In 2017, the average Black Friday and Cyber Monday shopper spent just over $400 purchasing gifts online for the holiday season. Cyber Monday alone broke a record with $6.59 billion in online sales. At the same time, the average online gift to a nonprofit organization has remained steady at just over $100. In response to this difference, Giving Tuesday was established as an international day of giving that harnesses the collective power of individuals, communities, and organizations to encourage philanthropy and to celebrate generosity worldwide.
Giving Tuesday is a valuable opportunity for individuals and nonprofits to come together under the banner of generosity and philanthropy. On November 27th, people will make decisions, both large and small, to impact their communities. It is a powerful reminder that small acts of generosity can add up to significant change. The numbers provided above often make us think that generosity and philanthropy are words retained for the Bill Gates and Warren Buffets of the world. However, generosity can, and likely will, begin in smaller increments.
In a nationwide search, Texas A&M University has been ranked as a top university for graduate and undergraduate students interested in entrepreneurship. It was part of the Princeton Review Top Undergraduate Entrepreneurship Programs 2019.
Coming in at #22, Texas A&M boasts a dynamic entrepreneurial ecosystem that includes the McFerrin Center for Entrepreneurship, Startup Aggieland, Blackstone Launchpad, and the Texas A&M I-School.
More than 300 schools reported data about their entrepreneurship offerings and rankings are based on entrepreneurial curriculum, student, faculty and staff entrepreneurial ventures, extracurricular offerings, and scholarships and aid provided to students pursuing entrepreneurship.
Sometimes brilliance in marketing and merchandising takes the shape of a beaver. Texas travelers know when they see billboards with quirky slogans telling them to “Buc-ee’s or Bust!” that clean restrooms, beef jerky, 79-cent fountain drinks, and beaver nuggets soon await them.
Arch “Beaver” Aplin ‘80, the co-founder and current president of Buc-ee’s spoke to almost 400 students, faculty, staff and local business leaders as part of the 20th annual M.B. Zale Visionary Merchant Lecture Series hosted by the Center for Retailing Studies. To excel in this industry, Aplin said, “I must exceed the customer’s expectations.” Buc-ee’s differentiates itself from the general convenience store category by building enormous “travel centers.”
The recently opened Katy store boasts 53,000 square feet of retail space stocked with interesting one-of-a-kind items, like pickled jalapenos. Typical convenience locations are about 3,000 square feet.
Aplin says Buc-ee’s is “always looking for products that get customers exclaiming ‘whoa, who would have thought they carried that!’” …Read more
Competition is no stranger in the SEC. Whether it’s athletic or academic prowess, students at each university are driven by the desire to be recognized as “#1.” The 2018 SEC Student Pitch Competition boasted an unrivaled level of innovation, skill, and grit that could only be found in the Southeastern Conference.
This year’s competition was hosted at Texas A&M University by the McFerrin Center for Entrepreneurship. …Read more
When YouTube was founded in 2005, no one could have foreseen that the video sharing platform would become an entrepreneurial hot-spot. Professional YouTube creatives generate a product, work with key strategic partners to achieve business goals, develop healthy revenue streams, and engage with their customers to better direct their products and brand. Sounds a lot like running a business, doesn’t it? A professional YouTuber is now, well, a thing. Not only a thing, but a legitimate commercial venture for hard-working creators.
Tyler Anderson ’19 is one such creator. His YouTube channel, TylersReelFishing, has more than 112,000 subscribers, and he’s uploaded more than 800 videos that have garnered 15 million total views. Did I mention he’s done all of this in just five years?
The Mays MS Business program gives students who completed an undergraduate degree in a non-business field an opportunity to develop the necessary skills to be successful in the business world. For Bailey Glenewinkel and Ryan Wendt, it has been a game-changing opportunity.
What started as a group project in the MS Business program is now a career for Bailey Glenewinkel. Bailey, a competitive shotgun shooter armed with an undergraduate degree in Agriculture Business, had a yearning to pursue entrepreneurship. While searching for ways to create her own business, a class within the MS Business program gave her the opportunity she was looking for. In the Integrated Business Experience course (IBE), students create a business and organize a service entity that will enable them “to learn business by doing business.” The business that Glenewinkel and her team created, SKNZ Studios, has become her full-time job.
