3 Day Startup

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3 Day Startup is a international entrepreneurship program created in 2008 at the University of Texas with the mission to "kickstart new student-run companies and build entrepreneurial capabilities in students and their university communities."[1] The organization collaborates with universities to host intensive, weekend-long workshops designed for teams to research a promising concept, conduct target audience interviews, and complete at least a working prototype. Since 2008, it has expanded to 123 schools in 26 countries. Alumni of the program have raised more than $70 million in capital.[2]


  • Bart Bohn, Founding Mentor
  • Cam Houser, CEO
  • Joel Hestness, COO
  • Ruchit Shah, CSO
  • Maia Donohue, Program Manager
  • Carlos Estrada, Program Manager
  • Alexis Taylor, Program Manager
  • Alex Maingot, Program Manager
  • Jackson Dyre-Borowicz, Program Manager; Enterprise
  • Ben Cantey, Program Manager; Enterprise
  • Thomas Finsterbusch, Original Founder
  • Efraim Pettersson, SE Asia Program Lead


Applications for the next class of 3DS are currently unavailable, but those interested in learning more, participating in, or hosting a 3DS program may get in contact through this form.

Program Timeline

  • Bootcamp (1-2 weeks before program date): Students selected for the program familiarize themselves with entrepreneurship principles as well all helpful tips to maximize their productivity and efficiency at the 3DS program.
  • Day 1: Participants arrive – with or without startup ideas – and a facilitator leads the group through dedicated brainstorming, preliminary pitches/feedback, and team selection modules. Some teams work late into the night and others prefer to rest up in preparation for day 2.
  • Day 2: Customer discovery (teams exit the building or hit the phones and talk to potential customers), structured mentorship, intermediate pitches and feedback sessions. Day 2 places heavy emphasis on business model generation.
  • Day 3: Continued execution (including pitch workshops) leading into final pitches/demos to an esteemed panel of mentors and investors.[3]

3 Day Startup Houston

Rice University and the University of Houston co-host the Houston 3DS program at TMCx, the Texas Medical Center accelerator. In 2015, Rice Launch and the Cyvia and Melvyn Wolff Center for Entrepreneurship at the Univeristy of Houston reached out to their respective campus constituents, which culminated in 40 budding entrepreneurs teaming up to construct their product idea. Hesam Panahi, Ph.D. of the University of Houston and the Rice Entrepreneurship Initiative has served as the program's facilitator.

The Houston 3DS program constrains entrepreneurial ventures to be software-related; the product created after the workshop must be some sort of application or hardware incorporating innovative software.