University of Northern Iowa

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R. J. McElroy Student Business Incubator

SBI Panorama

The R. J. McElroy Student Business Incubator, a program of the UNI John Pappajohn Entrepreneurial Center, is an educational learning laboratory designed to inspire and educate students interested in entrepreneurship and small business. The SBI program was originally funded by the Small Business Administration and private donors. Currently the SBI is funded by the R. J. McElroy Trust. These funds allow student business owners to explore business ideas with the assistance of JPEC staff, entrepreneurs-in-residence, and other professionals. Current UNI students and teams of students are eligible to apply. Students from other area colleges and high schools will also be considered. Students are admitted on a semester basis and must demonstrate adequate progress to remain in the program.

PresentationThere are three types of incubation in the SBI — physical (full) incubation, co-working, and affiliate incubation. Students involved in full incubation receive a suite in the JPEC’s facility located in the Business and Community Services building on the UNI campus. Student admitted to the co-working program receive access to the co-working space in the JPEC facility. Full incubation and co-working admission provides 24/7 access to the secure facility. Students in the affiliate program may not be ready to occupy physical space in the incubator or the nature of the business may not warrant physical space. Affiliate businesses will receive all of the services except physical space and 24/7 access. All students are required to participate in programs designed to increase the chances for entrepreneurial success. Students will graduate from the program equipped with the skills and experience necessary to create a positive influence on the Iowa economy and beyond.

How To Apply To The Student Business Incubator Program

The first step to being considered for the R. J. McElroy Student Business Incubator program is to study this presentation on business opportunity development and incubation. After submitting the quiz, you will have access to the application for the SBI program.

For more information on the SBI, call the JPEC at 319-273-JPEC (5732) or email jpec@uni.edu.