The Falls School of Business at Anderson University recently received its first $75,000 check from a $150,000 Coleman Foundation grant that will be used to create a micro-incubator, providing students hands-on entrepreneurial activities.
The micro-incubator will allow students to obtain funding to create small businesses. Upon approval of a business plan, a student could receive anywhere from $100 to $10,000 or more to create their business. The grant will be self-sustaining as the young entrepreneurs pay back the borrowed funds as they make money through their business.
With this first payment, the Falls School of Business is moving towards implementing the program at the beginning of the 2005-2006 academic year.
"The Coleman Foundation has given us the opportunity to continue building entrepreneurial learning opportunities for our students. Any student with a business idea, be it small or large, will now have the opportunity to become an entrepreneur," said Dr. Terry Truitt, dean of the Falls School of Business.
"I already have students lining up with business ideas," added Greg Heberling, associate professor of business and economics. "We couldn't be more excited. The faculty is looking forward to consulting the students and helping them fulfill their business dreams."
The micro-incubator will work alongside the Flagship Enterprise Center of Anderson to develop an entrepreneurial culture among businesspersons in the City of Anderson. "This program shows students the structure that entrepreneurs go through in the real-world," said Art Patterson, executive director of the Flagship Enterprise Center. "Nearly all entrepreneurs struggle with the commercialization gap. The Falls School of Business and Coleman Foundation have found a way for students to address this problem without mortgaging their future," Patterson continued.
The Coleman Foundation, Inc. is a not-for-profit, private, independent foundation established in the state of Illinois in 1951. The source of the endowment was the estates of Dorothy W. and J.D. Stetson Coleman. Since 1981, the foundation has invested more than $25 million in the promotion of entrepreneurship as a profession and the establishment of quality programs of entrepreneurship education for students of all ages and practicing entrepreneurs.
Anderson University is a private, four-year, Christian liberal arts institution of approximately 2,700 undergraduate and graduate students. Established in 1917 by the Church of God, the university offers more than 60 undergraduate majors and graduate programs in business, nursing, education and theology. The Falls School of Business is one of Anderson University's largest academic departments offering eight undergraduate majors as well as MBA and DBA programs. The school is accredited by the Association of Collegiate Business School and Programs (ACBSP) and is a member of the Christian Business Faculty Association (CBFA).