KSU entrepreneurship program provides students real-world business opportunities

Morgan Galloway

What do you want to be when you grow up?

Students have been asked this question all their lives, and chances are the answer has changed more times than they can count. They have gone from police officer to bullfighter, bullfighter to astronaut and astronaut to doctor. Bottom line is they all want to make money and they all want to be successful.

“There’s something to be said about being successful,” said senior entrepreneurship major Collin DeMeritt. “Being successful is great. And then there’s something to be said on top of being successful for making the success happen from the ground up. On a professional and a personal level, you’ll never top that.”

The Center for Entrepreneurship and Business Innovation started at Kent State in 2006. The CEBI offers students majoring in entrepreneurship a place to collaborate with other students and experienced faculty and staff to discuss and bring to life potential student-run business ventures that will benefit Kent State.

“We want to attract students from all of the disciplines,” said Introduction to Entrepreneurship professor Brent Pfeiffer. “We want students to realize entrepreneurship affects everybody. A fashion student wants to open their own boutique — we have opportunities that can help with that.”

There are four student-run businesses in the Kent State community.

Laundry in a Flash offers students the option to drop their laundry off at locations on campus to be washed, folded and returned in a timely manner.

Flash Flix, located in Eastway Center, is an on-campus, low-cost DVD rental service available to students. The business gives students the convenience to walk a short distance to the movie store instead of driving or taking the bus to Family Video on Main Street.

The student-run businesses are not limited to campus.

The Main St. Snack Shoppe in the recently added Acorn Alley offers the community a place to stop in for a bite to eat, while Bookends Café, located in the Kent Free Library, offers public library goers the availability to grab a sandwich and a cup of coffee or juice as they browse for books.

As part of the program, students are required to conceptualize practical business endeavors. DeMeritt said more student-run businesses are in the works.

None of the student-run businesses would be available without passion.

“More than a good idea, more than money, they have to have passion,” Pfeiffer said.

Contact Morgan Galloway at [email protected].