Success Story

Global Entrepreneurship Week Penn State Offers Virtual Community Events Nov 16 – 20

Community entrepreneurs and Penn State student innovators are invited to explore their potential by virtually connecting with collaborators, mentors and leaders during Global Entrepreneurship Week Penn State, presented by the Penn State Small Business Development Center, Nov. 16-20, with additional events throughout the month.

Global Entrepreneurship Week is a weeklong international initiative that reaches millions of people through local, national and global events and activities – framed by key global themes that shine a spotlight on leading topics in entrepreneurship. The 2020 global themes are education, ecosystem, inclusion, and policy. GEW Penn State virtual events will align with the global themes and celebrate the entrepreneurial spirit across University and commonwealth communities.

A few of the highlights during GEW Penn State will include:

Small Business Resilience: Thriving Through Change

Tuesday, November 17, 9 – 10 am, registration encouraged

During the COVID-19 pandemic, many small business owners need to be flexible and adaptable as they are forced to make quick changes to survive this challenging time. This panel discussion will highlight how diverse small businesses throughout Central PA are successfully pivoting during the pandemic to continue successful operations. Presented in partnership with the CBICC, Juniata River Valley Chamber, Clinton County Economic Partnership.

Opening the Door to Entrepreneurship

Thursday, November 19, Noon – 1 pm, registration encouraged

Do you have a passion or idea you’d like to explore as a potential career or side hustle? This interactive discussion featuring community leaders will share why Centre County is the perfect place to launch your dream. The event will feature an interactive virtual tour of innovation spaces, showcase how those organizations support local entrepreneurship, share stories of local entrepreneurs, and answer questions about how to break into entrepreneurship. Presented in partnership with New Leaf, Discovery Space, and 3 Dots.

Social Entrepreneurship Opportunity Fair

Monday, November 16, 5 – 8 pm, registration encouraged

Calling all Penn State students! Learn about internships, jobs, and service positions to help launch your career in social entrepreneurship. From benefit corporations to global service organizations, from large foundations to small rural startups, take the next step to a change-making career by connecting with representatives from global service organizations, foundations, and startups. Presented in partnership with The Algernon Sydney Sullivan Foundation.

Cultivating Entrepreneurialism through Global Partnerships

Tuesday, November 17, Noon – 1 pm, registration encouraged

Global initiatives have the power to unlock latent entrepreneurial potential by promoting synergies across groups of people with diverse backgrounds and complimentary skillsets, problem solving approaches and personal networks. Learn how to cultivate social impact-driven entrepreneurial cultures on a global scale through partnerships. Presented in partnership with the Penn State Alumni Association.

The Financial Ecosystem and Black Businesses and Entrepreneurs

Monday, November 16, Noon – 1 pm, registration encouraged

While small businesses represent a significant portion of the economy, there is mounting evidence that the playing field is not level for minority-owned businesses seeking access to capital. Learn about the research of Jerome Williams, Distinguished Professor and Fellow of The Center for Urban Entrepreneurship & Economic Development in the Rutgers Business School, and his colleagues who have spent 10 years mystery shopping banks to investigate lending practices and customer experience. Their results demonstrate that in almost every instance, minorities were treated more poorly than their white counterparts. To help minority business owners identify discriminatory practices, Professor Williams will present two frameworks to support the adoption of race-based criteria in evaluating bank performance, namely, Corporate Social Responsibility and Corporate Social Innovation. Presented in partnership with Smeal College of Business.

Additional programming

Other events designed to spark ideas in budding entrepreneurs include Intrapreneurship: Be All You Can Be,  Éxito de una startup: lecciones de los fundadores latinx (presented in Spanish), and Nonprofits, AI, and the Greater Good.

Additional events tailored for entrepreneurs in the community include Where to Find Financing to Start or Grow your Business, presented by the Penn State SBDC and SCORE Mentors; and Get Started Building your Business with Lean Startup, presented by the Harrisburg LaunchBox.

For a full schedule of events at all participating Penn State campuses, visit GEW Penn State online and follow GEW Penn State on social media at @gewpennstate.

Invent Penn State is a partner for Global Entrepreneurship Week Penn State. Invent Penn State blends entrepreneurship-focused academic programs, business startup training and incubation, funding for commercialization, and university/community/industry collaborations to facilitate the challenging process of turning research discoveries into valuable products and services that can benefit Pennsylvanians and humankind. Learn more at