The Bremer Foundation has awarded a grant for $50,000 to the Center for Entrepreneurial Studies (CRES) at the University of Minnesota, Crookston. The grant, which provides $25,000 each year for two years, offers operational support to extend the unique entrepreneurial assistance services and programming of CRES to northwestern Minnesota. It will also focus on developing entrepreneurial awareness among area high school and U of M, Crookston students. Susan Brorson, head of the Business Department serves as the principal investigator for the grant which was written by Kevin Cooper, who serves as director of CRES, and Rachel Lundbohm, the Center’s assistant director.
“We want to engage students and assist businesses by providing technical assistance to area entrepreneurs and conducting valuable research related to entrepreneurship,” explains Lundbohm. “Encouraging students interested in entrepreneurship while getting them involved in the region is also a priority. We appreciate this award from Bremer to support our passion for entrepreneurship and to help us provide assistance to entrepreneurs and businesses in the region.”
Goals of CRES for the next two years include entrepreneurial and small business consulting, community education and outreach that facilitates entrepreneurial networking, and the dissemination of rural entrepreneurship research.
The work of CRES positively impacts entrepreneurs and small businesses in northwest Minnesota by providing no-cost technical assistance to these individuals. Entrepreneurs, companies, and non-profit organizations receiving the assistance of CRES have provided positive feedback regarding their experience with the program. Students who have worked on CRES-initiated projects have also received valuable experience, further contributing to their education and professional understanding.
The mission of the Center for Rural Entrepreneurial Studies is to encourage entrepreneurship through educational leadership, applied research, and insightful consulting. CRES engages the students, faculty, and research facilities of the University of Minnesota, Crookston in order to stimulate the entrepreneurial culture and strengthen the economic vitality of northwest Minnesota.
The U.S. Department of Education awarded a $550,000 congressionally-directed grant to the University of Minnesota, Crookston to establish the CRES in 2010. Congressman Collin Peterson played an integral leadership role in this entrepreneurial initiative and was supported by both Senators Al Franken and Amy Klobuchar. CRES serves the eleven county region of northwest Minnesota, including Beltrami, Clearwater, Kittson, Lake of the Woods, Mahnomen, Marshall, Norman, Pennington, Polk, Red Lake, and Roseau counties, and is located in Dowell Hall 117on the Crookston campus.
For more information, contact Lundbohm at 218-281-8190 (rlundboh@.umn.edu) or visit the CRES Web site at www.umccres.org.