over the next ten years. That is going to require solidification of my brand, creating replicable processes, and continuing to develop a digital and tech presence. I have many side projects that I am excited to begin as well!

PBC Blog - Gun Dude

The world is full of complex problems that need to be solved and I want to try my hand at a few of them. I have many role models, but one person who I admire from a business aspect is Sir Richard Branson. His willingness to tackle large problems and develop great outcomes is not only an inspiration, but a level of success I aspire to.

Guest Blog Post: Raul Moreno On His Entrepreneurial Journey

[author] [author_image timthumb='on']https://media.licdn.com/media/p/2/005/036/20e/1ed9b12.jpg[/author_image] [author_info]Raul Moreno is a father to three, husband to one.  He's also building a better future for military families. Raul attended the 2015 Patriot Boot Camp in North Carolina.[/author_info] [/author] When Sean from PBC asked me if I’d be interested in offering a guest blog to assist in their efforts I felt extremely humbled and I began thinking of what value I have to offer.

I called mi abuelita (my grandma) for advice.

She was born and raised in Mexico and had just about every advantage available to her as a Mexican.

PBC - Raul Moreno

She described her father as the most intelligent person she’s known. Her brothers: a medical doctor, the other an engineer. Her life in Mexico was full of promise and happiness.

Mi abuelito (my grandpa), a Sergeant First-Class in the US ARMY, served as disaster relief for a hurricane in Tampico- abuelita’s home.

During that time he courted, and received a father’s blessing to marry mi abuelita. She decided to leave her happy home, start a new life, in a new country.

Her story had me floating. I asked her why she made such a life-changing decision.

Her answer: she wanted to take charge of her own destiny.

She told me about the challenges she faced journeying from Mexico to the United States.

She didn’t speak English- language barrier, check.

She had no friends or meaningful relationships- culture shock, check.

She was both terrified and excited to create an awesome future- determination and vision, check.

She had a mind full of questions and few answers.

She went to work.

She watched television and analyzed the way people spoke. She learned to speak English.

She continued to put herself in social landscapes, made friends, and they turned out to be a lot like her. She describes the bunch as a Mexican beauty, a German lady and a Korean doll. Military wives.

They found comfort and refuge in each other’s company. They had their own community of trust. The value they offered one another was just what they all needed in their new lives.

By now you’re probably asking, “What the heck does this have to do with MY company?”

Well, compadres, let me tell you…

The path of the entrepreneur is not for the faint of heart.

It’s not enough to accept change. One must embrace it.

You’ll navigate uncharted landscapes and speak in foreign tongues.

You’ll be faced with waves of issues that require swift yet educated decisions.

You’ll lose your appetite and sleep. You’ll shed from your life what is not essential to the journey.

I don’t know why anyone would want to be an entrepreneur.

It’s difficult.

It’s impossible.

It’s the work of Warriors.

We are Operators of the Unknown. And when things get tough, we tighten our belt, clinch our fists and punch Impossible in the face.

Entrepreneurship is the work for us.

For those of you standing up, ready to move forward, I charge you to take the next step.

You’re equipped with a community of military veterans that has made your success their mission!

Patriot Boot Camp presented by Techstars is the authority in Veteran entrepreneurship.

Find your answers and make your ding in the world!

Apply to Patriot Boot Camp today.

~r

(Editorial credit: Douglas Gallardo Jr & Tak Lo)

Patriot Boot Camp Detroit - Media Kit

Patriot Boot Camp is headed to Detroit, Michigan from October 23 to 25, 2015! Applications are already rolling in and we are working with presenters, mentors and sponsors to make the event great. The cohort will be 50 early stage entrepreneurs (military Veterans, active duty service members and military spouses).

 

Below are a few resources you can use to promote, share and evangelize for the upcoming "Motor City" iteration of Patriot Boot Camp.

 

Information Flier/Poster/Handout

PBC - 2015 - Detroit - Info - Flier

Press Release PBC - 201 - Detroit - Press - Release

Click to Tweet

(click on any of the images below to fire off a Tweet)

PBC - 2015 - Detroit - Click To Tweet

PBC - 2015 - Detroit - Click To Tweet

PBC - 2015 - Detroit - Click To Tweet

Education At Patriot Boot Camp

Patriot Boot Camp in Detroit starts on October 23, 2015 and the PBC team is working hard to lineup a great group of educators and presenters.

 

Education is a foundational pillar of Patriot Boot Camp.

