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Startup-Weekend-Education-RGB_REVERSE-BLK_rgb-v0.4Since 2010, Startup Weekend Education has empowered people around the world, giving them not only a seat at the table and a voice, but equipping them to bring new education solutions to life.

Startup Weekend Education’s early success resulted in requests from the community to expand its offerings to support entrepreneurs beyond the initial launch of a new edtech product. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation provided a huge boost to make expansion possible.

In the fall of 2013, a new leadership team was hired. By the following summer, Education Entrepreneurs made its debut, strengthening and scaling Startup Weekend Education events, while expanding support for aspiring entrepreneurs with Startup Digest Education, Workshops, Summits, and online resources. Partnerships with Edsurge, Imagine K12, and 4.0 Schools gave participants even more support on their entrepreneurial journey.

To date, Education Entrepreneurs has helped over 6,000 people across 6 continents play an active role in shaping the future of education. (See full impact report here). Last year alone, Education Entrepreneurs hosted 46 Startup Weekend Education events worldwide, including 22 in the United States, as well as 9 workshops or meetups.



A New Chapter

Education Entrepreneurs’ parent organization, UP Global, recently announced it is joining Techstars. UP Global and Techstars are committed to education entrepreneurship and growing the Education Entrepreneurs Community.To that end, Techstars has established a partnership with leading education incubator 4.0 Schools, who will operate Startup Weekend Education events and Workshops across the United States while the Techstars Community Programs team will continue to service Startup Weekend Education events taking place outside of the U.S.

Effective immediately, all Education Entrepreneurs programming in the United States will be operated by the 4.0 Schools team. Startup Weekend Education and other resources initiated under Education Entrepreneurs will join 4.0’s other two flagship programs for education entrepreneurs, Essentials (a three day workshop) and Launch (a three month incubator).   From this starting point, 4.0’s Essentials and Launch programs and other opportunities like Startup Next and Techstars’ accelerator programs will serve as a cohesive pathway for entrepreneurs emerging from these events around the country.

The Techstars Community Programs team will continue to support Startup Weekend Education events taking place outside of the U.S., and those Organizers will also have the option to access education-specific resources and opportunities offered by 4.0 Schools. As part of the transition to 4.0 Schools, Mandela Schumacher-Hodge, who has led Education Entrepreneurs global expansion the past two years, is stepping down from her role as Director. Mandela is excited to continue supporting the development of entrepreneurs around the world via her new project, and she looks forward to participating in the Education Entrepreneurs community as a volunteer and advisor. John Baldo, the Program Manager for Education Entrepreneurs, will be joining 4.0 Schools full-time to continue his work supporting the Education Entrepreneurs community.

Education Entrepreneurs and 4.0 Schools share a commitment to developing and training incredible education entrepreneurs who will imagine new ventures that improve and reimagine education. This shared commitment has already led to a slate of entrepreneurs who have benefited from both programs – including the teams behind Fantasy Geopolitics, Classtracks, Vidcode, and ImagiLabs. This new partnership aims to provide many more education-focused teams with the launchpad and support they need to create new education solutions. Moving forward, the EE and 4.0 Schools communities will be a united movement of entrepreneurs, educators, parents, teachers, students, and others working to improve education through entrepreneurship.



Want to learn more? Attend office hours on Thursday at 1pm central time and Friday at 2pm central time – Click to join or call in: +1-415-655-0001, code: 192 090 557.

Additional questions? See below for FAQs, press, and to submit any questions you may have.

Interested in getting involved? Register to attend an event, or apply to organize one in your community.

Want to learn about 4.0 Schools? Go to their website at www.4pt0.org or follow them on twitter. You can also read this report on their work. You can find Startup Weekend Education’s new home here.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why is Techstars partnering with 4.0 Schools? How are you better together?

Techstars is partnering with 4.0 Schools because we both have a strong commitment to the growth of education entrepreneurship and we believe that we can accomplish more in this domain together than we could separately. Working with 4.0 Schools, who already runs earlier stage programming with their Essentials and Launch programs, provides a cohesive pathway for early-stage education entrepreneurs to grow into follow on programs like Startup Next or an accelerator program like Techstars.

How is the partnership going to work?

Techstars and 4.0 schools will work closely together to continue to grow education entrepreneurship and the mission of Education Entrepreneurs. 4.0 Schools will operate Startup Weekend Education events across the United States while the Techstars Community Programs team will continue to service Startup Weekend Education events taking place outside of the U.S.

What will be the difference between support for Startup Weekend Education events in the United States and those organized internationally?

4.0 Schools will directly support Startup Weekend Education events organized in the United States.  Their team will directly support organizers to fuel ticket sales, strategize on mentors and judges, connect with local educators, etc.  International organizers will be supported directly by the Startup Weekend team at Techstars, like any other Startup Weekend event.  New resources created by 4.0 specifically for education entrepreneurs at Startup Weekend will be shared with all Startup Weekend Education organizers, including those internationally.

Will anything change about Startup Weekend Education programming?

Nope. For now, you can expect things to operate just as they always have.  Over time, 4.0 will work with local organizers to supplement existing materials with additional education-specific resources that will support Startup Weekend Education teams to focus their efforts on the toughest challenges facing students, families, and teachers.

How will the partnership affect the employees at Startup Weekend Education?

John Baldo will be joining the 4.0 Schools team full-time to continue to support Startup Weekend Education programming across the United States.  Mandela Schumacher-Hodge will be moving on, but is committed to supporting the development of entrepreneurs around the world via her new project. She will continue to serve as a volunteer, mentor, facilitator, and advisor for Startup Weekend Education events.

Is Techstars planning any other similar partnerships for other programming?

No, not at this time, but Techstars is open to new partnerships that can help advance specific domain areas and 4.0 schools is a perfect complement for the work that Techstars and UP Global have done in edtech.

How do I get involved in Startup Weekend Education?

Find an event to attend at educationentrepreneurs.co/attend.  To apply to run a Startup Weekend Education event in your hometown, go to http://www.educationentrepreneurs.co/organize.   To stay up to date on all future Startup Weekend Education events in the United States, join 4.0’s mailing list here.

How can I learn more about 4.0 Schools and their work?

Lots of ways. Go to their website at www.4pt0.org or follow them on twitter. You can also read this report on their work.


Sara Sonnen Sara Sonnen
Sara is the Email Marketing Manager at Techstars. Previously, Sara was the Email Marketing Manager at UPGlobal before Techstars acquired the company in 2015. Sara graduated with a Bachelors of Arts in Journalism and Business Administration from Washington State University.