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Penn State Startup Week To Provide Students With Unique Entrepreneurship Opportunities

If you’re looking to start networking with talented Penn State alums, then you’re in luck. Penn State’s fifth annual Startup Week, sponsored by PNC, will kick off virtually on Monday, March 22.

Although this year’s events will be limited to your screen, students will have no shortage of opportunities to connect with successful alumni, showcase their assets for future employers, and gain access to a variety of entrepreneurship resources.

The very existence of Penn State’s Startup Week can be attributed to College of Information Sciences and Technology graduate David Rusenko. He donated $400,000 to the college back in 2012 — the largest gift from a graduate in the college’s history.

“IST Startup Week” took off from there, and was rebranded as Penn State Startup Week in 2017. Now, in the fifth year of this university-wide initiative, students can expect to engage in pitch competitions, networking events, workshops, and a career fair.

They will also hear from several keynote speakers and panelists throughout the week — including the president of Figure 8 Thinking, LLC, Natalie Nixon — who will deliver a “Get Comfortable With Ambiguity” lecture on Monday, March 22, from 6 to 7 p.m.

Co-founder of Tuft and Needle JT Marino will join Phospholutions CEO Hunter Swisher in spearheading the “Six Degrees of Penn State” lecture on Tuesday, March 23, at 6 p.m.

Meanwhile, founder and partner of Ford Street Ventures Matt Brezina will host “Flipping the Script, Funding Alternatives for your Startup” on Wednesday, March 24, at 6 p.m.

There will also be several panels hosted by alumni for students and faculty who are interested in learning about a variety of topics, including the obstacles faced by women in entrepreneurship and non-traditional funding options for personal startups.

The complete schedule of events can be found on the Startup Week’s website. All Penn State students are invited to attend.

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About the Author

Rory Pelella

Rory is a senior from Binghamton, New York majoring in Spanish and journalism. She's been bleeding blue and white ever since her older siblings decided to create a family dynasty in Happy Valley in 2006. So, as you can imagine, she loves absolutely everything Penn State (especially the Cheese Shoppe downtown). She's also a die-hard Yankees, Knicks, and Giants fan (it's brutal), and would do anything for a good old fashioned New York slice. Feel free to email her at [email protected] or follow her on twitter @rorypelella.

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