The Berry Center supports student interest in entrepreneurship by funding academic enrichment courses in entrepreneurship, by organizing an annual entrepreneurship panel discussion as part of its leadership program (see the LEADS page), and by providing financial support for Enactus, a student group that organizes entrepreneurial projects.

Cedar Ridge Winery

Entrepreneurship students visited the
Cedar Ridge Winery

Entrepreneurship Courses

Cornell has offered two academic enrichment courses, “Introduction to Entrepreneurship” and “Applications in Entrepreneurship”. In recent years the courses have been taught by Professor David Burgess, a social entrepreneur and academic instructor affiliated with the University of Iowa. Students learn the fundamentals of entrepreneurship, develop business plans, and interact with local-area entrepreneurs in the classroom and through field trips. The courses have served as an incubator for entrepreneurial projects that have been implemented and sustained through the Enactus student group.


Enactus students with the first dollar earned by the art gallery project

Enactus Student Group

The Berry Center supports Enactus, formerly SIFE, an international undergraduate student organization that promotes the practice of entrepreneurship. Students organize business and community projects, and participate in regional and national competitions. Projects have included an art gallery, a community garden, a late-night café, a book exchange, and a program to promote financial literacy among students. The Cornell Financial Group, a part of Enactus, manages a $50,000 stock portfolio. Despite being a relatively new chapter, the Cornell Enactus group has already won awards and received recognition in regional and national competitions.

Entrepreneurship Courses: Distinguished Visitors

  • Bruce Lehrman, CEO of Involta, a data management firm (Cedar Rapids, IA)
  • John Rhomberg, CEO of B4 Brands, hand hygiene products (Lisbon, IA)
  • Lon Mishler ’69 & Carol Mishler ’70, co-owners of a financial planning firm (De Pere, WI)
  • Jeffrey Wallman ’76, marketing professor at the University of Oklahoma
  • Matt Gibson ’92, CEO of The Gold Estate (Cedar Rapids), and owner of Designs by Reminisce, a scrapbooking business (North Liberty, IA)

Entrepreneurship Courses: Field Trips

  • Entrepreneurship and Innovation Forum (Iowa City)
  • Cedar Ridge Winery & Distillery to meet with entrepreneur Jeff Quint (Swisher, IA)
  • StartUpCity business incubator (Des Moines, IA)