A Culture of Innovation

New Entrepreneurship Center Opens at Southwestern
October 27, 2021

KEENE, TEX. – Today’s college students are always on the lookout for creative ways to find early financial freedom, and Southwestern Adventist University (SWAU) has created a life-size tool to help them on their way. 

The SWAU Innovation and Entrepreneurship Center launched at the start of this school year. This interdisciplinary hub caters to students of all areas of study who have ideas for opening a small business. The center will provide workshops, coaching, CV reviews, roundtable events with successful entrepreneurs, mentoring and more. Over 150 students participated in last year's pre-opening event, hosted by SWAU’s Enactus club. At the pitching competition, ten students pitched business plans for funding and $10,000 was given away.

“Many students are interested in entrepreneurship, yet they don’t know where to begin,” says Ana Patterson, SWAU president. “This initiative will provide a framework for students to gain the knowledge and skills necessary to pursue entrepreneurial ventures. By providing access to information, connections with community leaders and opportunities for funding, the program creates a bridge that allows for ideas to become reality.”

Ultimately, the center hopes to support not only students, but also staff, faculty, alumni and community members. “We want this center to be a special place for creative individuals to experiment and grow,” says Licci Zemleduch, professor of communication and business and founding director of the center. To support student entrepreneurs at SWAU, email StartUp@swau.edu.

By Becky St. Clair