My journey to Harvard Law School began in 2017. That year, I had the honor of being accepted to Harvard Law School through the Junior Deferral Program. I still remember where I was when I received the phone call from the admissions office telling me that I had been accepted. I went on to graduate from Harvard College in 2018 with a degree in bioengineering. I spent two years between undergrad and HLS working in cybersecurity at Nike HQ in Beaverton, Oregon. Now, I am a rising 2L at HLS and I am the CEO of a venture-backed startup that has raised millions of dollars to date.
My startup is called PredictionStrike and it is a sports stock market that allows users to buy and sell virtual “shares” of pro athletes. Those share prices then move based upon how athletes perform in games as well as other users buying and selling shares of those athletes. I founded PredictionStrike with my best friend, Brad, from back home. Brad and I came up with the idea in 2018 when we were talking about which companies to invest in and Brad said something like, “I just want to put my money in LeBron.” Ever since then, we have been focused on bringing that vision to life. What would a stock market look like where you could invest your money in LeBron James, or any other pro athlete?
People commonly ask why I chose to matriculate start my law school journey last year given I was already working on PredictionStrike. In short, I knew spending time at HLS would make me a better entrepreneur and a better leader. If you ask students or faculty about transitioning into business from HLS, they’ll tell you that the only school to produce more Fortune 500 CEOs than Harvard Law School is Harvard Business School. Now that I’m here, I see why. Harvard Law School offers students the opportunity to explore whatever they are interested in, even if that interest is outside of a traditional legal career. Between the courses, faculty, and resources offered at HLS, access to the resources of Harvard University as a whole, and the programming offered at the iLab, Harvard provides countless resources for anything that a student could want to do, including starting a company.
That being said, running and building a company while completing 1L certainly was not without its challenges. Jumping into 1L, especially in a remote environment, was a test in of itself. Managing a company on top of 1L required dedicated time management, a lot of late nights, and a lot of early mornings. Looking back on it, I can’t imagine doing one without the other. Most importantly, I don’t believe PredictionStrike would be nearly as successful as it has been without the lessons I’ve learned at HLS.
This summer I am working on making PredictionStrike a better platform and getting ready for the start of NFL season. I am excited to return to campus in the fall to continue growing PredictionStrike, learning from faculty and peers, and helping other entrepreneurs at Harvard however I can.
Deven Hurt is a rising 2L at Harvard Law School and CEO of PredictionStrike.