News & Events
04/20/2011 - 6:29pm
Startup Weekend is back in Miami! If you're not familiar, Startup Weekend is a 54 hour event where developers, designers and business development folks come together to pitch an idea and launch a business, all in one weekend. It is a great opportunity to test startup ideas, meet potential co-founders, build the community in Miami and launch your next startup!
If you don't have the next big idea just yet, but you have the entrepreneurial itch, or a crazy set of hidden talents, join us. In addition to pitching ideas, you'll have the opportunity to sell yourself and join a team to help bring that idea to fruition. The weekend will be packed with Launch Pad workshops, awesome guest speakers and tons of swag and prizes.
Mark your calendar for Friday, May 20 through Sunday, May 22, 2011 for Startup Weekend in Downtown Miami. For more information and to register for the event visit: miami.startupweekend.org
04/13/2011 - 1:54pm
Anchor Kevin Corke interviews internet retail guru Loren Ridinger during her visit to The Launch Pad
View more videos at: http://www.nbcmiami.com.
04/07/2011 - 12:15am
The Launch Pad team was all smiles April 1st - and not because it was April Fool's Day. Awards were presented for the annual Business Plan Competition for undergraduate and graduate University of Miami students and our Launch Pad users were big winners.
In the graduate category, Jay Hirschfield, a 2009 alumnus of the School of Communication, David Learner, who earned his MBA from the School of Business in December 2010, and Trevor Cowan, an undergraduate student, won Grand Prize and $10,000 for their venture, Chiral, an apparel and design company that uses high-resolution photography to create clothing from images. www.chiralapparel.com
(L to R) Trevor Cowan, David Lerner & Jay Hirschfeld (Chiral), Dr. Susan Amat (executive director), Shahzam Malik (eTuk), Fabiana Claure & William Villaverde (Superior Academy of Music)
Second place in the graduate category and $5,000 went to Fabiana Claure and William Villaverde, both doctoral students at the Frost School of Music, for Superior Academy of Music, a piano studio that provides private piano lessons.
Second Place in the undergraduate category and $5,000 went to Shahzain Malik, an entrepreneurship major, and Carl Mbao, an economics major at the School of Business, for eTuk, which aims to assemble and distribute to dealers in Pakistan an electric motorcycle taxi.
Third Place in the undergraduate category and $2,500 was awarded to Quin Worden, a marketing and finance major at the School of Business, for PT United, a service that gives physical therapists, trainers and others the opportunity to become distributors of medical and therapy equipment.
In addition to the top undergraduate and graduate prizes, the Paul K. Sugrue Entrepreneurial Spirit Award and $2,000 was presented to Fabiana Claure. The prize is presented annually to the student who has demonstrated the highest spirit of entrepreneurship.
04/06/2011 - 12:14pm
Loren Ridinger, Sr VP for marketamerica.com, serial entrepreneur, and fashionista, visited the University of Miami on April 4 to share her story of building an online empire. Loren had her fair share of struggles along the way - but believed in her business from the beginning. With business partner and husband, JR Ridinger, Loren has created one of the largest online shopping portals at Market America with 6 million shoppers. In addition to this retail giant, Loren is the founder and creator of multiple beauty and fashion product lines: Creator of the award winning cosmetic line, Motives® by Loren Ridinger, the uber-luxurious skincare line, Cellular Laboratories™, the solution-oriented product line, fixx™, and Founder of the exquisite jewelry collection, Loren Jewels®
Watch her entire presentation here and get inspired to follow your passion! You can tweet Loren @lorenridinger
02/01/2011 - 5:41pm
01/31/2011 - 6:03pm
UNIVERSITY OF MIAMI ENTREPRENEURSHIP INITIATIVE EXPANDED TO BECOME NATIONAL MODEL
‘Launch Pad’ Joins White House ‘StartUp America’ Partnership
CORAL GABLES, FL (January 31, 2011) – The University of Miami Launch Pad, the entrepreneurship resource center of the University’s Toppel Career Center, is a part of a White House strategy to expand U.S. innovation and job creation across the nation.
In Washington this morning, “StartUpAmerica,” President Barack Obama’s national effort to stimulate economic growth and the creation of quality jobs, announced the creation of the Startup America Partnership, an independent private-sector alliance to dramatically increase the development of innovative high-growth firms nationally. As part of that effort, the White House announced that The Blackstone Charitable Foundation has committed to a $5 million expansion of the Blackstone LaunchPad program piloted at two Detroit colleges. Based on a model created by the University of Miami, LaunchPad will be replicated over the next five years in five other distressed regions around the country.
The Launch Pad at the University of Miami uniquely treats entrepreneurship as a career path and encourages University students and alumni to start new ventures in South Florida. A $2 million pledge from The Blackstone Charitable Foundation replicated the University of Miami Launch Pad model in two schools in Detroit: Wayne State University and Walsh College. Since then, Blackstone LaunchPads in Detroit have attracted nearly 1,000 users and are developing new ventures on their respective campuses.
“The University of Miami is grateful for the visionary support of the Blackstone Foundation for The Launch Pad’s distinctive model of entrepreneurship education, and we are pleased that our work in Miami can help other universities and colleges develop entrepreneurial opportunities for their students and communities,” said William Scott Green, Senior Vice Provost and Dean of Undergraduate Education at the University of Miami.
The Launch Pad provides concrete tools and guidance from experienced venture coaches to help aspiring entrepreneurs transform untested ideas into vital businesses. Fostering and supporting a new generation of entrepreneurs can have a profound impact on the economic revitalization of a particular region. Promoting entrepreneurship is a core component of President Obama’s national innovation strategy for achieving sustainable growth and quality jobs.
Since its inception in 2008, The Launch Pad at the University of Miami has helped foster 50 new businesses and created over 100 new jobs, contributing to the economic recovery of South Florida and demonstrating that positive economic impact results from investing in entrepreneurship.
The initiative announced today by the White House are the initial response to President Obama’s “call to action” to unite a range of public and private commitments that will expand access to capital for high-growth startups throughout the country, and to develop entrepreneurship education and mentorship programs that empower more Americans to not only get a job, but to create one. Carl Schramm, CEO of the Kauffman Foundation, will serve as a founding board member of the StartUp America Partnership, which is funded by the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation and Case Foundation, the Partnership will be chaired by Steve Case, co-Founder of AOL, CEO of Revolution LLC and chairman of the Case Foundation. For more information on the StartUp America Partnership, visit www.startupamericapartnership.org
The University of Miami Launch Pad opened in August 2008 as part of the Toppel Career Center and offers career guidance, resources, and advice to entrepreneurs, innovators, and inventors at the University of Miami. The Launch Pad’s programs connect ideas, people, and resources; provide advice and guidance; build relationships with experts in the local business community; and thus increase the likelihood of bringing new enterprises, whether for-profit or not-for-profit, to South Florida. www.TheLaunchPad.org www.miami.edu