Contact: Bill Dougan
WHITEWATER As the saying goes, with age comes wisdom. For the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater’s three-year-old student Collegiate Entrepreneurs’ Organization, award-winning wisdom comes quickly.
The UW-Whitewater chapter took home a handful of awards from the organization’s national conference, as it has done in all three years of its existence. The conference was held in October in Chicago and featured chapters from more than 60 universities.
Chapter adviser Bill Dougan said UW-Whitewater’s performance reflects the dedication of its students.
“This is indicative of the fact that we have quality students and a quality program here,” he said. “We are competitive and clearly a competitive component of the national CEO organization.”
UW-Whitewater’s chapter received first place for best chapter plan, which outlined the chapter’s mission and goals. UW-Whitewater took second place in the fundraising idea category with a plan to resell textbooks professors were discarding when they moved into the College of Business and Ecnomics’ new building, Hyland Hall.
Dougan was also honored, coming in second as best chapter adviser for his unselfishness and devotion to seeing students succeed.
One chapter member, Michael Fitzpatrick, was selected as a finalist in the Acton Foundation’s Take an Entrepreneur to Lunch contest for an essay he wrote about an experience he had with Craig Schmidt, an entrepreneur and lecturer at UW-Whitewater.
Chris Brooks, UW-Whitewater chapter vice president, said he was very pleased with UW-Whitewater’s performance at the national conference.
“It feels great to come away with three awards, especially for being one of the smaller chapters,” he said. “I was very proud.”
At the conference, UW-Whitewater was one of four chapters chosen to lead sessions on how to achieve success as a chapter. In their sessions, UW-Whitewater CEO members led other chapters in discussions on promoting entrepreneurial events, fundraising ideas that work, starting your own chapter business and improving your chapter.
“We had the chance to show that we are successful even though we are a small chapter from a small campus,” Brooks said.
While Brooks and Dougan are happy with the performance at the conference, they are also looking forward to next year. Dougan said work has already begun to put the chapter in a competitive position for next year.
Brooks said the chapter is looking to bring in big speakers next semester, possibly from Google, Microsoft or Apple. The chapter is also planning to host its annual business plan competition and give away several thousand dollars to the winners.
“We expect big things for next semester,” Brooks said. “We’re revamping everything and we want to start off with a bang.”
For more information on UW-Whitewater’s Collegiate Entrepreneurs’ Organization, visit http://www.uwwceo.org/.