6 Reasons to Get Excited for Global Entrepreneurship Week

KC’s Global Entrepreneurship Week Nov. 16-22 features more than 80 events, but we’re sharing the details on our top picks.

Kansas City’s entrepreneurial spirit will be on full display during Global Entrepreneurship Week Nov. 16-22. The international celebration of the innovators and job creators who launch startups and bring ideas to life was founded by the Kauffman Foundation in 2008 and has since expanded to more than 160 countries. With more than 80 events, this year’s GEW is poised to be the best yet.

“Global Entrepreneurship Week is a truly unique opportunity for those in the business community to share in the spirit of entrepreneurship,” says Nathan Kurtz, senior program officer in entrepreneurship at the Kauffman Foundation. “In the past eight years, Kansas City has consistently been among the leading cities for GEW events, demonstrating the momentum and potential of entrepreneurship in our community.”

What can you expect from year’s lineup? We’re breaking down a few of the can’t-miss featured events.

Startup Weekend, Friday, Nov. 13-Sunday, Nov. 15

Before GEW is in full swing, get in touch with your inner entrepreneur during Startup Weekend at Sprint Accelerator. Anyone is welcome to pitch their startup idea and receive feedback from their peers. Teams form around the top ideas and embark on a three-day frenzy of business model creation, coding, designing and market validation. The weekend culminates with presentations in front of local entrepreneurial leaders with another opportunity for critical feedback.

GEW Coffee Kickoff, Monday, Nov. 16

Entrepreneurs, small business owners, companies and everyone in between have the opportunity to network over the magical business tool that is coffee. Rather than everybody in town coming together for a single event, find the participating coffee shop closest to you and make connections in your neighborhood, be it in Excelsior Springs or Lenexa.

1 in a Million, Wednesday, Nov. 18

The Kauffman Foundation’s popular 1 Million Cups presentations are kicked up a notch with this competition showcasing startups. Fifteen semifinalists will receive coaching to sharpen their companies during GEW and the top five will take the stage 8 a.m.-11 a.m. at the Kauffman Foundation this morning to make a presentation that will be streamed live to all 1 Million Cups sites across the country, with the winner receiving $10,000.

Women’s Entrepreneurship Day Thursday, Nov. 19

Women entrepreneurs can ask experts their legal, accounting, marketing and funding questions and learn about available resources 2:30-5 p.m. at Kauffman Labs, then at 5:30 p.m., join Athena League to hear from Erika Klotz, co-founder and CEO of PopBookings, and Laura Steward, founder of Video Fizz and 2015 PIPELINE Fellow. A women in entrepreneurship panel followed by a networking reception starts at 6:30 p.m. in UMKC’s Bloch Executive Hall.

Chat with Apple Co-Founder Steve Wozniak, Thursday, Nov. 19

It’s not every day that you have the opportunity to hear from a founder of one of the world’s most influential companies, so take advantage. Catch Steve Wozniak with moderator Mike Lundgren, VML’s director of innovation strategy and TEDxKC founder and curator, at the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts at 7 p.m., part of HEMP’s 20th anniversary celebration.

Arts in Entrepreneurship Showcase, Friday, Nov. 20

Think art and business are separate? Reconsider. Led by UMKC’s Enactus team, this showcase transforms Bloch Executive Hall into an art gallery displaying the work of young artists from our community. The work will be up for the entirety of Global Entrepreneurship Week but will culminate in the Friday night showcase where participating teams will display works designed as gifts for those visiting Kansas City.

Follow along with the events on Twitter with hashtag #GEWKC and view the full list of Kansas City Global Entrepreneurship Week events here.