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  •  Entrepreneur Program Deadline is June 1

    Monday, May. 21, 2012 10:41 AM

    Applications for SCU’s unique program for early-stage entrepreneurs are due June 1, and space is filling rapidly, according to Daniel Aguiar, executive director of the Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship (CIE).

    Up to 36 California-based companies will be selected to participate in the California Program for Entrepreneurship (CAPE), a series of classes, workshops, mentorships, and networking led by Santa Clara University faculty and augmented by the school’s Silicon Valley connections, beginning in July. Launched in 2010, CAPE adds to the California economy by supporting individuals and teams in the start-up phase of their enterprises.

    The cost of the subsidized program is $5,000 per participant, with reduced fees for multiple applicants from the same venture. SCU alumni and current students are eligible for a $2,000 fellowship from the business school, bringing their cost to $3,000. More information and a link to the extensive online application is found at

    Selection will be based on the quality of the business concept, the opportunity for growth and scalability, and the potential to make an economic impact on the community. More than 40 entrepreneurs, most with ongoing ventures, participated in the first two CAPE programs.

    Those selected will complete virtual exercises, work with faculty coaches and mentors, and join colleagues in two weekend onsite sessions. In September, the cohort will come to the Santa Clara campus for an intensive, week-long workshop, after which they will prepare a business ‘pitch’ under the guidance of Silicon Valley executive mentors. Two post-workshop weekend sessions will prepare group members to compete in a $5,000 business plan contest in November for the final onsite session and certificate ceremony.

    “CAPE has proved to be a valuable training ground for businesses that need an extra edge for marketing, strategizing, focusing their business plan, or discovering finance options,” said Daniel Aguiar, executive director of the business school’s Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship, and a former entrepreneur. “Our goal is to turn promising businesses into prosperous employers for communities around California.”

  •  SCU Takes Entrepreneurship Prize (Again)

    Tuesday, Mar. 6, 2012 5:00 PM

    A team of Santa Clara University School of Business MBA students received “The Entrepreneurs’ Choice” award during the Venture Capital Investment Competition (VCIC) held at University of Southern California on March 2.

    The students, all from the Class of 2012, placed third in the overall competition, which included MBA teams from California and the western states. MBA students Manoj Yadav, Suraj Ayinikatt, Vinod Nair, Shashank Suggar, and Padma Nagaraja, comprised the SCU team that had previously won in the internal business school “intramurals,” sponsored by the Entrepreneurs’ Connection (a graduate business student club),  and the Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship.

    Similar in format to a business plan competition, the VCIC emphasizes the role of venture capitalists. Teams heard real-life pitches from entrepreneurs, and were scored on their analysis and evaluation of the plans. The SCU team topped competitors from UCLA, San Diego State, and Arizona, finishing just behind Colorado and Thunderbird University (AZ).

    SCU team members said "VCIC was a great experience. Through our preparation and participation, we gained special insight into the reasons why VCs pick the companies they fund. We saw how specific aspects of the business model inlfuences their financial decisions, what specific constraints the VCs themselves are under, and how in doing all this, they encourage a new gneration of entrepreneurs."

    It is the second year in a row that the SCU team has taken "The Entrepreneurs' Choice" award, which is voted on by the participating entrepreneurs as "the team with which they would most like to work."

    Alumni Steve Foster ‘84, Rocky Pimentel ‘77, and Andy Bartley MBA ‘10 were SCU team mentors, and student leaders Quyen Le and Terry Tran, coordinated the events. 

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