 

For each Patriot Boot Camp we bring in approximately 30 professionals to present about startup, product, business development and finance topics. Each Patriot Boot Camp is unique in the sense that we never have exactly the same lineup of speakers or the same order of presentations.

 

PBC-UNC-2015-Education-Drach-Small

Dave Drach of Techstars expertly presenting on business development at PBC.

 

The PBC team spends a lot of time before each event getting to know every presenter and vetting their experience through phone calls and email exchanges. We pride ourselves on running a high caliber program, and the wrong presenter or the wrong message (for instance, promoting a multi level marketing program) could detract from our focus on delivering a quality experience.

 

Below is a list of topics we seek to cover at each Patriot Boot Camp.

 

Patriot Boot Camp Experience

  • The PBC alumni perspective

  • How to build mentor relationships

  • Where to go after Patriot Boot Camp

Product Topics

  • What problem are you solving?

  • Early stage product validation and product/market fit

  • Building and growing your product

  • Product design and user experience

Startup Topics

  • How to pitch your idea/product/startup

  • The importance of cofounders and mistakes to avoid

  • How to build company culture for a scalable business

  • Startup marketing and business development

  • Lean Startup methodology and Business Model Canvas

  • Legal advice for early stage companies

  • Community resources (incubators, accelerators, etc)

Finance Topics

  • Business models - how will you make money?

  • Business growth and capital solutions

  • Metrics, costs and capital efficiencies

Event Recap: Patriot Boot Camp in Chapel Hill, North Carolina

The University of North Carolina hosted a Patriot Boot Camp in Chapel Hill from July 31 to August 2, 2015. This was the first Patriot Boot Camp run in the Southeast, and the support from the local community was outstanding.  

PBC - UNC - 2015 - Group Photo

 

The Chapel Hill cohort can be summed up by the following metrics:

  • 46 military veterans/spouses participated
  • 40 unique startup companies
  • 28 presenters shared their expertise
  • 40 mentors volunteered their time
  • 303 organized mentor sessions (25 minutes each)
  • 7500+ minutes of professional mentorship

 

PBC - UNC - 2015 - Sponsors

 

The event also garnered some excellent local media coverage:

 

ABC 11 News

PBC - UNC - 2015 - ABC11 News

 

Herald-Sun Newspaper

PBC - UNC - 2015 - Herald-Sun

 

WNCN News

PBC - UNC - 2015 - WNCN News

Guest Blog Post: Techstars’ No-Nonsense Basic Training for Veteran Entrepreneurs - A PBC Review

[author] [author_image timthumb='on']https://storage.googleapis.com/pbc_app_default_bucket/Tyler-Matthews-Photo.jpg[/author_image] [author_info]Tyler Matthews is an Army Captain and the Chief of Staff of SoloPro. He attended Patriot Boot Camp in July, 2015 at the University of North Carolina.[/author_info] [/author]

I spent last weekend at the University of North Carolina attending Patriot Boot Camp (PBC), a Techstars backed summit for servicemembers and veterans interested in learning how to launch and build technology startups.

PBC 2015 - Chapel Hill and Durham Road Signs

As a transitioning Army officer interested in entrepreneurship and tech, PBC was just what I needed. From the Pledge of Allegiance Friday morning to Retired Army General George Casey’s keynote address Sunday, this three day “Boot Camp” was a high octane crash course in the fundamentals of starting startups.

The purpose of the event was to equip veterans and military spouses with the knowledge and tools necessary to succeed as entrepreneurs.  Having recognized that veterans possess traits and skills essential to entrepreneurial success -- among them adaptability, planning, dedication, discipline, and relentless resourcefulness -- Techstars set out to add to their foundation by providing Vets with startup education, community, and mentorship.

But unlike many other well-intentioned veteran-centered events, Boot Camp was highly organized, deliberate, and pragmatic from start to finish.  It was a no-nonsense event with a task and purpose for every minute on the agenda.

Throughout the weekend, Techstars presented us with extended access to experts across the startup community. For me, the highlights stemmed from the organizers’ ability to smoothly package and deliver three things that those who have served are well familiar with: training, coaching, and mentoring.

1. Relevant Training.

Just like military leaders must know doctrine to plan operations and accomplish their missions, entrepreneurs must also master the fundamentals of building sound businesses that can grow and scale. Patriot Boot Camp was committed to education from the outset. Weeks ahead of the conference, participants received an extensive reading list from which to prepare. Each day at the event, CEOs, founders, investors, and mentors led classes and seminars. The material was vast in terms of depth and breadth.

