November 09, 2011

National Collegiate Entrepreneurs Conference is a “Life-changing Experience”

On the last weekend in October, the Neeley Entreprenuership Center hosted the national collegiate Entrepreneurs Organization (CEO) conference at the Omni Hotel in downtown Fort Worth. Most than 900 college entrepreneurs, faculty and speakers met and mingled for three days, plus the TCU vs. BYU football game at Cowboys Stadium.

“For me, the conference was undoubtedly a life-changing experience,” TCU student Zach Freeman said. “One of my highlights was getting to sit down with Dr. Gene Landrum, founder of Chuck E. Cheese and other businesses. I got to go back and forth about a business idea I had. To have that conversation with such a legendary entrepreneur was an incredible experience.”

Student chapter development sessions were held on Thursday, including a session on TCU’s Glenn Entrepreneurial Intern Program, led by Brent Sorrells from TECH Fort Worth, Johnny Ross, founder of MedHab, and Neeley entrepreneurship student Kyle MacLaren, who interned for MedHab last summer. The day ended with a standing-room-only session on personal leadership led by Dr. Ray Smilor.

Friday and Saturday’s keynote speakers and sessions covered ethics, exit strategies, technology, website development, partnerships, funding, creating businesses that change the world, financial skills, common mistakes CEOs make, community service, branding and sessions on entrepreneurship in music, real estate, technology and more. Neeley alum Tim Halperin talked about his entrepreneurial journey in the music industry. EMBA alum George Fassett of Thumbtechs Corp. led a discussion on cloud computing for small businesses. Neeley alum Adam Blake talked about being young and having it all. Highlights include the Lifetime Achievement Award to Dr. Gene Landrum of Chuck E. Cheese, an Elevator Pitch Competition, and the Global Student Entrepreneur of the Year Award.

“We came looking to learn and grow as entrepreneurs, and we didn't leave disappointed,” BYU student T.J. Ruff said. “The speakers inspired us all, and shared some of the key principles and tools they've gathered along the way to aid us in our entrepreneurial ventures.” 


Elaine Cole
PR Manager
Neeley School of Business at TCU