UC Davis Pre-College Program: Startup Entrepreneurship

UC Davis Pre-College Startup Entrepreneurship Program is targeted at high school students interested in learning how to build a product or start a company now.

For years, technology entrepreneurship has been defined by a mantra of “move fast and break things.” This ethos worked well when startups were disrupting software and silicon. It does not work as well in the industries being disrupted now; food and agriculture, healthcare and medicine (including veterinary medicine), energy and transportation, and engineering. In these industries, if you move fast and break things, you might kill somebody.

The entrepreneurial landscape is changing dramatically in these industries and entrepreneurs need new tools to approach technology innovation. During the program, students will focus on seeking the training, education, and practical experience necessary to succeed as technology founders.

Students will focus on hands-on application of lessons, with the opportunity to:

  • Meet and network with startup founders
  • Work through the Lean Business Model canvas
  • Discover what investors look for in good startup ideas
  • Create and experiment with their own business models
  • Interview customers in an effort to identify product-market fit

The curriculum has been deliberately designed and selected to move students beyond theoretical reasoning and into the practical experience of building, tinkering, experimenting, and rebuilding. By the end of the summer program, students will have gone through the effort of building a real, functioning business in the emerging industries that benefit from the world-class research at UC Davis.

Course Code