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Fifth Annual Entrepreneurship Extravaganza, Nov. 4-5

Posted Oct, 14, 2010

Kent State University’s Center for Entrepreneurship and Business Innovation presents the fifth annual Entrepreneurship Extravaganza on Thursday, Nov. 4, and Friday, Nov. 5. The event will include several workshops, panel discussions and speakers, allowing attendees to learn from experienced entrepreneurs about launching and accelerating their businesses. The program is free and open to the community and to all students.

“The workshops and panel discussions will follow three tracks: Inspire, Idea and Implement,” explained Julie Messing, director for the Center for Entrepreneurship and Business Innovation at Kent State. “The workshops and panel discussions will focus on minority and not-for-profit entrepreneurship. The first track looks at making the transition from student to entrepreneur, networking, supply chain opportunities for minorities, and does sex sell in advertising. The second track reviews such things as identifying an opportunity, does a not-for-profit make sense, protecting your idea, and social media and marketing. Finally, the third track discusses funding your business and alternatives to launching a new business.”

A highlight of Entrepreneurship Extravaganza is the Michael D. Solomon Speaker Series in Entrepreneurship, beginning at 6:30 p.m. on Nov. 4 in the Kent Student Center Kiva. This year’s keynote speaker is André “Thunder” Thornton, president and CEO of ASW Global, a supply chain management company based in Mogadore, Ohio. Thornton is also a Cleveland baseball legend who played professional baseball for 21 years.

Thornton has more than 20 years of experience in entrepreneurial ventures. He also is serving as Kent State’s first President’s Ambassador, a new program created and implemented out of the university's Division of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. The program is a vehicle for securing the services of a local, high-level person of color who will serve as a catalyst for change, promoting pluralistic understanding and mutual respect among diverse constituencies of students, staff, faculty and administrators at the university.

A reception in Room 204 of the Kent Student Center will follow Thornton’s speech.

On Nov. 5, “Lunch with an Entrepreneur” will be offered starting at noon in the Kent Student Center Ballroom. Participants also will hear from successful entrepreneurs, including Warren Anderson, Darrell McNair and Thornton, as they share their “Minority Success Stories.” Lunch is free for those that pre-register.

All participants in this year’s Entrepreneurship Extravaganza will receive a complimentary entrepreneurial took kit. Events are free and open to the public, however, registration is requested. To register or view a full schedule of events, visit For more information, contact Kent State’s Center for Entrepreneurship and Business Innovation at 330-672-9430 or

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Media Contacts:
Julie Messing,, 330-672-9430
Emily Vincent,, 330-672-8595