What does “entrepreneurship” mean to you?

Washington & Lee Alumni share their thoughts on entrepreneurs and entrepreneurship.


What does Entrepreneurship mean to you? from Jeff Shay on Vimeo.

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Recent Graduate Working For Hot New Startup!

One of our past business plan competitors, Nathaniel Reichel, is working at a startup this coming year. Nate, Class of 2014, accepted a job with Virtual U.

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Virtual U is a technology startup that is able to get biometric data like height, weight, BMI, resting heart rate as well as circumferences of any part of the body all in a 10 second scan with a margin error of .5%. Virtual U will use there scans to eventually enter the health industry for body fat and other relevant scans, fashion industry for clothes fittings, and the medical industry for use at detecting skin cancer. Their new technology allows people to be able to see themselves in 3D on their mobile device in high accuracy through the VFit scans.

Please vote for Virtual U on Tech Coctail’s poll:http://tech.co/dcs-hottest-showcasing-startup-poll-2-2014-05. Virtual U is in a competition for the best new startup in DC and we would love to show our W&L support! You can vote each day.

Nate is excited to enter the world of entrepreneurship and to work in App Development at the Blacksburg start up. He is already planning on coming back to W&L in September for the Entrepreneurship Summit!

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iStartup Social Entrepreneurship

The members of Venture Club, Shepard Poverty Program, Generals Development and Community Financial Freedom are hosting a special colloquium on social entrepreneurship this Alumni Weekend. The event, on Friday May 2nd, will feature a panelist of experts discussing current trends in space and challenges facing socially oriented ventures. Following the panel discussion, students will be pitching their own social venture ideas to a panel of judges with the possibility to win funding and consulting services. A Q&A session with the panelists and students participants will follow the pitch competition. We are excited to be co-hosting such an exciting event!

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Congratulations to Matthew Kordonowy!

We are so proud and excited that VC member Matthew Kordonowy has secured a grant for $15,000 from Colgate towards his company, Vern Clothing!

Want to find out more about Vern Clothing?

Founded by a couple of college students with a passion for travel, volunteerism, and entrepreneurship, Vern Clothing’s mission is to help disadvantaged artisans and weavers in remote locations earn fair wages for their handcrafted items.  We do this this by working directly with weaving cooperatives and artisan groups in the Guatemalan highlands to produce items for American shoppers.

The artisans and weavers that we work with don’t have access to markets in Europe and the United States. They are forced to sell their work on the street or market to the few tourists that wander by. It is our mission to connect these artisans with the world so that they can finally get fair wages and achieve a better standard of living.

Ten percent of our profits are sent back to the communities that we purchase our products from. Currently, we support an organization that provide educational opportunities in the Guatemalan highlands. As we expand our business, we will continue to add organizations. 

Congratulations to Matthew!

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W&L Entrepreneurship Summit 2013 a BIG SUCCESS!

The second annual Entrepreneurship Summit was a BIG SUCCESS for alumni entrepreneurs and students.  The event attracted more than 60 alumni and over 200 students. Read more about the Summit.

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MAJOR NEWS: J. Lawrence Connolly Center for Entrepreneurship

This is the big news that we have been waiting to share with everyone.  Washington and Lee University announces that its Entrepreneurship Program has been named the J. Lawrence Connolly Center for Entrepreneurship, thanks to a $2.5 million gift from Leigh and Larry Connolly, of Atlanta. To read more, click here to see the official announcement. We are so excited about the opportunities that Leigh and Larry’s gift will create for our program.

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Milestones and more…

Milestones are important for any entrepreneurial venture.  Since I consider the Entrepreneurship Program at W&L our own startup, I’d like to share a few milestones.  Launching just a few years ago, today our LinkedIn.com group reached 700 members. I recall W&L administrators and faculty telling me when I interviewed for the Johnson Chair that they believed there was a large, untapped group of alumni entrepreneurs who would probably welcome the opportunity to engage with a high quality entrepreneurship program if we built it. Although I knew they were “talking up” the potential for the program, I believed they were correct.  After all, how could a truly exceptional liberal arts school with an equally high quality commerce school not produce great entrepreneurs? As I enter my fifth year at W&L, I could not be happier with the alumni, student, faculty, and administrator support that we’ve received as we continue to build a world-class entrepreneurship program.

Another milestone reached this week is that we have 40 alumni registered for our October 18-19 Entrepreneurship Summit. We’ve already surpassed last year’s registrations and I know we’ll get many more to register in the coming weeks. Please be sure to check out the schedule and sign up soon.

Teaser: By the way…check out the W&L websites for something big to be announced next week…probably Thursday or Friday.  Very exciting!!!

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