Tag Archives: Creighton University

A New Perspective: Entrepreneurial Media

New perspectives. They are refreshing. They are inspiring. They are educational. Most of all they are necessary to grow.

Throughout the past five months I have been involved in a new experimental night class called Entrepreneurial Media. Every Monday night my traditional business views on entrepreneurship have been expanded into a journalistic and media realm of thinking. My professor, Dr. Carol Zuegner, saw an opportunity a couple of years ago after attending Big Omaha to incorporate a innovative and creative business planning class into the journalism curriculum. Being a business student, I jumped at the opportunity to take the class and surround myself with students who encompass the other piece of the puzzle to entrepreneurship. The students were mostly writers, reporters, designers and developers, and then there was me, one of three business students. The collaboration and thought provoking ideas in the class was outstanding I am very glad to have been a part of it.

Throughout the semester we listened to several speakers who are putting their ideas and plans into action and are achieving high success. My two favorite speakers were Jen Edney and Dusty Davidson.

  • Jen Edney, Edney Adventure Photojournalism
    • Jen Edney is a graduate of the Creighton University Department of Journalism, Media and Computing who perfectly exemplifies living on the edge. She took her passion of photography and sailing and has made an international business of it. Traveling all months of the year, she photographs sailing regatas all over the world and is one of the most respected professionals in the field. Jen has been featured in the Los Angeles Times, YACHT Magazine, CBS Sports and ABC Prime Time. Throughout her career she has shot in locations many people would label as paradise and spends a majority of her time in the water. One thing that sets her apart from other professional sailing photographers is her drive and hunger for adventure; she is known as a daredevil because of her willingness to shoot photos in the water while large vessels and sailboats move right in her direction. Along with her photography, she has created a new camera strap product made of military durability rope. Jen had a lot of great advice for us aspiring entrepreneurs and the thing that resonated with me the most was when she told us to never believe that you cannot turn your passion into a career. Follow her photos and expect big things out of Jen; she is just getting started.

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  • Dusty Davidson, Silicon Prairie News
    • Dusty Davidson is a University of Nebraska-Omaha graduate who co-founded Silicon Prairie News. After graduation he he spent some time working in corporate software development and found that he was not fond of the standard 9-5. So, alongside fellow Omaha innovator, Jeff Slobotski, Dusty took control of his drive to start something that excited him and could keep him in his favorite city, Omaha. They saw an opportunity to highlight the flourishing entrepreneurial scene within the Midwest. He explained that for many years there was this belief that tech startups could only be successful on the coasts, especially in Silicon Valley. With the advancement of technology and the excitement for entrepreneurship, the trends were shifting and creatives and innovators were finding large success with putting their ideas into action in cities like Omaha, Des Moines and Kansas City. In 2008 the idea for SPN became a reality and now four years later they have solidified a large presence within the entrepreneurial community. SPN is a content based news site that covers all things entrepreneurship. Their entrepreneurship conference Big Omaha is now one of the most prestigious and sought after conferences to attend in the country. Big Omaha’s success led into creating Big Des Moines and Big Kansas City. These three conferences make up the Big Series and are well worth attending. Dusty is a mover and a shaker and just co-founded a web hosting startup called FlyWheel. To say he is a go getter is an understatement. His best advice for our class was, “Try to get a job or start a career where your soul is not sucked through your nose.” SPN is growing at a rapid pace and Dusty is one of the leading entrepreneurs in the country.31348_0110

Credits: Photos from Jen and Dusty’s Twitter Account

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My New Journey of Adventure and Empowerment

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As many know, I have danced around with several possibilities as to what I should do after graduation. And, as some of you may or may not know, I am receiving my degree in Social Entrepreneurship in ten days and I am sort of an unconventional business student; I have no desire to wear a tie to work, I do not want to sit in a cubicle and I do not want to work for a giant corporation. So, to make these unconventional desires a reality I spent this past year connecting with as many like-minded people as I could to expand my knowledge of the social enterprise world. From road tripping to California with my best friend visiting socially driven companies in the fall, to becoming involved with Silicon Prairie News and the Big Series in Omaha, to living and working in NYC for a month, I have tried to put myself out in the world to take advantage of the endless opportunities and to initiate as many conversations as possible.

After many months spent procrastinating school work by looking at job opportunities, tweaking my resume over and over, and making tough decisions that could potentially affect my career, I have finally accepted a job offer! I am incredibly humbled, grateful and excited to announce that as of June 15, 2013, I will be embarking on a six-month volunteer journey with…

Krochet Kids International to Lima, Peru! 

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Krochet Kids International is a non-profit organization that I became a huge advocate for after visiting their HQ in the fall. I fully believe that they best fit and align with my life values, goals and desires. Krochet Kids mission is to empower people to rise above poverty. To make this mission a reality, KKi believes that all people can grow holistically and enrich their lives if given an opportunity. They employ women in Northern Uganda and Lima, Peru who have backgrounds filled with poverty, low wages, little hope, but have the potential to do great things in the world. They make handmade crocheted hats, scarves, shirts, headbands and other fashion items that are then sold all over the world. Krochet Kids pays a living wage, provides job training and growth opportunities, facilitates mentoring and education classes, and most of all provides hope within impoverished communities.

Kohl Crecelius, co-founder of Krochet Kids, explains more about KKi and talks about using your passion to make a difference.

