Entrepreneurs share strategies during Penn State Startup Week powered by PNC

Penn State Startup Week logo
Credit: Penn State

WYOMISSING, Pa. — Each spring, Penn State Startup Week powered by PNC brings together the best and brightest Penn State student and alumni entrepreneurs and innovators for a weeklong celebration of what happens when Penn State’s inspired doers put their ideas into action. 

As part of this year’s Startup Week, Penn State Berks will host a variety of events — including keynote speakers, workshops, networking and more — from March 21-26. All Startup Week events are virtual, unless otherwise noted, and are free and open to the public. Penn State Berks events are sponsored by the Flemming Creativity, Entrepreneurship and Economic Development (CEED) Center on campus and the Berks LaunchBox, located within the GoggleWorks Center for the Arts in downtown Reading.

— Creative Hustlin’
Sunday, March 21, 5-8 p.m., co-sponsored by the Flemming CEED Center
Click to join.

An immersive event, Creative Hustlin’ serves to better equip creatives for sustainable success by featuring expert speakers who will show them how to align their passions with business. The event will feature a live performance component that uses the transcendent power of music and performance to contrast the speaker sessions while driving home the importance of excellence and confidence. 

— Sustaining Pennsylvania’s Entrepreneurship Ecosystem: Fostering K-12 Innovators
Monday, March 22, 12-1:30 p.m., co-sponsored by the Flemming CEED Center
Participants must register in advance.

Participants will learn about K-12 entrepreneurship and innovation education, Penn State’s initiatives that foster youth entrepreneurship and leadership, and how to get involved. The 45-minute panel presentation will be followed by an opportunity for participants and presenters to meet up in Gather Town, a virtual environment, where they can continue the conversation.  


Startup Week-Innovation Design Workshop
Credit: Penn State


— Innovation Design Workshop
Monday, March 22, 6-7 p.m., sponsored by the Flemming CEED Center
Click to Join.

Participants will develop a minimum viable product and learn structured techniques for innovating a product or service and evaluating it for a free pre-prototype. Working alone or in a team, attendees will apply Idea Space techniques to improve the experience of online learning. Participants will have one minute to pitch their innovation, and the audience will vote for their favorite. Then, one of de Bono's Six Thinking Hats will be applied to suggest improvements to the audience's chosen design. Attendees will receive a takeaway worksheet that summarizes the innovation techniques. This workshop will be facilitated by Sarah Hartman-Caverly, Penn State Berks Thun Library reference and instruction librarian.

— Innovation and Intrapreneurship (I2) in the 21st Century
Tuesday, March 23, 7-8 p.m., sponsored by the Flemming CEED Center
Participants must register in advance.

Darrell Alston, owner and CEO of Bungee Brand, and Daniel E. Goldberg, founder of For Eyes and academic director of the business management program at Temple University’s Fox School of Business, will share their experiences and challenges. This presentation is part of the Flemming CEED Center Entrepreneurship Speaker Series.

— App Development Roundtable
Wednesday, March 24, 12:15-1:15 p.m., sponsored by Berks LaunchBox
Participants must register in advance.

This presentation is for anyone who has an idea to build an app, which can be an intimidating and expensive endeavor. Participants will learn important considerations for building a prototype and gain insights from entrepreneurs’ experiences. Panelists include Bala Peterson, senior staff engineer lead for HBOMAX and Warner Media and founder of CastandCrew.io; Donna DeMarco, co-founder of Viddler Inc. and computer science professor at Kutztown University; Terry McKim, creator, founder and chief innovation officer of Tippy; and Mark Viglione, Enigma Networkz founder.

— Flemming CEED Center Open House
Wednesday, March 24, 1-2:30 p.m., sponsored by the Flemming CEED Center
Click to Join

The Flemming Creativity, Entrepreneurship and Economic Development Center at Penn State provides many resources to help with entrepreneurial endeavors. Participants will learn how the CEED Center is engaging students from various programs. Mentoring programs through the Flemming CEED Center also will be discussed.

— 15th Forum of Businesswomen and Entrepreneurs, Foro de Mujeres Emprendedoras (presented in Spanish) 
Wednesday, March 24, 7-9 p.m., co-sponsored by Berks LaunchBox
Participants must register in advance.

This motivational business and networking event will be live streamed in Spanish. The event focuses on the promotion of the entrepreneurial spirit and business development of Latinx entrepreneurs and owners of micro-, small- and medium-sized companies nationally and internationally.

— 3D Printing Workshop
Thursday, March 25, 6-7 p.m., sponsored by the Flemming CEED Center
Click to Join

This 3D printing workshop will teach participants how to use 3D printers for prototyping their business idea, an important step when assessing and refining a product and obtaining more accurate market feedback. 3D printing is a fast and cost-effective way to create a prototype. Jake Cumens, 3D printing coordinator for the Penn State Berks entrepreneurship club, will introduce participants to the 3D printing industry, and the types of 3D printers and software used.  


Startup Week 2021-Spoon Edition
Credit: Penn State


— Introduction to the Makerspace – Spoon Edition
Thursday, March 25, 6-8:30 p.m., sponsored by Berks LaunchBox
This event will be held at the Berks LaunchBox. Participants must register for a 20-minute time slot in advance.

Tinkerers, hobbyists and small-business owners will get a quick overview of what can be done in a Makerspace and have an opportunity to participate in fun and engaging, hands-on projects. In this session, participants will learn how to engrave a spoon with a laser cutter. They also will learn how to prototype an idea to start a business or add to a current business.

— Beyond the Bottom Line: What’s a Social Enterprise?
Friday, March 26, 12:15-1:15 p.m., co-sponsored by the Berks LaunchBox
Participants must register in advance.

Many businesses exist not only to turn a profit, but to address a social or environmental issue. Participants will hear examples from local and international social enterprises. Panelists include Jennie Groff, co-owner and CEO of Stroopies Inc.; Sarah Payne, ASSETS impact consulting manager; and Adis Ozuna, Dominican Access general manager and vice president of the Iberoamerican Network for Accessible Tourism. 

— Entrepreneurship Webinar: Entrepreneurship Assistance Clinic
Friday, March 26, 12:15-1:15 p.m., co-sponsored by the Flemming CEED Center and the Entrepreneurship Club
Click to Join

This entrepreneurship webinar focuses on the Penn State Law Entrepreneurship Assistance Clinic. Participants will learn about how the clinic can assist student entrepreneurs with legal issues such as choice of entity, entity formation, founder and initial investor agreements, shareholder agreements, loan arrangements, certain intellectual property protection and more. This webinar will feature Vivian Etter, staff attorney, Penn State Law Entrepreneurship Assistance Clinic.  

About Penn State Startup Week powered by PNC

Penn State Startup Week powered by PNC is a University-wide event that takes place every spring and brings some of the leading minds in entrepreneurship and innovation to Penn State campuses across the commonwealth. By connecting students with innovative alumni and pioneers who are achieving success in a variety of disciplines — through startup initiatives of their own or with new ventures in already established organizations — Penn State Startup Week inspires students to go beyond what is expected of them and expand their minds to think more broadly in whatever career path they choose.