Purdue signature

September 26, 2013

ICC-IT Friday morning coffees helping promote entrepreneurial ecosystem at Purdue

One place to see the burgeoning ecosystem for moving Purdue ideas to market in action is from 8 to 9 a.m. Fridays at the Burton D. Morgan Center for Entrepreneurship in Discovery Park.

That's when the Purdue Innovation and Commercialization Center-Information Technology (ICC-IT) hosts Friday morning coffees initiated by Gerry McCartney, the center's inaugural director and Purdue's CIO, vice president for information technology and Olga Oesterle England Professor of Technology.

The gatherings attract faculty, staff and students as well as entrepreneurs from the Lafayette area. They meet casually to network, talk shop, exchange ideas and experiences, and hone business plans. Sometimes, they end up forming business relationships. Anyone with an interest in entrepreneurship is welcome.

"I get to hear about cool ideas, problems other startups are having and how they solved them and just talk with other folks trying to build something," says Mikel Berger, a regular attendee, Purdue graduate and founder of DelMar Information Technologies. "Professionally, it helps my company because we partner with others to build new software businesses."

Participants also listen to pitches about entrepreneurial ideas, projects, or businesses each week and offer feedback. The gatherings are run as an open forum and no registration is required. Coffee and tea are always served, and sometimes doughnuts.

ICC-IT, created in 2012 to move Purdue discoveries to the marketplace more quickly and spur economic development in Indiana and the nation, holds the coffees every Friday morning except the day after Thanksgiving and the week of Christmas.

There also is a Google Group that hosts a rundown of activities at past coffees, interesting articles about entrepreneurship and announcements about business plan and startup competitions, among other things.

For more information, visit the ICC-IT website at http://purdueicc.org. The website includes material such as a calendar of entrepreneurship-related events, stories about successful Purdue entrepreneurs (faculty, staff, students or alumni), and links to useful entrepreneurial resources.