The entrepreneurs at the Ryffel Center have invented a way to recruit students during TCU Young Entrepreneur Days.
David Minor, director of the Ryffel Center, said the center chose 23 high school students from the state to come to the events. Each student has run a successful business during high school.
“We see these events as a way to attract entrepreneurial students to TCU,” he said. “The kids that came are some of the top entrepreneurs in the state.”
An awards banquet Monday at the Dee J. Kelly Alumni and Visitors Center concluded the events, where six students received $10,000 in scholarships.
The students participated in two days of events, including sessions teaching entrepreneurial strategies aimed at helping the students’ businesses. Ash Huzenlaub, president and CEO of Emergisoft Corp., served as a judge for the events and taught one of the sessions.
“What we’ve basically done is bring in some great young entrepreneurs for two days of brainstorming,” Huzenlaub said. “And we’d love for them all to come to TCU because they’d make the program so much better.”
Will Bennett, a senior from The Woodlands High School near Houston, said he was impressed by what he saw.
“People here show a lot of enthusiasm about what they’re doing,” Bennett said. “They seem very proud of the campus and of the program.”
Students also spent a night on campus Sunday to experience life in a college dorm. Collin Brooks, a senior from Lewisville High School, stayed in Milton Daniel Hall.
“Besides having to sleep on the floor in a sleeping bag half my size, it was great,” Brooks said. “I had pretty cool roommate, so I had a good time.”
The events also included a private dinner at Minor’s home.
“We thought the dinner would be a nice idea to get away from campus,” Minor said. “And my home was a nice place to get the judges and finalists together in an informal setting.”
Ryan Zamarron, a junior from Weatherford High School, said the events convinced him to consider coming to the university.
“I’d never considered TCU before coming here,” Zamarron said. “But, now that I’ve seen the entrepreneurial center and the facilities here, I’m going to.”
Huzenlaub said the students had exceeded his expectations.
“Entrepreneurship is alive and well in the youth of Texas today,” Huzenlaub said.