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EMU Invites Michigan Entrepreneurs to Apply for the Executive Certificate in Entrepreneurship and $25,000 Venture Challenge to Launch Their Start-up

Crain’s Detroit Business
Nov. 8, 2021
Eastern Michigan University

The Center for Entrepreneurship at Eastern Michigan University is launching a new program, supported by university alumni and community partners, to help aspiring entrepreneurs take their ideas to the market.

The Executive Certificate in Entrepreneurship is an eight-week in-person and online hybrid program that offers business instruction, professional coaching, mentorship, and networking. It also offers the opportunity for participants to pitch their startup ideas to Michigan pre-seed investors for the chance to win a $25,000 business expense fund.

“Entrepreneurship is challenging, especially at the very early stage,” said Sanjib Chowdhury, director of EMU Center for Entrepreneurship. “We are thrilled to be able to develop this program for passionate entrepreneurs and help them move their ideas forward.”

Also interacting with the participants will be Chris Kaufman, co-founder and chief creative officer with StockX. “As an entrepreneur and EMU grad I understand the impact a program like this will have. I am looking forward to working with the participants and helping them develop their ideas. I am also very glad to be part of the team at the EMU Center for Entrepreneurship that is committed to helping our community and Southeast Michigan.”

The Executive Certificate in Entrepreneurship will feature a unique mix of exposure to academics, industry experts, mentors and professional coaches. The program will cover topics including:

  • Developing and evaluating startup ideas and business concepts
  • Discovery and acquisition of customers
  • Forming a company and networking
  • Financial planning and fundraising

The in-person portion of the program meets for eight half-day Saturdays. Each class includes a small cohort of up to 20 participants. The commitment amounts to about six hours per week when accounting for in-person and online instruction.

The Center for Entrepreneurship will award a $25,000 business expense venture fund during the eight-week program. Leading Michigan-based pre-seed fund investors will serve as judges for this Venture Challenge.

“We are very grateful for the generous contribution of a private donor for the award money and we will not require any financial or business interest in lieu of this funding,” Chowdhury said. “This program will bring together some of the best minds, offering a learning experience that entrepreneurs can instantly apply to their businesses in the real world.”

The total cost for the program is $1500, with $500 due upon enrollment. Most selected applicants will receive a full or partial ($1000) scholarship. After successful completion of the program, the $500 deposit will be refunded to full scholarship recipients.

The application deadline for the initial program is Nov. 22, 2021. For more information and to apply, visit the Executive Certificate in Entrepreneurship program website.

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