Entrepreneurship Resource Nights: Making an Entrepreneur

Resource Nights (ENTRE 440/540 Business Plan Practicum), offered throughout winter quarter by the Buerk Center for Entrepreneurship, bring in experts from the local entrepreneurial community to teach various aspects of creating a startup venture, from idea generation to legal issues to raising capital. Each week you can read a recap of the previous Entrepreneurship Resource Night. This week, the Buerk Center for Entrepreneurship’s Amy Sallin recaps a class featuring the lively CEO of Livible, Terry Drayton. If you have questions about the lecture series, or any of the Buerk Center’s student competitions, email Amy at [email protected].

Greetings! The Buerk Center for Entrepreneurship’s competition season has begun, which means it’s time for my weekly post to help students prepare to enter one or more of the upcoming challenges.


Are you entre-curious but not sure how to begin? Have you always dreamed of creating a company? Do you already have a startup and want to take it to the next level? Students across campus are enrolled in the Business Plan Practicum (aka Resource Nights)—but the community is also invited to drop-in and learn first-hand from local entrepreneurs the essentials of business planning and what it really takes to get a company off the ground! The ten sessions include topics such as: From idea to product; assessing risk; business models and financials; legal issues; crafting and giving a great pitch.

Resource Nights are each Tuesday from January 9 to March 6 from 6 to 7:50 p.m. in PACCAR Hall 192 (Shansby Auditorium). Can’t make it in person? Lectures will be recorded and the links posted to our website weekly. View the Resource Night schedule for links and complete listing of topics and guest speakers.


We had a fun first session of the 2018 BPP. Instructor John Zagula (founder, Ignition Capital) introduced the class with a lively overview (and cookies!) of entrepreneurship and topics to be covered throughout the quarter.

Terry Drayton, founder of Livible, Inc., followed up John’s intro with a passionate talk of his own about the realities of life as an entrepreneur. As a serial entrepreneur (he’s founded and managed nine companies, including HomeGrocer.com), Terry has a wealth of insight to share about experiencing the highest highs and lowest lows when you have the entrepreneurial DNA. Missed the session last week? The video is posted to the Resource Nights website.

In addition, I did my best to entice students to enter one (or more!) of the Buerk Center’s 2018 competitions—the Hollomon Health Innovation Challenge (HIC), the Alaska Airlines Environmental Innovation Challenge (EIC), or the UW Business Plan Competition (BPC).

Yes, entering a competition takes time and work, but the rewards are worth it (or so I’m told by past students!).

Taking part in a competition is a great way to make some real progress on your idea or vision (or perhaps a Capstone project?) in a low-risk environment. You’ll gain visibility and receive feedback from the experienced entrepreneurial community and start to build your network. And yes, there is prize money! Did I mention that we’ve awarded over $2.5 million in prize money since 1998?!


Your Inspiration: From great ideas to company vision and purpose, with speaker Steven Hooper, co-founder of Kigo Kitchen. Instructor John Zagula will talk about the “ABCs” of company vision, identifying key trends, and filling a gap. This session will also feature a panel of former Business Plan Competition participants:

· Susan Tai, Homemeal Club (BPC 2017)

· Richard Lee, EpiForAll (HIC, BPC, Accelerator 2017)

· Logan Jacobs, Tournitek (HIC, BPC, Accelerator 2017)

· Emily Willard, Engage Biotech (HIC, BPC, Accelerator 2016)



Networking Night for Team Formation

Thursday, January 18 from 7 to 8:30 pm
Dempsey Hall, Anthony’s Executive Forum (3rd floor)
Students from programs and majors across campus are invited to our final networking event before the HIC, EIC and BPC get going. Join the Buerk Center and SEBA January 18 at 7:00 pm. If you’re a student putting together a team for one of the competitions or a student who would like to join a team (or if you’d just like to learn more!), take this opportunity to meet the participants and winners of SEBA’s Science and Technology Showcase (taking place just before the networking gets going) for a chance to meet potential teammates.

There will be plenty of food and beverages—bring your ID if you’re over 21. Don’t miss the opportunity, and the fun! RSVP now for the Networking Night. (Note: This event is for college/university student use only.)


Don’t forget to check out the Student Entrepreneur Team Building site. Register an account as a team looking for members, or an individual with skills searching for a good team to join. (Note: This site is for college/university student use only.) Once you’ve set up a profile, check out the Showcase page to search for a team to join or team members.

MENTOR CONNECT (via website)

Need some quick advice about intellectual property, financial projections, or how to divide equity between co-founders? The Buerk Center’s MentorConnect site is a great way to connect with a professional via email for advice, questions, and feedback. The site requires a UW login, so if you’re a student from another college or university contact me for a guest login.

Please note that MentorConnect is available to students only!


This series of panel events is aimed at students entering the Hollomon Health Innovation Challenge, Alaska Airlines Environmental Innovation Challenge, and/or the UW Business Plan Competition. The perspective and knowledge gained will be valuable as teams prepare their 5-7 page business summaries—which are required to enter the Buerk Center competitions.

Regulatory Requirements and Clinical Study Planning for Life Science Technologies
Wednesday, January 17, noon to 1:30 pm, HUB 250

Regulatory Requirements for Environmental Technologies
Wednesday, January 17, noon to 1:30 pm, HUB 214

Intellectual Property & Legal Issues
Wednesday, January 24, noon to 1:30 pm, HUB 250

Business Models and Financial Projections
Wednesday, January 31, noon to 1:30 pm, HUB 250


Health Innovation Challenge: Terri Butler
Environmental Innovation Challenge: Lauren Brohawn
Business Plan Competition: Amy Sallin
BPC MBA student co-chairs: Emma Hohenstein & John Montgomery

Have a great 2018!

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