Three Tips for Making the Most of Winter Break

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Winter break is quickly approaching, and while some students are looking forward to relaxing, many of our innovators and entrepreneurs are eager to stay involved. Here are three easy tips innovators and entrepreneurs can use to make their winter break a productive one.



Though classes and many University activities will be suspended for winter break, multiple innovation and entrepreneurship events are slated to take place throughout December across the state of Michigan. Here are a few events during winter break happening across the state, maybe even near you:

December 14th: Starting a Business Workshop
Who: Kathleen Bagley, SBDC Small Business Consultant
What: This workshop is intended for individuals in the beginning stages of starting a business, in need of accessing capital, or simply considering self-employment. Delivered in a workshop format, this introductory session helps aspiring entrepreneurs assess their abilities to lead and manage a company, as well as evaluate market and sales potential for their products/services.
When: 9:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.
Where: North Central Michigan College, Petoskey, MI

December 15th: Top 10 Communication and Marketing Secrets
Who: Phoenix Network — Advertising, marketing, and public relations specialists.
What: This 90 minute workshop will provide a variety of techniques and strategies for small business communications.
Where: Oak Business Center, Flint, MI
When: 1 p.m. to 3:30 p.m

December 16th: Marketing Your Business
Who: Michigan SIBDC Staff
What: This event presents practical applications of marketing concepts designed to grow small businesses. It covers basic marketing tools including market analysis and research, target marketing, assessing competitors, and key marketing implementation tools.
Where: Online
When: 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.

December 19th: Business Legal Issues
Who: MI SBTDC Staff
What: This course is an introduction to the different types of legal entities that are appropriate for structuring and starting a new business.
Where: Online
When: 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.

December 29th: Michigan Business Incubator Association: The Hatching
Who: The Michigan Business Incubator Association
What: This event helps move new, local business ideas from concept to reality, and provides winners with funding, legal support, market research, office space and more.
When: 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
Where: Dublin Square Irish Pub East Lansing, MI

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If you’re unable to attend the events above, there are still ways you can make your winter break meaningful in an entrepreneurial way. Take the time to re-familiarize yourself with the different resources available at the University. Here are some helpful resources and wisdom you can use to brush up on your knowledge:

Tips for Women Entrepreneurs
The University of Michigan has one of the largest living alumni networks in all the world. Here are a few hints for up and coming women entrepreneurs.

Five Ways Students Can Shock the Urban World in Detroit
What does the future hold for Detroit, a city with a rich history and long legacy of innovation, a city on the brink of resurgence? If you’re interested in urban entrepreneurship, check out this article on ways to get involved in the big city.

Seven Tips for Pitching Your Startup
If you have plans for pitching your startup in the near future, here are a seven tips to brush up on for ways to successfully pitch your startup to investors.

Twelve great reads for innovators and entrepreneurs
Whether you’re a seasoned entrepreneur with a startup or two under your belt, in the midst of an entrepreneurial journey and in need of inspiration, here are a few books you can read during winter break.

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If you have a burgeoning startup or idea for one, then winter break is the perfect time to start researching competitions to apply for to put your startup to the test. Also, research opportunities to apply to receive funds from the University and other investors. Here are some upcoming competition and funding opportunities in business, entrepreneurship, and innovation happening in 2017:

January 2017: Tulane Business Challenge Competition
The Tulane Business Model Competition (TBMC) focuses on identifying and precisely defining the assumptions of the new venture, testing those assumptions in the field, and then changing (pivoting) based on lessons learned. The top winner will receive a $40,000 grand prize. Applications to compete in the competition are due January 27, 2017.

February 2017: Jump Start Funding
The Provost-funded CFE Jump Start Grant Program provides financial support to undergraduate and graduate students to help them achieve their entrepreneurial ambitions and develop their skills and ideas. These grants give you the extra support you need to get your venture up and running, including funding for prototyping, legal, and travel needs, and additional mentorship and resources from the CFE. Applications for the next round of Jump Start Grants will open on February 24, 2017.

March 2017: The Big Sell
The Big Sell Entrepreneurship Competition was created to offer people with big dreams a great opportunity to put those ideas into action. Every applicant who is selected will have two minutes to sell their idea to a large audience that electronically votes for the best ideas and some of the most brilliant minds in Northwest Indiana and the country. Winners of this national competition get to share about $100,000 in cash and prizes.

April 2017: The Idea to Product Competition
The Idea to Product® Competitions, founded at The University of Texas at Austin by the Chair of Free Enterprise, are early-stage technology commercialization plan competitions that aim for unique product ideas with clear market demand that use innovative technologies.

Comments (3)
  • rahim

    December 8, 2016

    thanks for your good tips

  • Ruben Madera

    January 27, 2017

    Excellent tips and tricks. good job.

  • Emily Rose

    January 30, 2017

    These tips are very helpful for me, thanks to talk about these points.

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