01.04.19 Baylor Baugh Center Entrepreneurship UpdatesJan. 4, 2019
Dear Friends and Partners,
I am writing this letter to update you on recent developments from the Baugh Center for Entrepreneurship and Free Enterprise and alert you to upcoming events and opportunities.
The mission of the Baugh Center is to encourage and facilitate entrepreneurship outside the walls of the Baylor Business classrooms. God has blessed our team with generous friends and partners like you with a common heart to help foster and equip likeminded business leaders for worldwide service from within and outside the Baylor community according to the Christian tenets outlined in the Baylor University mission.
On November 30, the Institute for Family Business honored the 2018 Texas Family Business of the Year Award winners during a beautiful gala banquet at the Paul L Foster Campus for Business and Innovation. The awards program – now in its 29th year – recognizes outstanding family-owned firms who demonstrate a commitment to business continuity while serving their employees, community, and industry. This year's sixteen award winners included two companies inducted into the Texas Family Business Hall of Fame. We appreciate those of you who served and supported these remarkable family businesses.
I would like to invite you to visit campus next month, on February 21-23, as the Baugh Center hosts the eighth annual Baylor New Venture Competition. Today, we announced the top ten finalist teams that will visit campus to compete next month. These impressive businesses hail from prominent universities such as Wharton and MIT. Each year, the quality of the deals continues to exceed our already-high expectations; over time, of the finalist teams who win the honor of visiting Baylor campus, 85% go on to run their companies, and the average capital raised per finalist business is approximately $250,000. If you have never attended one of the Baylor venture competitions, this would be a terrific year to get connected. We appreciate the 200 mentors, judges, sponsors, students, faculty, staff, and other volunteers who are currently giving and serving to help catalyze successful student ventures. This year, Baylor teams will compete for cash and in-kind prizes at a special dinner on Friday night; you are warmly welcome to attend to help support our talented undergraduate entrepreneurs. Saturday's celebration banquet will once again award $50,000 to the grand prize winning company, in addition to cash and in-kind prizes to the other nine finalist teams.
The Business & Innovation Living-Learning Center (B&I LLC) has been full of fun and transformative activity this semester. The integrated living environment for Baylor students engaging with the Baugh Center recently wrapped up a weekly luncheon in which students and faculty discussed the relationship between faith and entrepreneurship. One of the regular student attendees reflected, "I am better connected with faculty, and learning how to live as a Christian in business has been awesome." The first-year students enjoyed built-in study groups with their classmates and roommates in the beautiful Brooks Flats. Classroom conversations extended into late-night talks and ongoing topics for discussion. This fall, the student leadership team catalyzed, developed, planned, and executed a variety of community-building events ranging from 'Kahoot Night' to a popular two-week long 'Brooks Flats Royale' competition. LLC students also participated in a variety of outreach initiatives by partnering and volunteering with local apartment complexes, Mission Waco, and Operation Christmas Child; one student mentioned, "it was a great break from school and a way to stay in touch with the community." If you know of a high school student setting their sights on Baylor and Hankamer, please recommend that they apply to the Business LLC for their first-year on-campus living experience!
In 2018, the Free Enterprise team facilitated 13 presentations promoting freedom and capitalism, hosting a combined 800 guests. Each semester, these attendees include students from across campus, business school faculty, and other members of the Waco and Baylor communities. Some of the 2018 guest speakers included Barbara Demick of the Los Angeles Times, PJ Hill of Wheaton College, Michael Munger of Duke University, as well as local entrepreneurs Blake and Kimberly Batson of Common Grounds and Luke and Rachel Whyte of Waco Tours.
2019 kicks off with an equally exciting speaker lineup with renowned academics Thomas Hazlett of Clemson University and David Audretsch of Indiana University Bloomington, presenting as part of the Free Enterprise Forum. In the spring, local entrepreneurs Nancy Grayson of Lula Jane's and Brett and Emily Mills of Jesus Said Love will take the stage for the Confessions of an Entrepreneur lunch-speaker series.
The McLane Scholars Reading Program attracted a wide variety of students from across campus during the spring and fall semesters in 2018. This academic cohort, which supports the intellectual development of undergraduate students interested in the intersections of entrepreneurship, economics, and public policy, wrapped up the fall class on November 15 by filming a "thank you" message to the funding donor. 38 students applied for the upcoming spring cohort, and the 12 admitted participants are now preparing for the spring class by gathering their reading materials regarding the topic of Economics and Education.
This month, the Baugh Center launches it's first full semester of the Baylor Community Entrepreneurship Program, an innovative faith-based entrepreneurship training system designed to provide churches with an ongoing bridge to business owners and ventures in their area. Highland Baptist Church in Waco and First Woodway will serve as the first pilot hosts, beginning January 14th and January 16th, respectively. Business people at Highland and First Woodway are eager to use their business skills to give back by serving the church, their local communities, and fellow entrepreneurs as facilitators, trainers, coaches, and mentors.
Finally, please join us in congratulating Julie James, our Baylor soccer senior midfielder who was named to the 2018 United Soccer Coaches Scholar All-America First Team. Julie, a Fairview, Texas native, also earned a United Soccer Coaches All-America selection for her play on the field, helping lead the Bears back into the NCAA Elite 8 and earning a Big 12 regular season title. She holds a 3.73 GPA in the Baylor Business Fellows, Entrepreneurship, and Economics program. To those of us in the Baugh Center, Julie is known for her academic excellence, proven leadership, and deep personal commitment to Christ. Congratulations Julie!
I appreciate you and would love to hear from you!
Dr. Kendall Artz
Director, Baugh Center for Entrepreneurship and Free Enterprise
Curtis Hankamer Chair in Entrepreneurship
Please email Roxie Collier at Roxie_A_Collier@Baylor.edu if you would like to be included on an email list to receive these updates via email.