Ryan Wendt was also a part of the first MS Business class in 2017. Before he was admitted into the program, Wendt completed his undergraduate degree in genetics, but was looking to obtain core business knowledge and skills. After completing the MS Business program, Wendt went to work for Keyence and has found success in his role – and was recently named “Employee of the Month” for June 2018.
Mays Business School offers this 36-credit hour program as a single-cohort, action-based, purposely-designed curriculum intended to help students develop core business acumen, cultivate leadership skills, and dynamically enhance professional marketability in an increasingly competitive job market. The MS Business program is 11 months long and is designed for students with less than 12 months of work experience after completing their undergraduate degree. Students coming directly from their undergraduate degree programs can earn their bachelor’s and master’s degrees in five years.
Note: The MS Business application process will start on Sept. 4.
If you entered the Grand Stafford Theater on the evening of August 13, you would have been surrounded by some of the biggest proponents of entrepreneurship in Bryan/College Station. Business owners, Texas A&M University faculty, and members of local agencies such as the Brazos Valley Economic Development Corporation came together around one common interest: Startup Aggieland.
The McFerrin Center for Entrepreneurship hosted the Startup Aggieland Reveal Party after hinting that those in attendance would have a chance to “meet the new Startup Aggieland.” Attendees were treated to canapés provided by Chef Tai Lee and enjoyed the industrial-chic atmosphere of the historic downtown Bryan concert venue. Conversations drifted among clusters of attendees, each of them buzzing about what exciting new plans the McFerrin Center had in store for Startup Aggieland. …Read more
The ventures at this year’s Entrepreneurship Bootcamp for Disabled Veterans (EBV), hosted by Mays Business School’s McFerrin Center for Entrepreneurship, ranged from network solutions for small businesses to artisan products to novel applications of artificial intelligence. The 21 veterans in this year’s class came from across the United States and represented nearly every branch of the military.
Since 2008, the McFerrin Center has hosted the intensive training program developed to help disabled veterans develop the competencies and skills necessary to create and sustain an entrepreneurial or small business venture. …Read more
The McFerrin Center for Entrepreneurship welcomed 22 veterans to Aggieland for the 11th annual Reynolds and Reynolds Entrepreneurship Bootcamp for Veterans (EBV) on the evening of Saturday, July 14.
EBV at Texas A&M University is an exceptional initiative that leverages the resources and infrastructure of higher education to provide entrepreneurial skills and small business management training to post-9/11 veterans with service-connected disabilities. Part of a nationwide consortia of nine universities offering EBV to disabled veteran entrepreneurs, the overall goal of Texas A&M’s program is to open the door to economic opportunity for our veterans and their families by developing their competencies in creating and sustaining a commercial venture.
The opening ceremonies were held at the Association of Former Students with a welcome address made by Kathryn Greenwade ’88 of the Association of Former Students and opening remarks made by David Shimek ’86 of the program’s underwriter, The Reynolds and Reynolds Company.
Honoring the past, encouraging the future
Ron Poynter, retired Army helicopter pilot and EBV Class of 2012 graduate, was recognized with the Robin ’76 & Robert Starnes ’72 EBV Outstanding Alumni Award and delivered an encouraging and thoughtful speech to this year’s participants. Poynter encouraged the 2018 class to stay focused and engaged in their industry’s trends and to be prepared for a lot of hard work.
The program consists of a 21-day online course followed by a nine-day residency at Texas A&M. During the in-residence portion of EBV, participants will spend the week attending lectures and workshops at Mays Business School’s Center for Executive Development, where they will learn about enterprise basics, lean startup methodologies and small business growth strategies. The bootcamp extends well into the evening hours with individual breakout meetings between participants and volunteer mentors from the local community. Thanks to the generosity of the program’s individual and private-sector sponsors, EBV is offered at no cost to the participants.
This year’s class includes business ventures ranging from an eco-friendly flower alternative to healthcare to drone-imaging services, with nearly every venture focused on employing and giving back to fellow veterans.
Four years ago, Jared ’03 and Risa ’05 Meyer were looking to start their own business. The Mays Business School former students wanted to start a business that directly reflected the values of their marriage: compassion and service. Values for them were determined by their faith and wanting to be people who look outside of themselves to serve others. “Texas A&M holds true to that, as well. It is about everyone making an impact beyond your own world, which Texas A&M does a good job instilling in their students,” Jared described. …Read more