Minutes from June 2009 Meeting

June 2, 2009

From: Howie Rhee <hwr2@duke.edu>

Date: Tue, Jun 2, 2009 at 12:55 PM
Subject: notes from Startup House meeting, June 2, 2009
To: Sidney Primas <sidney.primas@gmail.com>, Larry Moneta <larry.moneta@duke.edu>

Good meeting.  Thanks for the time and advice, Larry.

Sid is on board and will start to identify the 3-4 students with a goal towards a meeting with Nowicki et al in October.


    Like penn has tech house

    And umaryland may have something


    Larry moneta

    Sidney primas


    Housing is very cherished commodity


    So giving up housing to some space that has access - requires compelling argument



    What is the distinctive residential value add.


    So the gameplay would be a cadre of students that would buy into this.  With howie advising



    And then a presentation.  And then get steve nowicki in the room.

    And larry moneta representing co-curricular side



    We provided a seed grant for ubuntu group.


    Making an argument that it would have meaning.


    And the residential component made sense for that group


    Provided a grant so they could do advertising, host some info sessions.  Do some blue sky planning sessions.


    And bring forward a more comprehensive proposal and budgets.


    And then we offered on central campus.  And commiting to vacating one apartment for a common area.


    So significant investment from duke.


    Come fall - ubuntu house will be in place on central campus, with a cadre of 15 who will live there and 10 or 12.


    They put together elaborate plan for speakers.


    Conversation sessions.

    Whole bunch of things that give life.


    4 students that did the whole ubuntu house.


    Vision can be wild and wacky at the outset.  Embedded in there, enough substance, throwing some resources.


    Everything ready in november of  room picks planning process.


    Would need to have refined by October


    There's a long lead time.


    How long did it take the other students to do this house?  It took one year.

    They started in fall, and did for another fall.


    They existed as a pre-residential group - given through


    Bypassed DSG.  So they could legitimately have posters, and host sessions.


    So the model is if between now and early fall, the small group, big vision thing evolves.  And an early fall presentation - has enough authenticity, to have interim standing at duke.


    And the rest of the year is growing a larger cadre of students.   And that's all tightened up by next summer.


    Ironically - finding the money part of it tends to be easiest thing.


    Bureacracy - not big - two hurdles. Larry and steve.


    Hardest thing is getting the students commited to it.  More than just a couple of students.


    What's interesting is that one of the distinctions could be combination grad and undergraduate.  We have no models of things that are integrated.  And central is the only place where we have undergrads and grads living nearby.


    6,000 grad students, only need 5 or 6.


    We have grad students living with undergrads as paid staff.

    But this would be different.


    Poll: "are there conditions where you would find this appealling"


    This would be different from focus program.

    Focus program would be a feeder.



    The problem is we have 20 different eship groups at duke that are not connected.




    2010 freshman making picks for 2011


    Ubuntu did not have an advisor.  They had a more entrenched student culture.




    Sidney: I want contact info for people that started ubuntu.



    Lmoneta: prepare for it for next october


    It could exist january 2010.  that gives some seasoning. Allows for things.



    Mine both DVF and TDE for candidates for this.  Whether they want to take it on - I wouldn't presume to have DVF become the presidential group or not.


    But the first place I would go if I were sid is talk to the leadership and say "does this appeal".


    Whatever we are considering today - there will be another version.


    And let's just prime the pump.





    Sid: could we live together next year?


    Larry: there are blocking options, but I think it's distracting to create a half-baked version.  I think the programming in the pre-residential is better.


    You get one opportunity to make a first impression - so the launch.


    There's no shortage of what could be done as a pre-residential group.






    The "big thing" why residential - it's there -- Would need to be fleshed out.



  1. Passion
  2. Commitment
  3. And articulation of big vision

    Steve and I would say with the ubuntu students - is they were really commited to the cause.


    There is no shortage of initiatives at duek that are half-assed.




    Is there something in particular that is of interest to larry moneta?


    I've seen it in other places.  I like the idea of a community of creative artists.  It has a spillover effect.

    Has greater external impact.  I'm just as interested in the broader environmental - 30-50 beds on central with a green community.


    The ones that have cascading consequences. Rather than the more insular.


    It's part of the "more pluralistic selective living community" than just the fraternities.  Not that there's anything wrong with them.



    These communities.


    Key thing "what is important about this for Duke?" 



    How many people look into startup house - as many as 30, as small as 12.


    Under 10 doesn't make a community.


    And "adjunct membership" so you can be a part of the community.







    Early fall - handful of students meet with eddie hull (housing), zoyla, joe gonzales (residence life) and maybe steve nowicki.  3 or 4 students ask for a meeting.  May not even have a handout.


    That's needed early fall.


    Small but potent cadre of students that really get it.


    And larry moneta stay involve on an fyi basis. 





    Chris Roby and Larry Moneta and Howie Rhee


    In some respects Howie  can connect.



    Process: Small group - big vision, eventually becomes bigger group, more refined vision.


  5. Why residential?
  6. Cadre of students
  7. Proposal
  8. Seed grant - $5000
  9. budget

Howie Rhee, MBA
Managing Director
Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation
Fuqua School of Business, Duke University
Room E167J
919-923-7113 mobile