Ten (10) students from the Lee Honors College are admitted into the course.  The following students are part of the Spring 2015 cohort:



Ethan Archer


Major: Biochemistry, Minor: Biology

Ethan is junior year at WMU majoring in biochemistry, with a minor in biological sciences. He is a peer mentor in the Lee Honors College, a research assistant in a chemistry lab, and a resident assistant. After graduation he plans to attend graduate school to get a Ph.D. in pharmacology. In his free time he enjoys playing hockey, music, and outdoor activities.

Why Ethan is taking this course: I am taking this course because it is a subject I have never explored before. I think that understanding different fields, and applying a variety of problem solving techniques to an issue can help me find a solution in the most efficient manner possible. The startup community probably has some novel ideas.  I hope to gain new insights that I can apply to my professional life as a scientist in the future.

[ view full resume ]

[ blog postings for the course ]

Selected book: Hwang and Horowitt (2012) [ Archer – Book Summary – Hwang-Horowitt | Video ]

Eric Carlo


Major: Industrial & Entrepreneurial Engineering

Eric is majoring in Industrial and Entrepreneurial Engineering. He left his home country, the Dominican Republic, almost two years ago to pursue his studies. Eric has an interest in doing a minor in Environmental Studies. In the future he plans on starting and building his own business and helping his community in his home country grow. Traveling and cultural experiences are some of his passions.

Why Eric is taking this course: One of the reasons I am taking this course is because I have always been interested in having my own business. Also, I want to learn about entrepreneurship and what makes a community thrive and innovate. I want to learn from the communities I visit so I can help my own community back in my country.

[ view full resume ]

[ blog postings for the course ]

Selected book: Hwang and Horowitt (2012)Carlo – Book Summary – Hwang-Horowitt | Video ]

Simbarashe Chirara


Major: Finance and Entrepreneurship, Minor: General Business

Simba is a junior in Western Michigan University’s Haworth College of Business. He is pursuing his BA, double majoring in finance and entrepreneurship and is also co-captain of the Men’s Rugby team at WMU. He is on the Dean’s list at WMU and has received the highest academic award (the D. Haenicke Scholarship), as well as the Greenleaf Trust Scholarship. Simba is also involved with the Champions for Life International and helps with planning their fundraising events, budgeting and dispersing the funds. He currently works at Greenleaf Trust Company as a Finance Intern and has worked there since early 2014. Simba is originally from Harare, Zimbabwe where he played on the Zimbabwe U20 Rugby team; he has been playing rugby since he was eight years old.

Why Simbarashe is taking this course: I have always had a keen interest in the subject of entrepreneurship but never really dove deep into it. From this course, I am hoping to gain a better understanding of the subject, learn more of the role the environment plays in the success of start-ups and how I can apply the lessons in future businesses of my own.

[ view full resume ]

[ blog postings for the course ]

Selected book: Florida (2012)Chirara – Book Summary – Florida | Video ]

Elyse Hogan


Major: English and Spanish, Minor: Speech and Hearing Processes

Elyse is a senior at Western Michigan University (WMU), where she is studying English and Spanish. She works at the Lee Honors College at WMU. She stays involved in the Kalamazoo community by volunteering and supporting local businesses. In her free time she enjoys being with friends and family, reading, painting, traveling, swimming, and watching movies. Above all, she loves exploring and learning new things. In the future she hopes to use her writing and communication skills in order to help others and improve the world in some way.

Why Elyse is taking this course: I am taking this course because I love to learn new things. I want to learn about a topic I don’t know anything about (entrepreneurship), as well as meet new people and visit new places. Also, I am interested in learning about how entrepreneurs work with community and non-profit organizations.

[ view full resume ]

[ blog postings for the course ]

Selected book: Florida (2012) [ Hogan – Book Summary – Florida | Video ]

Alexis Lenderman


Major: Entrepreneurship, Minor: Non-profit Leadership

Alexis is a junior majoring in entrepreneurship. She recently transferred from the University of Michigan-Flint. Alexis expects to graduate in May 2016 from the Lee Honor’s College. Currently she works at the Kellogg headquarters in Battle Creek on the Real Estate Team.

Why Alexis is taking this course: I want to take this course because it is my dream to open my own business. However, I have no idea how to do that, and with this course, I am hoping to gain more insight into how that is done. I am hoping that by traveling around and speaking with other entrepreneurs, I will learn more about why location matters in a startup and what is required of me to have a successful business.

[ view full resume ]

[ blog postings for the course ]

Selected book: Feld (2012)Lenderman – Book Summary – Feld | Video ]

Josie Marshall


Major: Management

Josie is currently a full time student at Western Michigan University (WMU) where she is studying Management and Entrepreneurship. This past semester she was in the WMU start-up accelerator, Starting Gate, where she worked on her business, For the FuNd$ of It. This business is an online program that makes coordinating fundraising events easier. She continues to work on this business so she can launch it in the near future. Other than school and working on starting the company, she was recently promoted to a sales assistant position at AVB Construction. She assists with mailings and open houses, as well as helping AVB representatives with clients. Fitness is a passion of hers, so she also is a part-time fitness instructor for Bootybarre, which is a dance, Pilates, yoga class.  She loves to be outside and exploring, but also enjoys reading and being crafty.

