In 1978, Cliff Ensley ’69, ’70, G’71 had an idea to start his own business and just $2,500 to do it. He was used to taking on challenges—there was no stopping him. Growing up, he struggled with a learning disability—at…
Whitman School’s Couri Hatchery Reaches Significant Milestone
The Couri Hatchery, located within the Falcone Center for Entrepreneurship in the Whitman School, recently achieved a major milestone—100 student businesses are now part of the incubator, a student-centered, supportive co-working space and mentorship program that helps student ventures at any level, from idea through start-up, development and growth.
“Through collaboration with organizations across the Syracuse University campus, including the leadership of IDEA and Stacey Keefe, we’ve been able to exponentially grow the Couri Hatchery at Whitman,” says Terry Brown, executive director of the Falcone Center. “We help all kinds of business start-ups for which our students seek support, from those who are trying to provide technology that will be disruptive to the market to those who simply have a unique idea. No business concept is too crazy and nothing is impossible for the Couri Hatchery.”
Promoting and supporting business development among entrepreneurial students across the Syracuse University campus, the Couri Hatchery is named for John Couri ’63, co-founder of Duty Free International and president of the Couri Foundation. Focused on streamlining innovative, emerging student ventures, the Hatchery provides a broad scope of services, including on-campus office space and support, product realization and development services, and business consultation through community mentors and alumni entrepreneurs. It provides SU student entrepreneurs with real-world experience in business innovation and creation, while stimulating interaction between student entrepreneurs and faculty, students, administrators, staff and community mentors.
“The Couri Hatchery is one of our best success stories at Whitman,” says Alex McKelvie, chair of the entrepreneurship and emerging enterprises department at the Whitman School. “The 100 companies we have now have collectively raised more than $2.4 million in external capital over the past year, which is amazing.”
Businesses that have initiated within the Couri Hatchery include, Golden Gear, ThunderCakes, Funk ‘n Waffles and Wholesale Jewelry Liquidators, as well as Brand-Yourself and Dream Water, which were featured on ABC’s “Shark Tank.” Two past tenants, Solstice Power and Azeer, were recently awarded $25,000 each from the Grants for Growth program through CenterState CEO.