By: Joshua Danker-Dake | Category: Professional Services | Issue: October 2010
Dr. Mike Morris, head of OSU’s School of Entrepreneurship, teaches a course in the Cowboy Bootcamp for Entrepreneurs.
If you’re a business owner looking to expand your business, or if you’ve got the notion to start a business from scratch, Oklahoma State University is making a wealth of information and resources available to you. Beginning Saturday, October 9, the Riata Center for Entrepreneurship, part of OSU’s Spears School of Business, is hosting its 2010 Cowboy Bootcamp for Entrepreneurs at the OSU-Tulsa campus (700 North Greenwood).
“The Cowboy Bootcamp for Entrepreneurs is an intensive, hands-on learning experience for entrepreneurs starting a new business, those who want to grow an existing business, or even someone with just an idea,” says Mary Means, assistant director of the Riata Center for Entrepreneurship. “The bootcamp gives you the tools to carry your dreams forward and make them a reality. We cover issues that businesses face: developing and refining a business concept, understanding a profit model, guerrilla marketing, and making smart decisions on critical financial, legal, and operational tactics."
Members of Oklahoma State University’s world class entrepreneurship faculty run the program, and they also bring in experienced guest entrepreneurs. “Some days will feature an additional hour of training with an expert – a CPA, a lawyer, someone from a loan firm – that you can talk with and address the relevant issues in your business,” says Means.
Dr. Mike Morris is the head of the School of Entrepreneurship, and teaches many of the bootcamp’s courses. “We want to take the mystery out of the process,” he says. “We want to make it clear that anybody can start a successful venture if they have a good idea and a disciplined approach – our content relates to that disciplined approach.”
James Austin shares his thoughts during Cowboy Bootcamp.
The program also includes business consulting. “We’ll have some of our best MBA students there,” says Morris. “We’re partnering with the University of Tulsa, so we’ll have some of their graduate students attending also. After class there will be people available who can be sounding boards and give consulting assistance as you try to move your own idea forward.”
Networking with other entrepreneurs is another strength of the program, Morris says. “By attending, you’re introduced to dozens of other people with dreams to create businesses, and you’ll have the opportunity to get to know those people.”
The Cowboy Bootcamp for Entrepreneurs is open to anyone – you don’t have to be an OSU graduate. The cost to attend is $650, which covers course materials, business consulting, breakfast each morning and a graduation lunch. Scholarships are available for minorities and the financially disadvantaged. “It’s a packed program and an intense six weeks,” says Morris. “Our costs far exceed the price – the program wouldn’t be possible without our sponsors – so it’s really quite a bargain.” Space is limited, and the deadline to register is October 6.
Cowboy Bootcamp for Entrepreneurs is from 8:30 a.m. to noon on October 9, 16, 23, and 30, and November 6 and 13, plus optional one-hour sessions on selected Saturdays. All sessions are held on the OSU-Tulsa campus. To register online or for more information, visit www.entrepreneurship.okstate.edu/bootcamp.
Bootcampers Stephen Lassiter and Jason Ting.