Giving entrepreneurs a start

By AACC 21st Century Center Staff

The Start Me Up Challenge at one community college gives aspiring entrepreneurs an opportunity to get their ideas off the ground.

Bucks County Community College (BCCC) in Pennsylvania has been incubating ideas and launching careers for more than 50 years. The new Start Me Up Challenge continues this trend. The competition gives aspiring entrepreneurs in Bucks County a chance to receive funding assistance and professional mentoring for an idea, concept or business.

“Similar to the TV show Shark Tank, venture capitalists from Bucks County will invest their own time, money and resources in their favorite concepts,” said Tracy Timby, dean of business studies, in a release.

The investors will be listen to pitches and negotiate investment funds and mentoring. Up to $100,000 will be available to the selected concepts.
“The college is very excited about the Start Me Up challenge,” BCCC President Stephanie Shanblatt said. “It builds upon our efforts to infuse an entrepreneurial mindset throughout the college that provides a strong foundation for student success.”

The final, in-person part of the competition will take place at BCCC on April 27.

The challenge is just one way the BCCC Business Studies Department is working to increase its educational outreach to those who’d like to start their own business. The college runs an Introduction to Entrepreneurship three-credit course, offers networking opportunities for students and local business leaders, and has a dedicated “entrepreneur space” lab designed to stimulate collaboration and creativity. BCCC also launched a Virtual Incubator Network, an online collaboration space connecting experienced entrepreneurs, faculty, alumni, and community mentors.

How does your college help entrepreneurs? Sound off at LinkedIn.

AACC 21st Century Center Staff

is a contributor to the 21st-Century Center.