Success Story

Global Entrepreneurship Week Penn State to connect innovators, entrepreneurs

Open to community and Penn State entrepreneurs and innovators, Global Entrepreneurship Week (GEW) Penn State is set for Nov. 8-12. Presented by the Penn State Small Business Development Center (SBDC), GEW Penn State connects community members and aspiring entrepreneurs with Penn State’s vibrant ecosystem of investors, researchers, and startup champions.

GEW Penn State will have in-person, virtual, and hybrid events held at University Park as well as across Penn State campuses. No Penn State affiliation is required to attend, and most events are no cost and open to the public.

“GEW Penn State provides robust tools and resources to help entrepreneurs explore, network, and learn,” GEW Event Coordinator Elizabeth Fegert said. “Whether you’re an experienced or aspiring entrepreneur, there are a wide variety of opportunities to learn more about entrepreneurial topics such as policy, ecosystems, diversity and inclusion, and more.”

Featured GEW Penn State events include:

Entrepreneurial Networking Event

Monday, Nov. 8, 5:30-7:30 p.m.

In-Person Event

Taking place at the brand-new Penn State Innovation Hub, Centre Region Entrepreneur Network (CREN) and Women’s Networking Group of State College (WiNGs) will host this networking event that is open to all student and community entrepreneurs. Appetizers will be served. Attendees are encouraged to RSVP ahead of time.

Customer Discovery: Understanding what Consumers Really Want

Tuesday, Nov. 9, 9-10 a.m.

In-Person Event

In partnership with and taking place at Happy Valley LaunchBox powered by PNC Bank, this event will introduce entrepreneurs to the concept of customer discovery and a lean business strategy that helps businesses identify customer needs, develop products that meet those needs, and avoid risk. Presenters include Happy Valley LaunchBox Chief Amplifier Lee Erickson and Penn State SBDC Business Consultant Elizabeth Hay. Registration is not required.

The First Steps to Small Business Success

Tuesday, Nov. 9, 3:30-5 p.m.

Hybrid Event

Led by Penn State SBDC Business Consultant Tom Keiffer and hosted in partnership with Pennsylvania College of Technology, this event will share key aspects of starting a business to help aspiring entrepreneurs determine if they are ready and equipped to launch their own venture. This event will take place at the Pennsylvania College of Technology and be streamed online. Registration is not required.

Leveraging Entrepreneurial Experience to Maximize Professional Success

Wednesday, Nov. 10, Noon-1 p.m.

Hybrid Event

Hosted in partnership with Penn State Career Services at the Penn State Innovation Hub and streamed online, this panel will showcase how entrepreneurial experience can further professional success. Attendees will learn effective ways to market their own entrepreneurial experience when seeking an internship, job, or professional opportunity. Registration is not required.

“During the event, entrepreneurs of all stages in their professional careers will learn how they can market their entrepreneurial experience and skills to drive personal and career success,” said Matt Stein, program coordinator for Penn State Career Services.

Entrepreneurship: Local to Global

Wednesday, Nov. 10, 2-3:30 p.m.

Virtual Event

Presented by Penn State Global, this event will feature a diverse group of panelists from Penn State and Lehigh University who will discuss innovative aspects of entrepreneurship educational program development in a global context. Speakers will include Esther Obonyo, director of the Global Building Network, Mark Gagnon, associate teaching professor of Agribusiness and director of the Food and Bio-innovation Entrepreneurship Minor in the College of Agricultural Sciences, and Khanjan Mehta, vice provost for creative inquiry and director of the Mountaintop Initiative at Lehigh University.

“Global Entrepreneurship Week is a terrific platform that allows Penn State Global to introduce our audience, including international students and scholars, to helpful programs and resources,” Global Collaborations Manager Vlad Likholetov said. “Our panel, Entrepreneurship: Local to Global, will highlight the best practices and valuable skills that can lead to success, whether that’s starting a company or advancing forward into the business world.”

Additional Programming

Other events designed to inspire and showcase successful entrepreneurs include Winter Market at the Rivet, Use YouTube to Grow Your Business, and From Penn State to President – Alumni Diversity Entrepreneurship.

Across 180 countries, GEW inspires roughly 10 million participants each year to explore their potential while fostering connections and increasing collaboration within their ecosystems to empower entrepreneurs and strengthen communities.

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

About Invent 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.

GEW Penn State partners with Invent Penn State to help further its mission of economic development, student career success, and job creation. It aligns with President Eric Barron’s imperative to create unique opportunities for student engagement, building upon classroom learning with real-world interactions within and outside of the University community.

About the Penn State SBDC

Funding support and resources are provided through a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration; by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania through the Department of Community & Economic Development; and in part through support from Penn State and with assistance from Lock Haven University. All services are extended to the public on a nondiscriminatory basis. SBDC services are not available to individuals or entities that have been debarred or suspended by the federal government.

SBDCs are hosted by leading universities, colleges, state economic development agencies and private partners, and funded in part by the United States Congress through a partnership with the U.S. Small Business Administration. There are nearly 1,000 local centers available to provide no-cost business consulting and low-cost training to new and existing businesses. The Penn State SBDC services Centre, Clinton, Lycoming, and Mifflin counties in central Pennsylvania.