Dial in to Penn State Startup Week

Penn State Startup Week is a great place to connect with talent and network with other entrepreneurs. Credit: Penn State. Creative Commons

This week, Penn State Startup Week will be inviting students to explore innovation and entrepreneurship and connect with industry leaders. It’s also an opportunity for businesses to connect with talent, discover emerging innovation and network with other changemakers. Here’s how you can tap into the events going on from April 4-8. 

Yes, Startup Week is designed for students. Here’s how it can also benefit you. 

The event — now in its sixth year — will feature keynote speakers and panels covering topics like women trailblazers, innovation during the pandemic and the economic impact of entrepreneurship within our communities, among other topics. 

The week also includes student pitch competitions, networking events, workshops, and startup and business career fairs — all valuable ways to connect with other industry leaders and meet Penn State students who are looking for jobs after graduation.

All core events are open to the public and do not require registration. In addition, you can see any keynote session either virtually or in person at the Penn State Innovation Hub at 123 S. Burrowes Street, State College, PA 16801.

There is a full calendar of events, including a panel on women trailblazers, innovating during COVID-19 and how entrepreneurship benefits our world. (and with the live streaming option, keeping up with Penn State innovation has never been easier). 

Here are a few top picks for the week: 

Keynote Speaker JT Marino: “Cultivating Communities: Entrepreneurship’s Role in our Economy”

Wednesday, April 6, 6-7 p.m.

Penn State Innovation Hub, Room 603

Penn State alum JT Marino ‘09 is the co-founder of Tuft & Needle, a company that started with a $6,000 personal investment in 2012 and has grown to over $200 million in annual revenue profitably with no outside investments in less than six years. 

Why go: We love Penn State success stories! You’ll hear Marino’s entrepreneurial journey and discover his company’s impact.

Small Business and Startup Career Fair

Tuesday, April 5, 5-7 p.m.

Penn State Innovation Hub, 1st and 6th floor

Presented by Penn State Career Services, the Small Business and Startup Career Fair is a University-wide recruitment fair for students who are seeking opportunities within a small business or startup environment. The fair, which is open to all students of academic year or major, will feature employers who are seeking candidates for full-time, internship, co-op and research positions.

Why go: It is a perfect matchmaking event to find the talent that your company is seeking now, or will be needing soon. 

Happy Valley Capital Pitch Competition

Monday, April 4, 5-7 p.m.

Penn State Innovation Hub, Room 603

Startup Week features numerous student pitch competitions that include prizes and rewards such as funding, networking resources and mentoring. 

You can sit in on the Happy Valley Capital Pitch Competition on Monday and watch teams compete for monetary prizes totaling more than $12k while pitching to, getting feedback, and building connections with judges from a wide range of professional entrepreneurial backgrounds. 

Why go: Tomorrow’s companies are getting much-needed boosts now, and these pitch competitions are a great way to get a pulse on the next wave of talent and ideas to hit Happy Valley.

For more information on Startup Week, including a full schedule of events, visit startupweek.psu.edu. Participants can engage with and follow Startup Week on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram at @PSUStartupWeek and #PennStateStartup.


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