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Applications now open -- Next cohort begins in January 2017!


The Entrepreneurship Scholars (E-Scholars) Program has a very specific goal – to grow businesses. Whether that means starting a venture from an idea, or taking a fledgling business to new heights, the program provides ample resources to help individuals launch businesses. E-Scholars is an intensive entrepreneurial development program offered through the University of Missouri-Kansas City’s (UMKC) Regnier Institute for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, designed to provide promising entrepreneurs with the support and resources needed to launch scalable and sustainable ventures.

Participation in the program is open to all in the Kansas City area - students and community.

To date, E-Scholars has helped to launch more than 160 ventures since its first graduating class in 2011, ranging from enterprise software to health care services to consumer products and dozens of others. In the 2014 graduating class, ventures included a locking mechanical device for use in aerospace applications, a guitar accessories venture, and a consumer electronics company which has designed and is selling devices to allow for an integrated home theater or sound experience through use of Bluetooth. More student ventures can be reviewed here.


The program boasts the largest, most extensive network of entrepreneurial mentors in Kansas City. More than 150 accomplished business leaders, serial entrepreneurs, innovators, investors, and founders of globally recognized companies serve as mentors in the program, providing one-on-one consulting and group mentoring sessions. Participants will receive business consulting from industry executives, technical assistance from experts, strategy and marketing assistance from world-class faculty, fundraising guidance from entrepreneurs who have successfully raised funds, and pro-bono legal guidance from top lawyers in the field.

E-Scholars candidates are eligible for using the Entrepreneurial Legal Services Clinic, for securing business incubator office space, and may be connected with investors and potential funding sources.


The primary focus of the E-Scholars Program is the creation of wealth and jobs through scalable, sustainable ventures that have the potential to achieve significant sales and growth in their first years after founding; to date, all E-Scholar ventures have been for-profit enterprises.

Ideal candidates are creative and self-motivated individuals who have the passion and drive to dream and create something new. We support individuals who have a wide variety of goals ranging from starting new businesses, offering a new product or service, creating an innovation, commercializing an invention, and beyond. Candidates must be available to actively participate in all activities and programs.

Participation is open both to university students as well as general community members. University students come from a wide range of disciplines, not just entrepreneurship or business. Community members who have participated in the past have spanned several decades in their ages and career experience, from those only a few years out of high school to those who have worked many years and developed specialized skills and knowledge in certain industries.


Scholarships are available to all accepted applicants and cover the majority of program costs. There is a one-time fee of $500 payable by each venture; this fee will be waived for UMKC students seeking course credit. Because we encourage teams to apply, a single venture may have multiple people participate in the E-Scholars Program for the single one-time fee.


Early application submission will result in a greater chance of acceptance. To apply online, click here.

UMKC students who are accepted into the E-Scholars Program may, if they choose, also earn up to 6 hours of undergraduate or graduate course credit. There is no additional cost to students who pay tuition for these course credits (the $500 one-time fee is waived). Students will work directly with faculty as they complete the E-Scholars Program so the work can apply to their degree requirements. Students from other universities have, in the past, also been able to receive course credit for their participation in E-Scholars which was transferred to their home institutions.


Please contact Bryan at, or 816-235-2794.

This program is funded in part by a generous grant from the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation.