Bellevue University will introduce its new Center for Entrepreneurship and Market Capitalism on Thursday with a noon “lunch and learn” featuring keynote speaker Jack DeBoer, founder of the Residence Inn franchise and other extended-stay hotel chains.
The center, located on the main campus in Bellevue, is intended to serve entrepreneurs from the greater metropolitan area and beyond.
“The university is taking a more practical approach, supporting entrepreneurship with direct intervention, using our full range of university and networked resources to develop entrepreneurs and their enterprises,” said university President Mary B. Hawkins.
She added that she expects lessons learned from the center’s mentoring experiences to be incorporated into all of the university’s business, fine arts and technology programs.
In addition to mentoring and networking opportunities, the center will offer an entrepreneurship boot camp and connections to potential investors.
The center will challenge participants to justify, stabilize and act on their ideas, said Rod Hewlett, dean of the College of Business.
“This is not about working miracles,” he said. “The center is here to help potential entrepreneurs think through their ideas and take stock of their business plans. Assistance comes from real entrepreneurs who have had to make payroll and understand the entire entrepreneurial process.”
The public is invited to the DeBoer address in the Administrative Services Building on Bellevue University’s main campus at 1000 Galvin Road South. Register at www.bellevue.edu/cemc.