Entrepreneurship Club: A year in development

Although Entrepreneurship Club has its roots in the economics department, students from any discipline are welcome to participate. Chartered last spring, the group supports student entrepreneurial efforts and hopes to expose more students to the value of entrepreneurship.

According to board member Brian Utz ’16, the club is supplementing the administration’s push for entrepreneurship through sponsorship of alumni speakers, trips to entrepreneurial events in the Twin Cities and weekly meetings.

This year, Entrepreneurship Club has invited several alumni speakers with entrepreneurial experience to campus. In February, club members visited the Startup Venture Loft in Minneapolis, which offers guidance and inexpensive office space for new companies. Students met with the Loft’s founders and discussed the diverse applications of entrepreneurship.

At meetings, Entrepreneurship Club focuses on understanding entrepreneurial values and developing current student projects. Topics at meetings range from mobile app marketing to social entrepreneurship of the TOMS shoe company. At a “pitch day,” students — non-members welcome — present their business ideas and receive feedback from the group.

Recently, board members have focused on attracting a wider audience.

“There’s an assumption that the club is for econ majors. It’s not econ that makes you an entrepreneur, but how you can play around with different ideas and see how things can be improved,” said board member Qinxi Wang ’18.

According to Wang, entrepreneurship combines creativity, vision and personal skills — not just business experience.

Board member Kap Mueller ’15 said, “[Entrepreneurship] is growing a lot right now, and it’s not a very diverse community. There are a lot of different perspectives that are not at all represented in the field right now, so Macalester is a great place to add those.” He added, “It’s great to get more students involved. That’s what the group and the campus will benefit the most from.”

Entrepreneurship Club is involved in the Macathon event, has ties to the CDC and alumni and has a new collaboration with the economic department’s Introduction to Entrepreneurship class in progress. Entrepreneurship Club also promotes Mac Startups, a program that helps students jumpstart their entrepreneurial endeavors. Mac Startups is planned again for this coming summer; interested students should contact Zach Willert ’16 or Jonah Kaplan ’16, via email, Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/macstartups) or Twitter (@macstartups).

Entrepreneurship Club meetings, open to all creative problem-solvers, are held Thursdays at 8 p.m. in Janet Wallace Arts Commons 102.