Published Tuesday, December 7th, 2021
Thirteen WSC students in the Growing Together Career Scholars Program and Collegiate Entrepreneurs' Organization attended the 38th annual conference and pitch competition this fall.
Wayne State College students attended the Collegiate Entrepreneurs’ Organization’s 38th annual Global Conference and Pitch Competition this fall in Tampa, Fla., which consisted of motivational and inspirational keynote presenters representing subject matter experts, networking and mentorship opportunities, chapter awards, and a pitch competition consisting of a $15,000 prize pool. Networking with other chapter leaders, established entrepreneurs, exhibitors, investors, start-up ventures, and more provided students with takeaways and real-world examples of how to best serve and grow chapter and student entrepreneurial interests.
Wayne State College recently created a new CEO (Collegiate Entrepreneurs’ Organization) Chapter for students enrolled in the Growing Together Career Scholars Program. The purpose of CEO is to support and inspire the growth and development of entrepreneurial-minded students through business creation, network development, and innovation opportunities.
The students were accompanied to Tampa by Dr. Trisha Kolterman, CEO faculty advisor and assistant professor of business, and Dr. Michael Keibler, Executive Director of Cooperative Education and Industry Liaison.
Kolterman said the conference provided valuable inspiration to the CEO students who attended, opening them up to a networking aspect of the business world and learning outside the classroom. The CEO competition is a valuable component to the goals of the Career Scholarship Program, which include fostering business-minded professionals and building Nebraska’s workforce and economy.
"Students acquire knowledge in the classroom. Students achieve wisdom through experiences,” Kolterman said. “The CEO Conference in Tampa opened the world to 13 Wayne State College students to connect with fellow entrepreneurs, to become inspired by successful multi-millionaires, and to make memories that will last a lifetime. The students returned from the trip energized and excited, ready to take the CEO Chapter to a higher level of excellence. The group is planning new fundraising events for 2022 and using the wisdom gained at the conference to create successful pitches to compete at the Global CEO Conference in Chicago in October 2022.”
Wayne State students who attended the conference shared how they benefitted from the experience.
“Tampa was an amazing trip that brought me out of my comfort zone,” said Jaegher Ogden of Atkinson, who is majoring in business administration / management. “This trip taught me so much about myself along with leadership and communication skills. I met a lot of new people on this trip and got to notice many different cultures from around the United States. I can't wait to use what I learned to further my career!”
“Being able to attend the CEO Global Conference in Tampa was an opportunity of a lifetime,” said Mady Cech of Clarkson, also majoring in business administration / management. “It taught us all so many valuable life lessons about how to reach our best potential in our future endeavors. This experience has made a huge impact on our chapter by giving us the tools we need to become the best possible entrepreneurs. All the tips and tricks we learned will be put to good use as we get ready for the global pitch competition. I personally cannot wait to see what my peers and I come up with for next year!”
CEO supports students at 250 universities, focusing on the development of any student that seeks to be a founder. This is the WSC’s chapter’s first event with their newly elected cabinet members, who will help move the chapter forward and welcome new career scholars this year. Students were able to attend the conference thanks to generous donations from WSC partners and alumni. The chapter is already planning on attending next year's conference in Chicago and hope to submit a presentation in the pitch competition.
The students from Wayne State that attended the conference were all sophomores and included Noah Burwell of David City, majoring in computer science; Mady Cech of Clarkson, majoring in business administration / management; Ty Erwin of Laurel, majoring in business administration / finance; Abigail Gardner of Chadron, majoring in business administration / accounting; Aubree Howell of Omaha, majoring in business administration / marketing; Brogan Jones of Allen, majoring in business administration / agri-business; Zoey Kreikemeier of West Point, majoring in business administration / marketing; Delaney Meyer of Lincoln, majoring in mass communication / electronic media; Jaegher Ogden of Atkinson, majoring in business administration / management; Austin Pierce of Brainard, majoring in business administration / management; Conor Ramold of Lincoln, majoring in business administration / management; Summer Schroeder of Clearwater, majoring in business administration / finance; and Jarvis Smith of Harvard, majoring in business administration / agri-business.