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Ferris Set to Host Global Entrepreneurship Week Beginning Nov. 14


An internationally-celebrated week for self starters and innovators to unleash their desires, Global Entrepreneurship Week is coming to Ferris State University beginning Monday, Nov. 14 and running through Friday, Nov. 18.

Ferris’ Entrepreneurial Institute aims to provide a diverse range of opportunities for university students and others to learn more about and engage in entrepreneurial practices through GEW. Among the goals for event organizers is to celebrate and inspire potential entrepreneurs to become among the less than one percent of individuals who will engage in entrepreneurship. To help unlock that interest, the Entrepreneurial Institute has planned a series of events, in conjunction with GEW, to encourage campus and community members to become active participants.

“Global Entrepreneurship Week offers a unique opportunity for Ferris State University to introduce its new Entrepreneurship Institute with an international perspective,” said Susan K. Jones, a professor of Marketing at Ferris. “Our local events – featuring disglobal 2tinguished speakers Keith Brophy, Mike Suman and Mike Price – will provide inspiration to Ferris students, faculty, staff and friends. I can’t wait for the week to begin.”

The 2011 week’s theme is “empowerment” as GEW’s mission is to help students and anyone else who is interested find the inspiration to become an entrepreneur.

On Monday, Nov. 14, the featured presentation is “Launching your Invention” by Ferris alumnus Michael Suman, owner of Product and Market Development L.L.C. beginning at 5 p.m. in IRC 120. His presentation focuses on the top five things that individual inventors can improve when launching their idea from dream to reality and the top five things that corporations can improve when growth teams are moving a new idea through the company.

On Tuesday, Nov. 15, “The Secret Energies of Entrepreneurial Empowerment” will be the topic of Keith Brophy, the CEO of IdeoMed, in IRC 120 beginning at 11 a.m. Brophy’s presentation focuses on how to master melding creative, high and positive energies and harness the inevitable negative energy through the evolution of business.

On Wednesday, Nov. 16, the pitch and video competitions take place for a chance to win $500 for first place. This will be held in IRC 120 from 6 to 8 p.m. Those who are interested can check the GEW website for complete prize details.

On Thursday, Nov. 17, the “Entrepreneurial Empowerment Exemplified: The Creation of Mercantile Bank of Michigan” is the featured event in Grand Rapids at Mercantile Bank located at 310 Leonard Street NW. The evening features a meet-and-greet session from 5:30 to 6 p.m. followed by a presentation with a question-and-answer session from 6 to 7 p.m. The presentation features Michael H. Price, chairman of the board and CEO of Mercantile Bank of Michigan. Price plans to share his story of the founding of Mercantile Bank and how the founders empowered themselves to become entrepreneurs.

“Michigan currently ranks 34th in the nation in terms of entrepreneurial activity. Considering that small firms have created 65 percent of new net jobs over the past 17 years, this ranking is distressing, especially when Michigan has the third-highest unemployment rate in the country,” said Kathleen Bolter, research analyst for the Entrepreneurial Institute. “GEW strives to help students find the strength to become entrepreneurs and embrace the benefits of calculated risk taking in terms of their economic futures.”

GEW organizers want to show people that there are options for those who are interested.

“The hope is for them to see that there are alternatives to the traditional 9-to-5 career and they themselves can be the individuals to bring these opportunities to life,” Bolter said.