Brad Feld sent me one of those cryptic notes last September, with an ask “Do you know Eythor?” It is amazing how he has latched on to this notion that I should be able to get a hold of anyone in Iceland with relative ease, because I remember telling him when he came to Iceland in 2012 that everyone knows everyone in Iceland. Anyways, I digress, Eythor is the brother of one of my former colleagues in the bank, so I responded by saying yes I know of him and oh, btw, he is related to my wife through some distant family ties… it is Iceland 🙂 Brad Feld connected me to Brad Bernthal, who had been interacting with Eythor about a joint initiative between Boulder and Iceland. Brad Bernthal introduced me to the Startup Colorado and Startup Summer program offered by University of Colorado, that embeds undergraduate interns into startups in Colorado. He continued that It is a great program as the interns get meaningful exposure to the startups and, in addition, they meet at least weekly as a full group to (1) learn from startup leaders in the area, and (2) develop their own business ideas. The summer ends with an intern pitch night in which the startup summer participants pitch their own ideas. One idea is that we invite students in Iceland to potentially participate in the during Summer ’14 and, if something similar can be spun up in Iceland, we also could look to do some type of summer exchange. I was like… Awesome! heck ya, totally aligns with my philosophy of building bridges from Iceland to other startup communities, so I reached out to Ari the Rector of Reykjavik University and we immediately got his support to proceed. For those asking is Colorado is the right place? Here is a Forbes article which states that Colorado launches a Startup every 72 hours! We have been in a number of meetings and I just got message from Austin Chamers who is responsible for the program that the application materials for Startup Summer 2014 are up and ready.
- Follow this link and fill out the application.
- The application process for students from Iceland will be expedited if they have a background in computer science or engineering. Applicants seeking positions in management, marketing, or ‘soft’ skills may be delayed, depending on the number of positions available and the overall pool of applicants.
- We will work to pair applicants with a suitable company, and encourage these companies to take the exchange students
- We will set up a Skype interview to make any final arrangements