Tommy Sowers (CEO of SoloPro) taught us how to leverage the foundations of military planning in an early stage startup. Dave Drach (VP of Techstars) taught the importance of finding product-market fit, and being careful not to over-execute too quickly. Leaning on the foundations of Steve Blank, Rob Johnson of Techstars taught the process of customer discovery and development, and Taylor McLemore of PBC covered how startups can “rock the pitch” to investors. That was just the first eight hours.

 PBC 2015 - Tommy CEO of SoloPro

In days 2-3 we got an introduction to Product Management from Anthony Pompliano of Facebook, advice on best practices fundraising from local venture capitalists, and a crash course in digital marketing.

By the end of the weekend, we had been schooled in the principles of Blank, Feld, and Ries, walked through the business model canvas, discussed product-user feedback loops, and covered the highlights of lean startups and analytics. The education alone was worth the trip. But Boot Camp did not stop there.

2. Expert Individual and Collective Coaching.

The quality of the cohort of advisors in attendance was stellar, and coaching entrepreneurs was a key focus of the event. In the first 48 hours I received coaching on how to outline a business idea, conduct customer discovery, pitch to investors, raise funding, build a team, split-test, and grow. Attendees who came to the conference with an idea left with a gameplan for execution.

PBC 2015 - Dave Cass of Uvize

My favorite sessions were those led by domain experts. Taylor McLermore’s deliberate coaching on rocking a pitch, Corey Post’s digital marketing talk, Tak Lo’s instruction on the importance of mastering e-mail efficiency and with tact, and Dave Drach’s coaching on early stage sales were all especially helpful.

3. Unparalleled Mentoring.

But for me, the highlight of PBC -- and what makes this conference so special -- is the emphasis on mentorship. Dave Cass, CEO of Uvize (a mentorship platform), told all of us early and often to take advantage of the mentors who had traveled from all over the world (Bay Area to London) to help veterans and spouses. The 50+ mentors included a blend of investors, founders, and educators, and hailed from the likes of Techstars, UNC, Google, and Facebook.

Each afternoon -- in what from a distance could be mistaken for speed dating -- PBC veterans sat down with mentors for one on one conversations about their products, their ideas, their businesses, and their transitions from the military to the startup space. These high impact sessions were half an hour each, but each mentor that I met with in these sessions (10 in total), without exception, has already followed-up and promised to keep in touch. The sincerity, authenticity, and “give first” mentality of the mentors at PBC was unbelievable, and difficult to imagine in or out of the military.

Mentorship Sessions at Patriot Boot Camp

To those in attendance, the outcome of these sessions was clear: PBC and Techstars are creating a tight-knit family of capable veterans, spouses, and mentors who will benefit from network effects and the support of one another as they grow and scale.

And there were many other highlights: In the evenings we were exposed to incredible startup hubs like American Underground (Durham) and Launch Chapel Hill, and to the world class facilities and offerings of UNC and the Kenan-Flager Business School. And more importantly, during the final day’s pitch competition we were exposed to other founders and entrepreneurs launching businesses that will change the world.

Onward to Motor City.

PBC and Techstars ascribe to a simple mantra: Give First. Their values -- education, community, and mentorship -- were clearly communicated and reiterated throughout the conference. At the conference selfless service and energy are palpable and ubiquitous.

Through outstanding training, committed coaching, and deliberate mentoring through a relentlessly focused agenda, Patriot Boot Camp delivered.

Just like new Soldiers must go to Basic Training to learn to shoot, move, and communicate, entrepreneurs must master the basics. To that end, Techstars has succeeded in building a Boot Camp capable of providing outstanding training and mentorship in a brief period of time.

Our country needs more Vets in the technology startup space. Thankfully, Techstars has succeeded in creating a conference in true startup fashion that is scalable and repeatable, and will be running more boot camps in the months and years to come.

The next one is this October in Detroit. If you know of a veteran or a military spouse that wants to scale their startup savvy rapidly, urge them to enlist in the next Patriot Boot Camp. They could make no finer choice.

 

Tyler Matthews is an active duty Army captain. Everything here is his own opinion and does not necessarily reflect the views of his unit or the U.S. Army.

Q&A With PBC Alumni Bob Moran

How did you get interested in the military, and what did you do in the Marine Corps? I wanted to be a Marine since I was a teenager and a recruiter came to our Boy Scout meeting in his dress blues. After high school I was appointed to the Naval Academy where I majored in Applied Science (the computer science major of that day, when our computers were mainframes in a data center).