Why Josie is taking this course: As an entrepreneur, it is important to explore many different areas of the business world. I am taking this class because as we travel, I can see what makes or breaks startups around the country. From this experience, I will be able to apply what I have learned to benefit my future businesses.

[ view full resume ]

[ blog postings for the course ]

Selected book: Feld (2012)Marshallj – Book Summary – Feld | Video ]

Kaitlin Marshall


Major: English and Economics

Cultivated by a background rich in academics and athletics, Kaitlin graduated high school and set forth at Western Michigan University on an adventure capable of encompassing both the analytical and creative parts of herself. Her major studies include both Economics and English, while her workplace stimulates one of her main hobbies/interests: technology. Technology aside, her interests span far and wide; such a vast range of hobbies and the tendency, from a very young age, to hit the ground running has taught her every turn of the page is a brand new adventure, no matter where.

Why Kaitlin is taking this course: I am taking this course in order to get a better understanding of the way startups: 1) come to fruition, and 2) find a way to thrive in various economies. Additionally, I work for a tech company that would be considered a startup in the Kalamazoo area and want to gain knowledge of how other environments and areas around the nation work.

[ view full resume ]

[ blog postings for the course ]

Selected book: Feld (2012)Marshallk – Book Summary – Feld | Video ]

M. M.

Major: Biomedical Sciences

M.M. is a freshman at Western Michigan University; she is majoring in Biomedical Sciences and minoring in Spanish and Chemistry. She also attended cosmetology school for two years. She is a part of many scholarly clubs on campus and is involved with Big Brothers Big Sisters and loves teaching and working with children. Along with going to school, she also works at the College of Health and Human Services as a receptionist. She is an environmentalist and an extreme animal lover. Her plans for the future are to graduate from Veterinary school and start her own veterinary clinic and hair salon.

Why M.M. is taking this course: I am taking this course because I want to become well rounded while in college. This type of class usually scares me but I felt that it was time that I learn about things that are not in my major. It will also help me when I am starting my veterinary clinic when I am older.

[ view full resume ]

[ blog postings for the course ]

Selected book: Florida (2012) [ MM – Book Summary – Florida | Video ]

Jill Puckett


Major: Advertising, Minor: Gender and Women’s Studies

Jill is currently a freshman at Western Michigan University studying advertising and promotions. She is also looking to get a minor in gender and women’s studies. With the knowledge gained from her studies, she hopes to make advertising more positive and inclusive in the future.  She is from Marshall, Michigan, where she grew up in a home that was centered around running a small business. She feels that growing up watching her family’s company grow has really sparked an interest in business and entrepreneurship for her. She has learned so much already about running a small business informally and she is proud to say that she is continuing her education at the Haworth College of Business. Along with business, she also is  interested in painting, playing the viola, and playing golf with her family.

Why Jill is taking this course: I am taking this course because I grew up in an entrepreneurial family and would like to see how others approach starting a business in different ways and with the help of incubators. I am intrigued with how where starting a business can affect new and young companies, and I think this class can teach me so much about choosing the right places to conduct business.

[ view full resume ]

[ blog postings for the course ]

Selected book: Hwang and Horowitt (2012) [ Puckett – Book Summary – Hwang-Horowitt | Video ]

Adam Roth


Major: Biomedical Sciences, Minor: Chemistry

Adam is a junior studying biochemistry and biomedical sciences at Western Michigan University. He regularly engages in Western Michigan’s campus wide extracurricular activities. Some of his engagements include membership in the Chemistry Society, the Student Health Advisory Council, and the Pre-Professional Physician’s Assistant Society. As a proud member of the Kalamazoo community, he volunteers at the local hospitals and schools. All of his achievements, academically and non-academically, throughout my college career can be directly attributed to Western Michigan’s Martin Luther King Jr. Academy. The MLK Academy, along with the Kalamazoo Promise donors, has provided him with unlimited opportunities by selecting him as a recipient of the Multicultural Scholarship and aiding him with his college tuition. The goals he has set for himself are consistent with a “pay- it- forward” type philosophy. With the knowledge that he has gained and the new information that he anticipates to learn, he looks to utilize his potential for innovation to give back to those who have helped him get where he is today.

Why Adam is taking this course: I am taking this course because I want to learn how an innovative idea combines with community resources to create a successful business.

[ view full resume ]

[ blog postings for the course ]

Selected book: Hwang and Horowitt (2012)Roth – Book Summary – Hwang-Horowitt | Video ]


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