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First Wednesdays

First Wednesdays Events

Featuring the Entrepreneur Hall of Fame Speaker Series & the Roo Idea Jump Competitions

On the first Wednesday of each month during the academic year, The Regnier Institute hosts special events designed to bring students and community members together and to inspire Bloch students to launch new ventures. These special events include inspirational stories from inductees of the Entrepreneur Hall of Fame and at the end of each semester culminate in a student venture feasibility plan and pitch competition. The evenings end in pizza and networking.

When: 5:00-6:30 pm
Where: UMKC Bloch Executive Hall, 218


Upcoming Events

A Conversation with Annie Hurlbut ZanderJoin us for A Conversation with Annie Hurlbut Zander

Hear first-hand how co-founder and CEO of Tonganoxie-based Peruvian Connection, was inspired halfway across the world and founded a luxury artisan apparel company, which releases five internationally renowned collections per year and that has retail locations throughout the U.S. and the U.K.

When: Wednesday, April 5, 2017, from 5-6:30 pm

Who: Entrepreneur Hall of Fame inductee, Annie Hurlbut Zander, CEO and co-founder of Peruvian Connection

Annie Hurlbut Zander
Peruvian Connection

CEO and co-founder of Peruvian Connection, an apparel company based on ethnographic and historical textile inspiration, Annie Hurlbut Zander found her entrepreneurial passion while visiting South America as an anthropology student at Yale. For the last 40 years, Peruvian Connection has grown from a 19-year-old’s love of woven textiles into a thriving direct-marketing business, releasing five internationally renowned collections a year through catalogs, online and in the brand’s retail stores across the U.S. and in the U.K.


Compete in the Roo Idea Jump and win up to $3,000 in prizes!

What: The Roo Idea Jump is a feasibility competition for UMKC students. Students enter business plans to compete for a coveted slot in the finals where venture teams pitch their idea to an esteemed panel of judges for a chance to with cash to start their ventures.

When: Wednesday, May 3, 2017 at 5:00 pm in UMKC Bloch Executive Hall, 218

Who can compete?: The competition is open to current full and part-time UMKC students with ideas for new ventures in the concept or seed stage. Individuals may submit a concept; however, entrepreneurship teams are encouraged. Teams should not exceed 6 people.

Who can attend?: We encourage all students participating to invite guests, friends, family and classmates to attend! The audience vote is factored into deciding the winner, so it’s in the best interest of the competing ventures to fill the audience with their supporters.


Friday, April 7

Registration Deadline
(100–word description)

Friday, April 21

Final submission due

Tuesday, April 25

Finalists announced

Monday, May 1

Finalists meeting

Tuesday, May 2

Finalists’ presentations due for review

Wednesday, May 3

Finalists’ presentations due