RIT Simone Center hosts annual entrepreneurship conference Oct. 27

Event features informational sessions, networking opportunities and keynote address with mastermind behind ‘Elephant Pants’




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Entrepreneurship experts will share their words of wisdom with aspiring business owners during the 13th annual Entrepreneurship Conference at Rochester Institute of Technology. The event, which runs 8 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. Friday, Oct. 27, in RIT’s Campus Center, features information sessions, networking opportunities, student competition and a keynote address.

The luncheon keynote address will be delivered by Nathan Coleman, a 2009 graduate of RIT’s Saunders College of Business and founder and CEO of Elephant Pants. Earlier this year, Coleman struck a deal on ABC’s Shark Tank with fashion mogul Daymond John to develop his e-commerce retail company that donates 10 percent of net profits to the International Elephant Foundation. The product line targets ages 18-34 and includes harem pants, yoga pants, loungers, kimonos and jewelry.

Workshops sessions include “Funding Your Venture,” “Innovation in Health Care,” “Social Media and Marketing for the Entrepreneur,” “Entrepreneurship in Security, Information technology and Data Analytics,” “Legal and Intellectual Property in Entrepreneurship,” and “Incubators—What you need to know about being in one,” among others.

As part of the conference, attendees and the RIT campus community can watch students participate in the Tiger Tank competition semi-finals, 10 a.m. in Ingle Auditorium, Student Alumni Union.

Tiger Tank gives students the opportunity to pitch their business ideas to a panel of judges with a chance to win cash prizes. Twenty-five student teams will pitch their ideas during the semi-finals on Oct. 27. The Tiger Tank finals featuring the top five teams will be Nov. 16.
According to Richard DeMartino, professor and director of RIT’s Simone Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship, the conference will educate and inspire current and future business owners.

“RIT’s Entrepreneurs Conference is designed to promote entrepreneurial awareness, networking and education for those interested in entrepreneurial careers and activities,” explained DeMartino. “This is tailor-made for anyone who believes that creativity and bold thinking are vital to success. Guest panelists, including academic and real-world practitioners, will link theory and practice, in spirited dialogue with participants, as they share their innovative stories, techniques and ideas that have established them as leaders in their respective fields and industries.”

The event is sponsored by RIT’s Simone Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship and RIT’s Saunders College of Business.

For more information about the conference, go to www.rit.edu/cob/entconf/ .