014: Matt Menietti (Executive Director, GlobalHack)

Matt Menietti on Innovation City

“The world of work is changing so rapidly, especially around technology… it’s not a matter of “if” it’s “when” these industries will be affected by technology. It’s a matter of how we get those students future-ready.” — Matt Menietti

Welcome to Innovation City—powered by Venture Cafe—where Tyler Kelley and Michael Johnson, Co-Founders of SLAM! Agency, interview innovators, creators, and disruptors to discover how business is changing in the modern world.

Created and produced by SLAM! Agency in conjunction with Venture Cafe St. Louis and Venture Cafe Miami, Innovation City gives you an inside look at how rapidly business and culture are changing thanks to increasing diversity and inclusion, heightened creativity, and a stronger and better-connected business community.

Today’s guest is Matt Menietti, one of the big names in the St. Louis startup scene. Matt is the Executive Director of GlobalHack. Before that, he was part of two nationally-ranked accelerator programs; serving first as the Director of Operations for Capital Innovators and then as Venture Partner at SixThirty. A former St. Louis Business Journal 30 Under 30 honoree, Matt is also a former AmeriCORPS VISTA member, and a cofounder of an online resource-sharing tool for nonprofits, GoodMap, that won seed funding through the YouthBridge Social Enterprise Competition.

Tyler and Michael first met Matt at GlobalHack VI in 2016, GlobalHack’s largest hackathon to date. GlobalHack VI was focused on innovating and hacking solutions for homelessness. The next GlobalHack, GlobalHack VII, is October 12-14, 2018, at Chaifetz Arena in St. Louis, MO, with Saint Louis University serving as host and title sponsor. The focus of GlobalHack VII will be foreign-born populations; how to improve the American experience for immigrants and refugees. Find Matt online at: @MattMenietti on Twitter and Instagram.

They discuss:

  • What is a hackathon?
  • How to manage a hackathon
  • The benefits of hosting a hackathon
  • The international appeal of GlobalHack
  • How the challenges of being a triathlete compare to running GlobalHack
  • Growing up in San Antonio
  • The idea behind GlobalHack: Improving the tech ecosystem in St. Louis
  • GlobalHack’s founders: Travis Sheridan of Venture Cafe, Gabe Lozano of LockerDome, Drew Winship of Juristat
  • Startup Weekend, where Juristat began
  • Building businesses versus writing business plans
  • Moving from hackathons for big businesses to hackathons for the civic space
  • Creating change in the nonprofit sector, an area that is typically averse to change
  • Providing accessible computer science opportunities for kids in low income areas
  • Talent is more important than capital
  • Being future-ready
  • Building with, not for
  • Technology as a tool not as a savior
  • How to accelerate getting shots on goal
  • How important the human element is to any business endeavor
  • How to create connections between nonprofits
  • The bite-size projects: building timesheets for Circus Harmony
  • Code With a Cause
  • The importance of listening
  • Why schools need to change their curriculum to better prepare students for the rapidly changing world of work
  • Teaching children to be intellectually curious
  • How to be resourceful and learn things quickly
  • Online resources and after school programs for computer science
  • James Clear and the importance of discipline, focus, and consistency
  • The International Institute