woman leaning against a brick wall in a white jacket
woman leaning against a brick wall in a white jacket

Times of Entrepreneurship is telling stories that nobody else is, stories of change makers and entrepreneurs from Miami to Trinidad, Colorado, to a million-dollar company grown in Cape Girardeau, Missouri.

Part of our focus on entrepreneurship beyond Silicon Valley led us, at Times of E, to explore the future of entrepreneurship — which meant we looked, naturally, at university entrepreneurship programs. You don’t have to graduate from college to be a successful entrepreneur. But in an age of corporate power, a college network and strong dose of higher level critical thinking are important tools. Facebook was started in a dorm, of course; Reddit, Dell and Snapchat were also born at colleges. What kinds of companies are percolating at schools today?

We’ve been covering these student-led ventures for the past two years, in stories about startups working on mental healthlingerie for women with disabilitiesartificial limbs and many other ideas and services. We’ve also published the only independently researched list of Top University Entrepreneurship Competitions. It’s no surprise some of the up-and-coming competitions are at universities in the middle and south of the United States.

Our first event focuses on what’s happening at these programs. It’ll be virtual, on three afternoons from Jan. 26-28. You’ll hear from top-tier speakers like Stacey Vanek Smith of NPR to my co-author Seth Levine, to Dan Sachs of the University of Chicago’s Polsky Center – with more big names to come.

We’ll cover topics from the nuts-and-bolts, like how to make the case for entrepreneurship to your funders, to the more personal: Will your job be here in 10 years? Deconstructing Scott Galloway’s negative take on universities. We’ll also hear from students themselves, including in a panel on solving eco-depression through entrepreneurship.

And, the big news: Sponsored by YouNoodle, we’ll unveil this year’s list of Top University Entrepreneurship Competitions.

By attending or sponsoring a panel, you’ll also be supporting independent journalism that lifts the voice of black and brown founders, women, and people everywhere who don’t necessarily fit the mainstream media’s idea of what business ought to be.

Hope to see you there! Early bird pricing lasts until Jan. 5.

This story and others on New Builders Dispatch are made possible by a sponsorship from the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation. The Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation is a private, nonpartisan foundation that provides access to opportunities that help people achieve financial stability, upward mobility, and economic prosperity – regardless of race, gender, or geography. The Kansas City, Mo.-based foundation uses its grantmaking, research, programs, and initiatives to support the start and growth of new businesses, a more prepared workforce, and stronger communities. For more information, visit www.kauffman.org and connect with www.twitter.com/kauffmanfdn and www.facebook.com/kauffmanfdn.

A business journalist for 20 years, am the founder of Times of Entrepreneurship and the co-author of The New Builders.