The Office of Entrepreneurship & Innovation offers a variety of free workshops on topics ranging from lean canvas principles to design thinking to how to pitch an idea or find investors.
While most events are designed for the university community, we offer occasional gatherings on timely topics of interest to the wider entrepreneurial community. Stay in touch by signing up for our mailing list or following us on social media.
2021 Spring Workshops
In this interactive, three-part series, Permjot Valia (OEI Mentor in Residence) will break down the elements of language and storytelling to demonstrate the role they play in persuasion. This series will benefit those preparing to pitch for investment or other sources of funding. It is also relevant for anyone who wishes to enhance their communication skills to better deliver complicated messages or motivate and inspire others to action.
- The Art of Language - Learn the basics of language and tips for communicating both efficiently and effectively to any audience. Jan 19, 2021
- Storytelling - Drawing on techniques employed by Pixar, Permjot will help you learn how to construct a narrative with a strong arc, compelling characters and tension that keeps your audience engaged. Jan 20, 2021
- The Pitch - Learn how to create and deliver a successful pitch. Practice your pitch-in-progress and receive live feedback from Permjot during this interactive session. Jan 21, 2021
In this four-part series, explore the foundational skills of innovation, drawing on human-centered design and lean startup methods. At the end of this series, you will better understand how to identify meaningful problems, conduct empathy maps and customer discovery, use prototyping and experimentation to improve a business model, and create a connection with any audience.
- Start with the Problem - No matter your interests, identifying meaningful problems gives you a starting point for innovation. Learn the importance of framing and reframing problems from Scott Key, the co-founder and CEO of Every Shelter. Fast Track- Jan 26, 2021 / Standard Track- Jan 28, 2021
- Heart of the Customer - Explore how practicing empathy and conducting meaningful interviews can inform your ideas. Learn how to structure interviews, find the right people and organize your data to improve your product, service or business idea. Fast Track- Jan 26, 2021 / Standard Track- Feb 4, 2021
- Prototyping - Whether you are creating a physical prototype or digital interface, learn what a prototype is and how to get started. Fast Track- Feb 2, 2021 / Standard Track- Feb 11, 2021
The Art of the Pitch - Set your idea free! Learn how to structure a presentation to connect meaningfully with any audience…and understand why no two pitches are the same. Fast Track- Feb 2, 2021 / Standard Track- Feb 18, 2021
Launch Lab Series
The Launch Lab is intended for students who have an idea for a product or service and want to explore how to bring it to the market.
- Lean Canvas 101 - Learn how to apply the Lean Canvas tool to inform product and service development, drawing on insights from users and customers from day one. Feb 9, 2021
- Business Modeling - Learn how to design a one-page business model, no matter the stage of your idea. Explore how to design and test hypotheses that will reduce the risk of developing a product that does not meet the needs of your customers. Feb 16, 2021
- Data Visualization - Learn how to find and explore public data sets; practice telling a story using the tools of data visualization. Mar 2, 2021
- Identifying & Sizing Market Opportunities - Understand how to pair customer discovery and market research strategies to assess and effectively communicate the opportunity aligned with your product or service. Mar 9, 2021
- IP Crash Course -As the creator a product, service, or company, it’s important to understand how to protect your intellectual property. Explore the relevance and impact of IP on your life as a creator and consumer. Mar 16, 2021
New Venture Series
From choosing a structure to understanding how to measure return on investment in terms of both profit and impact, the New Venture Series is intended for founders and founders-to-be.
- Choosing a Structure - Deciding on a business structure (nonprofit, LLC, C Corp, B Corp, etc.) can be complicated. This choice will determine how you are taxed, narrow your financing options, and signal something about your strategy. Learn about the different business forms and follow up with an optional 1:1 office hour to help you determine what structure is right for you. Feb 25, 2021
- Financial Planning for New Ventures - For a new venture, happiness is a positive cash flow! Gain an introduction to the essential elements of financial planning, including income statements and balance sheets, that all entrepreneurs need to understand. No background in business required. Mar 4, 2021
- Sources of Funding for Entrepreneurs - Where do entrepreneurs find early-stage funding to start and grow their ventures? That’s the question we tackle together in this workshop, which will overview the stages of venture finance with a special focus on non-dilutive grants and seed funding. Mar 11, 2021
- Measuring Profit and Purpose - Understand the importance of building value and measuring impact from the beginning in your new venture. Learn to communicate value in a way that resonates with your partners, investors and other funders. Mar 18, 2021
Flying Solo Series
The Flying Solo Series is designed for those interested in building businesses with a single employee – yourself! If you are exploring the “solopreneur” path as an artist, contractor, freelancer or consultant, this series is for you.
- Solopreneurship: Building a Business of One - How do you capture value and protect your financial future in a business of one? Learn how the business model canvas can be applied to freelance ventures, consultancies and sole proprietorships. Mar 23, 2021
- Getting Out of the Garage - Learn about tax planning for freelancers, co-working resources, and strategies for the “1099er” life. Mar 30, 2021
- Brand Basics - Understand the importance marketing and brand development for attracting and retaining clients and customers, and for communicating the purpose behind your consultancy or sole proprietorship. April 6, 2021
Check out archived workshops & more on our YouTube channel!
Faculty with an interest in using workshops as a required or optional component of their courses should contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.