Certificate in Entrepreneurship and Innovation

A Zest for Life

January 21, 2014

John Westbrook, a senior in Organizational Leadership and Supervision, added spice to his life with the Certificate in Entrepreneurship and Innovation Program. Literally.

 

John enrolled in the Certificate Program to broaden his horizons.  After the first few classes, he says he knew he had found something special. His passion was ignited and he launched the venture freshgroundspices.com focused on manufacturing and selling ground spices.

 

"Every major in college is designed to prepare you for a certain career upon graduation, teaching specific skills along the way," he says. "Entrepreneurship is different -- it allows you to see the bigger picture and open more career opportunities, mostly ones that I didn't know existed before these classes."

 

Westbrook founded the venture with his father. The company vacuum seals spices and rubs into single-serve packets to ensure they are as fresh as if ground by the consumer. Westbrook says he saw a niche, because many spices grow stale and are thrown away. "For the gourmet home chef, this can become expensive and frustrating," he says.

 

Though he doesn't know where the spice venture or future will lead, Westbrook has the tools to move forward. "The program has shown me that it is necessary to think outside the box to come up with a unique idea. What excites me as an innovator is the ability for new markets to emerge and take hold in the business world. With today's technology, new industries are able to start in record time," Westbrook says.

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