It's Your Business: Ivy Tech launching startup entrepreneurship program at many campuses

·2 min read

There are some exciting things happening at Ivy Tech Community College as we kick off the new year for our students and the community.

Steve Bryant
Steve Bryant

We launched a new Regional Innovation and Startup Education Applied Entrepreneurship program in the fall last year with a cohort of 19 students at the Ivy Tech Bloomington campus. This new academic program started in 2020 at the South Bend and Indianapolis campuses and is slated for expansion to other campuses across the state in the coming year. Students work on business ideas at their pace, led by an experienced faculty member who took a startup to scale and sold the company over 10 years ago.

Ivy Tech RISE/ENTR students learn about ideation, lean startup tools, customer discovery and validation, pricing models, and operational issues important to their business formation and growth. Students then pitch their business ideas in a Demo Day format much like those at the Dimension Mill and other startup/accelerator programs in the region. We are eager to see how our inaugural cohort of students do in their pitch events later this semester.

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Additionally, the Ivy Tech system just announced the establishment of a new School of Entrepreneurship & Innovation. As you may know, entrepreneurial studies has been an academic program offered under business administration since its inception in 2011, when the Bloomington campus led the initiative to start an ENTR program. The college and the Indiana Commission for Higher Education approved this new school late last year. The school will be led by a new dean, Ronda Taylor from the Indianapolis campus, and have faculty and staff at Ivy Tech campus locations that offer the program.

This is further validation that Ivy Tech is committed to ensuring students have the tools to develop their skills in forming new ventures and creating their own career pathways, for the benefit of communities across Indiana.

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Our team at Ivy Tech Bloomington’s Gayle & Bill Cook Center for Entrepreneurship has played an active role in the startup of the program on our local campus. The Cook Center recently completed a strategic planning initiative and it is a top priority for the team to support students in the new RISE/ENTR program. We are motivated by the possibilities and coming economic benefits for the communities we serve.

To learn more about and/or get involved in the RISE/ENTR program, visit Contact us at the Cook Center by calling 812-330-6261 if we can help you with your business idea.

Steve Bryant is executive director of the Gayle & Bill Cook Center for Entrepreneurship at Ivy Tech Community College — Bloomington and regional director of the South Central Small Business Development Center.

This article originally appeared on The Herald-Times: Ivy Tech's regional startup entrepreneurship program expands

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