University of Northern Iowa

JPEC UNI full color logo

Empowering the next generation of entrepreneurs and innovators.

Friday, March 23, 2018

Kyle Coogler, UNI senior communications major and owner of Creo, a business in the JPEC's R. J. McElroy Student Business Incubator at UNI, has been selected as one of 25 national finalists for the Schulze Entrepreneurship Challenge which is sponsored by the Richard M. Schulze Family Foundation, the Schulze School of Entrepreneurship at the University of St. Thomas, and, a non-profit online platform for entrepreneurship education. 

A panel of 40 judges narrowed the submissions, which included a pitch deck and video, to the 25 finalists who will compete April 12-14 in Minnesota for $250,000 in cash prizes. Coogler's business, Creo,  is the only finalists from Iowa. Other fin...

Friday, March 23, 2018

Join the JPEC for an Elevator Pitch Competition on April 3 from 3-5 p.m.!

For information on pitch guidelines, structure, and judging criteria, open this document: UNI-E Pitch Competition

To learn more about Paul Singh's Cedar Valley Tech Tour, visit the website. 

All students are welcome to join. Click here to register:



Wednesday, February 07, 2018

The JPEC is now accepting applications for the Okoboji Entrepreneurial Institute. Applications will be accepted until April 2nd.

Link to application:

Monday, January 29, 2018

UNI senior, TJ Nissen, owner of Network Nirvana, a business in the R. J. McElroy Student Business Incubator, was awarded the Grinnell State Bank (GBS) scholarship. The scholarship comes with a dedicated office for his business.

The scholarship and suite was the idea of David Jones and Austin Jones, both UNI alumni and owners of Grinnell State Bank.

Nissen, from Evansdale, Iowa, continually puts his graphic technologies major to use in creating game worlds for Minecraft. Nissen originally started a Network Nirvana club in his early years at UNI. In the club, he and other members tried to sell Recodexer, a gaming manual, at the annual Rod Com, but sales were minimal. Then...

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

College students across the state of Iowa are invited to enter the Pappajohn Student Entrepreneurial Venture Competition for the chance to win $5,000. The regional competition will take place at the local JPEC’s across the state and will continue on to the final round in Des Moines, IA. Students must submit a plan for a start-up business of their choice by midnight on April 2nd and will be judged on the content, concept, and viability of their business idea.

To apply for this competition, one must be a full or part-time undergraduate or graduate student registered for the 2017-18 academic year at any Iowa post-secondary educational institution. Teams of five or fewer members are...

Tuesday, January 02, 2018

Each year, eight students from UNI join 24 other students from The University of Iowa, Iowa State University, Buena Vista University, and Iowa Lakes Community College for OEI held in early August at Lake Okoboji.

The students participate in the advanced study of entrepreneurship including an entrepreneurial simulation; seminars with successful entrepreneurs, business leaders and community leader; and networking. Students find OEI to be one of the most rewarding experiences of their college careers. In addition, three credits are awarded to the students who attend this week-long process to compensate them for the hours put in.





Thursday, December 14, 2017

A UNI senior, who is a member of the JPEC program, won first place at the regional elevator pitch competition held at UNI and advanced onto the National Collegiate Entrepreneurs' Organization (CEO) Conference’s pitch competition from October 26-28 in Tampa, Florida. Kayla Kearns, a communications major from Clear Lake, Iowa, competed for $3,500 at the national competition.

This was Kearns’ second time, representing the UNI JPEC at the National CEO competition. The contestants “pitched” their opportunities in 90-seconds and 120-seconds to panels of judges in three rounds of competition. The final round of six contestants was narrowed to the top three prize winners.

The UN...

Sunday, August 06, 2017

Next time you are in the Waukee area, make sure to eat at Fresh Mediterranean Express and support a UNI JPEC alum!

Monday, April 17, 2017

Three UNI student businesses will be advancing to the state level in the Pappajohn Student Entrepreneurial Venture Competition including AdFLY, Network Nirvana, and LOCAD.

The competition is sponsored by John Pappajohn and Equity Dynamics Inc. and serves as a resource for college students to earn money for their business and practice their pitch. Regional winners receive $500 and have the opportunity to advance to the state level in Des Moines on April 21. At the competition, each student or team is required to provide a 3-5 minute pitch deck about their business, followed by a round of questions. The top three business plans will receive a $5,000 award.

AdFLY was created...