I teach at Duke & started RocketBolt

Earned a PhD in English while teaching myself to code and build companies. I enjoy sharing my entrepreneurial and academic misadventures.

Instagram Stories: Day #3 – Student Pitches

Today was another “pitch day” in my Learning to Fail class. To add a bit of context, the class incorporates a semester-long pitch competition where students compete against each other to identify the biggest entrepreneurial opportunity on campus. The competition is organized as a bracket, and this was our second round. We went from eight […]

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5 Tips On How To Ask For An Introduction

Having survived as a founder in the tech startup world for a decade, I’ve met lots of fellow “industry folk.” Being a dutiful founder, I’ve connected with most of them on LinkedIn. As a result, while I’m by no means a tech industry goliath, on LinkedIn I show up as a second degree connection to […]

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Quora: What Makes A Professor’s Lecture Boring?

I write lots of Quora answers. Sometimes, when I particularly enjoy on a question/answer combo, I’ll share it here, too. If you like it, be sure to check out my other Quora answers. Upvotes welcome! Quora Question: What makes a professor’s lecture boring? That’s an easy question to answer: Lack of saber toothed tigers. While you probably don’t […]

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Instagram

  • My @dukeinnovation capstone students at @adwerxre learning about #sales, #bizdev, and #closing from one of the best: @cleithe #entrepreneur #hustle #innovation #fieldtrip
  • Kirsten Hamstra, global head of social media @sassoftware, talking about corporate #socialmarketing strategies with my @dukeinnovation class: "A lot of brands think social only belongs in the marketing department, but the companies that are really benefiting from social are the ones that understand how it can help across an organization -- #HR, #recruiting, #R&D, #sales... everything."
  • A mini-reunion of the dorm formerly-known-as-Aycock, 2001. Who wins the award for least-receded hairline? #bluedevils #tildeathdouspartin
  • A little @dukeuniversity alumni love from @natedevil and @raleighsparty's wedding. #truelove #tildeathdouspartin #mawwage
  • Pretty much how I feel after a 7 meeting day. #entrepreneurship #hustling #sales #closing #wheatenterrier #furbaby #exhausted
  • Suggested caption: "I took Dr. Dinin's #learningtofail class and all I got was this stupid power strip." Watch My Story to see what other worthless things my students bartered for during today's failure challenge #entrepreneurship #tradingup #paperclips  #powerstrips
  • Teaching my little girl to #dreambig 🐻😆
  • For some reason, a discussion about the risks of using #socialmedia for professional development while hanging out with @fhi_duke's PhD Lab students seemed like a delightfully ironic time to snap a #selfie. #socialmediamarketing #immature
  • In today's #learningtofail class, we answered the age old question: What happens when 24 @dukeuniversity students go Trick-Or-Treating around campus for one hour on the day before #halloween? See My Story for the answer. Spoiler alert: it ends with almost 5,000 pieces of #candy 🍭 #entrepreneur #trickortreat #sugarhigh
  • When life gives you lemons, throw them away, go buy a 48oz tomahawk ribeye, and grill it up! #steak #sousvide #cholesterol #moo
  • #pumpkincarving with the @dukeinnovation education team. #entrepreneur #teambuilding #halloween #sharpthings
  • Hosted my first dorm dinner tonight. Ate some #chicken and talked #entrepreneurship with the kids from Brownstone. Tried to convince them to stop worrying about which major is going to get them a job and start taking classes they enjoy. After all, as the kids like to say... #yolo 🤣

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