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Commentary & Insights on Entrepreneurship The Top of Mind blog brings an array of editorial views to current events shaping the world of entrepreneurship. Engage, exchange, and expand your own view of the world!

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Casting A Wider Net With Community Colleges

Innovation Fund America (IFA), our program delivering high-impact education, coaching and pre-seed funding to scalable, technology-based startups via community colleges around the country, has quietly been having a big couple of months. It's a complicated and demanding program to launch and it's taken nearly a year and a half to get to this point, but we're excited that IFA is now open for business in two communities--and we're really just getting started.

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Posted by: Jonathan Robinson
on January 30, 2014
Mr. President, A Little More 'E' Please

Tuning in for the state of the union (SOTU) address is somewhat of an annual ritual for me. For the past two decades, spanning several presidencies from both parties, I torture myself straining to hear that one word, however challenging it is to say (and spell)--entrepreneur. So I was encouraged when President Obama dropped the "E" bomb early in his 2014 SOTU address, made even more special by the fact that he referenced a woman entrepreneur. And I wasn't alone in my enthusiasm as the twittersphere erupted likewise.

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Posted by: Thom Ruhe
on January 29, 2014
Elite Startups Get in the Ring

Last night I had the privilege of watching the first ever Get in the Ring Competition in the United States. Though this competition is in its sixth year, this was the first year that the United States had participated. The process began in August with groups of judges sorting through about 300 applications from startups all across the country. After several rounds of judging, the final eight startups were invited to Kansas City to participate in the U.S. version of Get in the Ring,the American Startup Clash.

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Posted by: Cameron Cushman
on November 20, 2013
Why Dissuading Students From Grad School Could Create More Jobs

What if we could take the top talent coming out of colleges and universities today, those that tend to feed into law school, med school, Wall Street and consulting, and put them in startups all over the country? Imagine the job growth possibilities we could create in the country just by giving recent graduates a taste of that entrepreneurial bug. Now, what if I told you there's an organization trying to do just that. Enter--Venture for America.

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Posted by: Nathan Kurtz
on November 18, 2013
Coming Soon To A Community College Near You: A New Mentor For Startups

If you've been paying attention to our work at Kauffman for a while, it should come as no surprise to you that we're committed to making community colleges a front door to entrepreneurship. In particular, we see tremendous potential in these schools to support innovative, high-growth, technology-based startups in their communities, whether their founders are students, researchers, experienced entrepreneurs or full-time professionals preparing to take their first leap into entrepreneurship.

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Posted by: Jonathan Robinson
on October 17, 2013
Startup Scene: Mexico City

When one thinks of Mexico City, startup companies would not normally be at the top of anyone's mind. But, I had the chance to spend a few hours with some of the local entrepreneurial organizers there last week and was very impressed with what I saw.

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Posted by: Cameron Cushman
on October 08, 2013
'Dream Big America' Increases Startup Exposure

Last week we launched a brand new program for startup companies who had previously presented at 1 Million Cups, the Kauffman Foundation's weekly educational program that features two local startups presenting to the community over coffee. This new effort, launched with the folks at Dream Big America, will continue to put a spotlight on startup companies from throughout the country.

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Posted by: Nate Olson
on July 17, 2013
Policy Forum Blog on Reforming Higher Education

On the heels of the Kauffman Foundation's $1 million grant to Lorain County Community College to take its successful model for funding startups national, the Foundation released papers from last year's Entrepreneurship in Higher Education Retreat.

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Posted by: Thom Ruhe
on June 14, 2012
A Model for Community College Entrepreneurship Takes the National Stage

Yesterday, the Kauffman Foundation announced a $1 million grant to Lorain County Community College to replicate its Innovation Fund model, which connects entrepreneurs to mentorship, education and capital, on a national scale.

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Posted by: Thom Ruhe
on June 1, 2012
Startup America Focuses on Midwest Manufacturing

The White House’s Startup America initiative shines a welcome light on the innovative, next-generation Midwest manufactures that are redefining manufacturing.

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Posted by: Thom Ruhe
on March 3, 2011

Twitter Updates

  • .@TheRoasterie's Danny O'Neil talks about differentiating himself in the coffee market http://t.co/I1itBj3OeA in @KhanAcademy series.
  • 24 of top 50 venture-backed companies in America in 2011 had at least one foreign-born founder http://t.co/R8xeEEoQ3A
  • RT @kauffmanfs Stretch your literary legs - See "Who's Doing the Learning?" & other readings 4 Building Your Startup http://t.co/RH9PClBLqt
  • .@Virtual_EA's Lakeshia Grant encourages would-be entrepreneurs to incorporate core values into business http://t.co/tcuUOkTT7p @KhanAcademy
  • Getting caffeinated with coffee startup @Beander_ http://t.co/9p28IQegoR via @1MillionCups