Longhorn Startup fosters interdisciplinary startup innovation at the University of Texas at Austin. Undergraduate students from computer science, engineering, business, and other related disciplines come together to turn great ideas into great companies while receiving instruction and mentoring from successful entrepreneurs.

  • Longhorn Startup Seminar is a lecture-based course in the fall semester that features prominent entrepreneurs telling the stories of how they founded their companies and answering questions from the students. Students get to pitch their idea to the class and participate in speed-dating events to meet potential co-founders and mentors.

  • Longhorn Startup Lab is an intensive project-based course in the spring semester that identifies student entrepreneurs who are building scalable technology companies and gets them course credit for working on their startups while still in school. These students receive weekly one-on-one mentoring sessions with successful entrepreneurs and free coworking memberships at Capital Factory.

The semester culminates with Demo Day, where the students present their companies to other students, faculty, entrepreneurs, investors, and the Austin startup community. This is one of the highest visibility entrepreneurship oriented events that has attracted the attention of guest speakers like Mark Cuban and Michael Dell. The event provides ample opportunity to engage with many of our most driven tech minds.

The class is taught by UT Computer Science instructor and serial entrepreneur, Joshua Baer, who founded Capital Factory, a startup incubator and co-working space in Austin, Texas. Josh founded his first startup in 1996 in his college dormitory at Carnegie Mellon University. He was recently recognized as the Austin Community Leader of the Year, Tribeza Person of the Year, Henry Crown Fellow at the Aspen Institute, and an Eisenhower Fellow.


Students must apply to be considered for the Longhorn Startup program. If you are accepted, you will be manually added to the course by the UTCS academic staff.

Students must apply as teams. If you would like to participate but do not have a team, you can contact Josh Baer directly, and he will consider you for one of the teams if possible.