CEI Announces Spring Mentor Madness with Center’s EIRS

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The Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation received a Small Business Ecosystem Partner Grant from the City of Charlotte to assist small businesses through an integrated support program at UNC Charlotte involving customer discovery training, access to technical talent, mentorship and other services.

The UNC Charlotte Small Business Transformation Catalyst will support founders through entrepreneurial training, mentoring, capital formation and workforce development support. To lead this initiative, the Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation announces Spring Mentor Madness with our two Entrepreneurs in Residence (EIR), Jenny Jackson and James Smith. “With several resources available to small businesses to support growth, the Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation at UNC Charlotte and our EIRs will be focused on building connections to these resources, supporting entrepreneurs through one-on-one mentoring, hosting workshops and delivery of training programs,” stated CEI Co-Director Devin Collins.

Jenny Jackson has been a mentor to regional and National I-Corps teams at UNC Charlotte and has a background in corporate innovation. “I worked for the largest life insurer developing business cases to test new products and services for their direct-to-consumer market. I want founders to graduate from our programming and be able to clearly define the problem they are trying to solve.” Where Jenny’s expertise focuses on the frontend of innovation, James Smith has over 16 years of experience scaling companies. “My background and experience will provide insight into the excitement of starting, growing, maturing and expanding your company.” As Center EIRs, Jenny and James will not only lead the Charlotte Launch customer discovery program, but also host monthly workshops with guest speakers and panels, focusing on key issues Charlotte founders are facing; including funding & financing, company resources, partnerships and commercialization.

Both Jenny and James are looking forward to working with Charlotte founders and immersing themselves in the Charlotte startup community. Both have mentioned sharing personal experiences and working one-on-one with founders as a highlight for their positions.

For one on one meetings, contact:

Jenny Jackson jjack203@uncc.edu

James Smith jsmithj1@uncc.edu

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