Upon graduation I was commissioned as a 2ndLt in the Marine Corps. I served during the Cold War. After The Basic School I served as an infantry officer in 2nd Battalion, 1st Marines at Camp Pendleton. After being 3rd platoon commander, I served as the S-3A and Battalion Legal Officer. My final duty station was Guard Officer of the Marine unit at NAS Brunswick in Maine.

 

Bob Moran competing in the Pitch Competition at PBC NY in 2015. Bob Moran competing in the Pitch Competition at PBC NY in 2015.

  What made you interested in starting a technology company, and how did you get involved with Patriot Boot Camp?

I got hooked on creating a tech company after reading "Innovation & Entrepreneurship" by Peter Drucker.  My first tech company was CompuGuide Services and we built web intranet sites for Merck pharmaceutical at their global headquarters in Whitehouse Station, NJ.

This time around I'm building a mobile app/web company called The University Prosperity League. UPL helps recent college grads (and their parents) convert career aspirations into career achievement by conducting fun tournaments for teams of five alumni and their assigned mentors. Matches are played against teams from rival schools.

A friend introduced me to Al Doan who introduced me to John Hrivnak, the rest as they say, is history.  I attended in NYC in 2014 and 2015, both events were superb!

 

What have you gained through your your Patriot Boot Camp participation?

Patriot Boot Camp transformed my thinking about myself and my odds as an entrepreneur.

My view of myself went from being "an individual entrepreneur toiling alone" into "a member of a vibrant community of fellow veterans" where the other entrepreneurs, speakers and staff all conveyed the message that my military background gave me a depth of transferable skills that could help me succeed as an entrepreneur.

The encouraging words of the mentors on the Saturday sessions and afterwards have been a boost.  The pitch competition on the stage of Goldman-Sachs was another high point of my PBC experience.  The breadth of topics and the industry expertise of the speakers is excellent.  Craig Newmark, Robin Chase, Paul Walker, and Joanne Wilson are four that have made an ongoing impression.

Out of last year's PBC I took advantage of the generous offer from John Robinson and Michelle Markey of the Kauffman Foundation and participated in their first-ever "FastTrac for Veteran Entrepreneurs" ten week online course.  Taylor's event staff last year and Sean's team this year have built something that is truly remarkable.

 

What is next on your entrepreneurial journey?

Currently I have taken mentor Adam Berk up on his "MilValChal" and theUPL.net is completing 100 Customer Development interviews in 50 days.  In parallel with UPL, I have an ongoing interest in "paying it forward" by blogging about entrepreneurship on venturedad.us as well as actively participating in the PBC community on uvize.com.

I intend on entering the Rising Stars program, after I consult with my mentors from PBC.  I actively promote the incredible Patriot Boot Camp opportunity for veterans via the USNA Entrepreneurs LinkedIn group and my other social media networks.  I hope to come back to PBC as an alumni mentor, or other volunteer, next year in NYC.

Guest Blog Post: Bridget Platt of Daddy's Deployed

[author] [author_image timthumb='on']https://storage.googleapis.com/pbc_app_default_bucket/Bridget-Platt-Daddys-Deployed.jpg[/author_image] [author_info]
When she is not running the show at Daddy's Deployed, Bridget Platt is busy being "Mommy," while supporting her Marine. [/author_info] [/author] Over the past few years, I have been honored to speak at local organizations as an advocate for military families. During the q&a session of my first talk, a man raised his hand and asked why I started my business. My husband, who had returned from a seven-month deployment a week earlier, gave me an encouraging smile from his seat and I answered without thinking: “I was terrified my daughter wouldn’t know who her father was,” and tried to blink away the tears through the empathetic gasps from the audience.

 

Platt Family - Daddys Deployed

 

I was never planning to be an entrepreneur: I was an English teacher. That all changed when Craig deployed when our daughter was six-months-old. I watched her confused stare as I tried to teach her the sign language for “Dad,” and knew I had to do something. On a road trip from North Carolina back home to Illinois, my business was born: I would create personalized children’s books that explained complex military topics to children. Books that make each military family the star, including family member names, ethnicity, hair and eye color, military parent branch of service and uniform worn. There was only one problem: I had no idea how to start a business and hated asking people for help.

 

As quickly as I was able to swallow my pride, my business started growing. I read every book (The Lean Start-Up by Eric Reis is my favorite), learned how to formulate an LLC, register a trademark, obtain a text copyright, and operate a successful online business. I have grown into an effective, compassionate CEO and I wake up every day knowing we are doing great things. Of course, there have been a few hiccups along the way and I believe that the most important thing I have learned is to trust my intuition. The only fails we have had happened when I went against my gut.

