UA’s Entrepreneurship Week 2012 Offers Range of Programs
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — Entrepreneurship Week 2012 in Alabama will be observed Feb. 20-24, and the entrepreneurial forces at The University of Alabama have put together a comprehensive program.
This year’s observance will include an innovation workshop the afternoon prior to the awards banquet, in addition to a pitch competition for UA students, Entrepreneur of the Year in Awards in five categories and various speaker panels.
Allen Henry, clinical professor of management at The University of Alabama’s Culverhouse College of Commerce, and chief executive officer of Park Transfer and Storage Inc., of Tuscaloosa, is coordinating the UA observance.
“Alabama has one of the friendliest public policy environments for entrepreneurship, according to the Small Business and Entrepreneurship Council’s Small Business Survival Index 2011,” Henry said, noting that the state ranked sixth in the annual report.
“The University of Alabama entrepreneurship community wants to reinforce that ranking through a successful and informative observance of Entrepreneurship Week,” Henry said.
The activities will start Monday, Feb. 20 with a student concept business pitch competition. Winners of the competition will be recognized at the award ceremony Thursday, Feb. 23.
The business pitch competition is open to all UA students, and it will be a dual track event – a for-profit pitch category and a social entrepreneurship pitch category with different judges for each track.
Tuesday, Feb. 21 will be devoted to student entrepreneurship activities, among them a social entrepreneurship concept pitch via student-produced videos, the debut of an Entrepreneurship Week promotional video, and an evening panel about social entrepreneurship.
Wednesday, Feb. 22 and Thursday, Feb 23 will be devoted to activities aimed primarily at the business community.
On Wednesday morning, a breakfast for owners of local small businesses who would like to do business with The University of Alabama will be held in the North Recruiting Room of Bryant Denny Stadium. Managers from UA’s purchasing department will be on hand to answer questions and give advice. No fee will be charged, but pre-registration is required.
On Wednesday afternoon, a panel of speakers will discuss their experiences in starting a successful small business. The free event will be from 2-3:30 p.m. in the Lecture Room at the Child Development Research Center. Students and others from the UA community, as well as the public, will be invited. The scheduled speakers are Brittney Brown, Belladora LLC; Mick Wright, Game Day Tents LLC; and Whitney Hough, Applied Touring LLC.
Thursday, Feb. 23 will be devoted to entrepreneurial education that will include family business seminars, an innovation workshop, and a wine and cheese reception, followed by the awards ceremony and banquet.
The educational seminars will begin at 10 a.m. at the Bryant Conference Center and conclude at 3 p.m. and will include lunch. Topics include “Profitable Growth through Innovation” and “Successful Family Business Growth Cycles.” A fee of $199 will be charged for the workshop and will include a reception at 5:30 and the awards ceremony and banquet at 6:30.
The fee for the awards ceremony and banquet, if purchased separately, is $49.
The reception and the awards ceremony will be at the Bryant Conference Center. State Rep. John Merrill, a graduate of The University of Alabama, will be master of ceremonies. Merrill served as president of the UA Student Government Association, has worked at Randall Publishing Company, the Tuscaloosa Industrial Development Authority, the Chamber of Commerce of West Alabama and the Tuscaloosa County Board of Education.
The University of Alabama, a student-centered research university, is experiencing significant growth in both enrollment and academic quality. This growth, which is positively impacting the campus and the state's economy, is in keeping with UA's vision to be the university of choice for the best and brightest students. UA, the state's flagship university, is an academic community united in its commitment to enhancing the quality of life for all Alabamians.