Linking Colleges to Local Entrepreneur Networks

I’ve just returned from a pleasant trip up to Waterville, Maine where I participated in an early planning meeting for the Kennebec Valley Entrepreneur Network.  KVEN is an emerging entrepreneurial network designed to help Central Maine residents seeking to start new ventures and to build more fast-growing businesses.   This is an exciting project in many ways, but one of the more interesting twists is that the network is being developed in close cooperation with Colby College.  Colby is a world-class liberal arts college with numerous high quality academic and outreach programs.  But, like many smaller colleges, it hasn’t built close connections to local entrepreneurs.   The new Colby Entrepreneurial Alliance, led by Colby’s Career Center, will help Colby students explore entrepreneurial career opportunities while also participating in regional activities like KVEN and engaging with many successful Colby alumni.  The effort is just starting, but if it succeeds, it could offer a powerful model for building connections between smaller colleges and their surrounding entrepreneurial communities.

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