 

Daddys Deployed - Book Cover

 

I find myself continuously saying how helpful everyone in the start-up community has been. Being a military spouse entrepreneur is difficult: often, we live far away from our families, we are full-time parents and partners, and it may seem that there are few other like-minded spouses nearby. We are currently stationed in Eastern North Carolina and there are very few start-up resources here: there is no exciting buzz of an 1871 or 1776 incubator, no local conferences to attend, but as veterans and military spouses, we are lucky enough to have programs like Patriot Boot Camp, V-WISE, and Inc. Magazine’s Military Entrepreneur Program available.

 

The friendships and mentor relationships I’ve formed as a result of these amazing programs has greatly assisted in our becoming a growing, profitable business that helps families who have sacrificed so much for our country.

PBC Talks Veteran Entrepreneurship with Congress

[author] [author_image timthumb='on']https://storage.googleapis.com/pbc_app_default_bucket/Taylor-McLemore-PBC-NY-2015.png[/author_image] [author_info]Taylor McLemore founded Patriot Boot Camp in 2012 to address the gaps in entrepreneurial support that military members, Veterans and their spouses often encounter as technology entrepreneurs.[/author_info] [/author]

I am a big believer that questions are always more important than answers.

Recently, I had the opportunity to be part of a discussion on Veteran Entrepreneurship in Washington DC, and we touched on three questions I believe are critical:

  • Are the current transition programs building pathways to successful entrepreneurship?
  • How do we get entrepreneurial education and startup resources to Veterans?
  • Is the GI Bill equipped to educate the next generation of Veteran entrepreneurs and builders of tech companies?

I do not have the answers to those questions, but how you approach a question is more important than answers.

The Congressional Caucus on Innovation & Entrepreneurship convened a great group of people for this conversation on April 22 to discuss the state of Veteran entrepreneurship and ideas for how to improve entrepreneurial opportunities for all Service People.

I (Taylor) had the pleasure of joining that panel of superb people serving Veteran entrepreneurs and moderated by David Calone. The panel included Todd Connor (The Bunker Chicago),  John Gossart (RideScout), and Dr. Phil Potter (The Bunker Tacoma) . The audience was a combination of Congressional leaders, including Rep. Jared Polis, and Congressional Staffers.


2015-Congressional-Caucus-on-Innovation-Entrepreneurship


The panel discussed the questions above and other topics, and a few themes and additional questions emerged.

  1. Veterans have been and always will be amazing entrepreneurs, and it is nearly impossible to underinvest in Veteran entrepreneurs

  2. Outcomes will only improve if we make entrepreneurial education and resources available sooner in the transition process

  3. Entrepreneurial education takes many forms--some match traditional education delivery (lectures, reading, etc.) and others like mentoring do not

  4. All of the entrepreneurial panelists pushed the lawmakers to think like entrepreneurs: move quickly, test often, and iterate constantly

As I said, I do not have the answers to those challenging questions, but here is the approach we are taking at Patriot Boot Camp:

  • Make Patriot Boot Camp available to as many entrepreneurial Veterans and Military Spouses as possible

  • Build a culture of support and the #givefirst mentality to the next Veteran entrepreneur has better access and support than the last

 

 

 

Guest Video Blog Post: CauseEngine Feedback On Patriot Boot Camp

[author] [author_image timthumb='on']https://media.licdn.com/media/AAEAAQAAAAAAAAOBAAAAJDliNmY5YzllLTk2ZDQtNDBiZC04YTVkLWZhZjVmZWE4NGY2Yg.jpg[/author_image] [author_info]Mackenzie Tobin-Padell is the Co-Founder and Client Director at CauseEngine. Mackenzie is a proud military spouse and the mother of two young children. Mackenzie and the CauseEngine team attended Patriot Boot Camp in 2015.[/author_info] [/author] [youtube id=aNSOBpZgyEs]

July 2015 PBC Event Announced for Chapel Hill, North Carolina

Patriot Boot Camp Presented by Techstars is coming to the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill, North Carolina from July 31 to August 2, 2015. UNC - Online Logo

Patriot Boot Camp (PBC) is an intensive 3-day program focused on helping military Veterans and spouses become technology entrepreneurs. The PBC program has a focus on technology oriented startups, specifically web-based or other software companies.

 

UNC - CSLD Foyer

 

PBC is free for all participants. The application process for the Chapel Hill event will open in early May 2015.