Krochet Kids added their Peru location about a year and a half ago so I am very excited to use my entrepreneurial skills in my Production Assistant Intern position. I will have a hand in all things business related in the operation. I will deal with quality control, shipping, inventory, product development and get a little taste of everything Krochet Kids Peru has to offer. Alongside me will be three other Production Assistant Interns and a Photojournalism Assistant intern. We will all live together in an apartment in the Chorrillos District of Lima. I will be entering Peru right as their winter is beginning, so I will experience mild temperatures and a heavy fog called garúa. Aside from working, I am excited to learn Spanish and to learn more about Peruvian culture. Lima is a fairly large city so I will experience new foods, music, styles and people. Also, I may have the opportunity to visit Machu Picchu and the Amazon Rainforest. Even though Lima is a large metropolitan city, there are a large portion of citizens who live in poverty every day. I am eager to learn and see how the different demographics interact and how Lima is addressing the needs of the impoverished. To say that I am completely stoked to live in Peru is an understatement!

This is Jacque’s story, one of the women working with KKp. This video exemplifies the positive impact Krochet Kids is having in Peru.

As I mentioned above, this is a volunteer position. Am I nervous or concerned about not getting paid? No. I trust that everything will work out the way it is supposed to. I was lucky to have had the opportunity to go to Creighton University for the past four years, where we were encouraged everyday to live out the Jesuit teachings to be men and women for and with others. Service was a large influential portion of my college career, from going on service trips to West Virginia to volunteering as a mentor at a local high school. I feel called to use my skills and attributes in a positive way to make a lasting impact on people. There is no better time to answer this calling than when I am 22 years old without any attachments. I hope to grow more than I ever thought I could and I hope to challenge myself everyday.

This was part of my acceptance letter to Krochet Kids Peru…

Our hope and vision for these coming 6 months is that they will stretch you in a unique way.  From being immersed in a new culture, to learning the behind-the-scenes of what we do, to using- and growing- your skills and gifts for a cause you believe in, we want this experience to shape you for the future.  

You will be challenged.  You will challenge others.  Your worldview will be expanded.  And our goal is that by the end of your time with us, you’ll feel more prepared to take next steps toward your career and life dreams. 

Now that’s what I am talking about! Thank you to everyone who has helped me along the way of finding my passion. I am excited to share this adventure with you! Follow this blog for all updates.

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Check out their products at www.krochetkids.org

* If you would like to donate to help me fund this journey, you can directly donate to me, or at www.krochetkids.org/donate. Write For Lucas Turner in the “write a note” section, and email nic@krochetkids.org to notify him of the donation on my behalf. All donations are tax-deductible. Do not feel obligated at all to do this. Thank you very much for your support!

Credits: Photos and Videos from krochetkids.org

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Change-Making as a Lifestyle

Goals…For many, setting goals means the start of new resolutions, new diets and hopes of having an “out with the old, in with the new” mentality. Typically, people set goals that only improve themselves. Let’s make our next goal a little different. Let’s try something new and incorporate “giving back” into our everyday lives. Being charitable is a win-win situation because the lives of people in need are significantly improved and you feel better about yourself because of your generous efforts.

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Being charitable doesn’t necessarily always constitute donating money or giving hand outs. There are multiple avenues you can use to approach donating your time, love or compassion. Advocating for a cause, hosting a benefit, serving after a natural disaster or just being a listening ear for others are all options for living a life for and with others. For the person who cannot spare extra time out of their busy schedule, things like buying food from local farmers, shopping at socially driven companies or donating that jar of coins that have been accumulating in your kitchen for years to a non-profit are all admirable acts that one can be proud of.

For the tech savvy type of person, giving back has become extremely more convenient in the past decade. Micro-lending websites give contributors the option to donate a loan to entrepreneurs in developing countries. This loan can provide essential tools to run a small business such as a goat, a stove, school supplies, etc. Other online options include charitable online auctions like the socially driven startup I worked for this winter, Charity Tick. On Charity Tick, your bids on items directly support a non-profit and you can win great items like iPads, cameras and bikes for extremely low prices. The whole process is a win-win for the consumer and the charity.

No matter how you do it, giving back is necessary and very rewarding. It is never too late to add a new goal into your life. Take some time to figure out a charitable cause you are passionate about and try to incorporate helping or advocating for it into your everyday life. It will be one of the most beneficial decisions you will ever make. Winston S. Churchill said, ” We make a living by what we get. We make a life by what we give.” Strive to make the best life possible.

Check out these amazing organizations…

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A New Wave of Entrepreneurship

People read about and engage in what interests them, whether it is entertainment, technology, world news, sports, etc. During the hype of the printed newspaper and television news, it was very convenient to flip through the different sections of the paper or watch the news at a certain time to receive your niche in news. Also, if consumers really wanted to dive even further into their interest niche, magazines provided them an excellent opportunity. Now, with the revolutionizing of the Internet, mobile apps and satellite radio, the then “readers” of news are now becoming the “instant alert” receiver of news.

Readers are not going to change their normal routine unless there is a new option that promises more convenience, reliability, authenticity and benefit. Had no one ever had the entrepreneurial spirit to start up things like Twitter, mobile apps for companies like ESPN, or entrepreneurship websites like Mobilize or Silicon Prairie News, more consumers would still be sipping their coffee while browsing through pages of the daily paper. Browsing still happens, it is just in a more focused way.

Today, there is an opportunity for new age entrepreneurs to take on the new Web 3.0 craze. Founders that have found the most success have come from people who saw a gap in the market and acted on that need by creating a new and innovative approach to an old method. A great example of shooting the gap is that of Reid Hoffman, mastermind behind Linkedin. Many of the social media sites available before Linkedin gave users access to a plethora of people ranging from colleagues, family to old schoolmates. Hoffman saw the need for people to connect with others in their professional field and created the platform Linkedin, offering more of a focused and professional approach to social media. Users can connect with others along with receiving news specific to their interests and industry. Today, Linkedin serves as one of the largest networks on the internet.

Being a product of the millennial era, young entrepreneurs have a large opportunity to find great success by incorporating a creative mind, technology and the media into the next big idea. The table is set; now it is time for entrepreneurial action.

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