The Mentor Programs are designed to accelerate student ventures. Our mentors are proven entrepreneurs and accomplished business leaders who share their expertise and wisdom through guidance to entrepreneurs as they build their ventures.

Our mentors commit 10+ hours monthly to work with students in developing sustainable business models that enable the ventures to generate $50,000 in revenues in the near term and earn annual revenues exceeding $1 million by year 5.

The Institute has 33 mentor programs that offer students expertise in a number of industries and functional expertise that can be applied across industries.

Watch student feedback about the mentor programs:


Mentor Programs by Industry:

  • Information Technology

  • Wireless Telecom

  • Consumer Electronics & Accessories

  • Financial Services

  • Real Estate

  • Clean Technology

  • Computer and Software Products

  • Wireless Communication

  • Health Care

  • Media + New Media

  • Entertainment

  • Energy

  • Venture Capital

  • Household-Related Products

  • Games & Toys

  • Investment


Mentor Programs by Functional Expertise:

  • Small Business Management

  • Fundraising Strategy

  • Operations + Production

  • Marketing + Sales

  • Distribution

  • Advertising/Promotion

  • Design-Led Innovation

  • Accounting

  • Web Design

  • Manufacturing

  • Supply Chain + Management

  • Product Development

  • Human Resources

  • Engineering R&D

  • Outsourcing

  • Finance

  • Intellectual Property

Please click here to see our mentors.


In addition to the previously mentioned mentor programs, UMKC also offers the following mentor programs and resources to help entrepreneurs grow their businesses:

  • Entrepreneurial Legal Services Clinic
    Entrepreneurial Legal Clinic Services delivers legal advice and facilitate the delivery of professional business planning to owners of small businesses - both existing and start-ups -- who cannot afford the market rates for such services. UMKC faculty supervise law students as they provide legal and professional services to qualified clients.

  • Missouri Procurement Technical Assistance Center
    The Missouri Procurement Technical Assistance Centers (MO PTAC) assist businesses — including small, disadvantaged and women owned firms — in obtaining federal, state and local government contracts. Their procurement specialists will help you in identifying opportunities and understanding the contracting process so you can take advantage of government sales dollars.

  • Heartland Procurement Technical Assistance Center
    Heartland Procurement Technical Assistance Center (HPTAC) counselors are prepared to assist your business to help you secure government contracts. Through individualized counseling, you will learn how the procurement system can work for you. We will assist in developing a government marketing strategy by identifying which government agencies buy your product/service.

  • UMKC Small Business and Technology Development Center
    The Missouri Small Business Development Centers, a partner with the University of Missouri Extension business development programs, educate individuals to successfully start, run and grow small and entrepreneurial businesses that build a viable economic base, improve lives and enhance communities. The SBTDC provides counseling in topics such as business plan development, financial management, marketing and more. Training programs include start-up, business plans, accounting, cash flow, management and marketing. Information and technology resources include computerized patent, trademark and copyright searches; exporting leads; product design, testing and quality control; manufacturing studies; and plant layout. The SBTDC helps both established businesses and those that are just beginning. The SBTDC is also a leader in creating unique programs that support a particular industry focus.  Artist, Inc., for example is a professional development program for all types of artists wishing to create and grow businesses.

  • UMKC Innovation Center
    From whiteboard to boardroom, the UMKC Innovation Center partners with the university and the community to spark entrepreneurial efforts within our region and across the country. With a suite of high-impact programs, the Center helps emerging and existing business owners, whether they are student, faculty or community-based, hone their business basics, evaluate commercialization opportunities, and connect with the right resources at the right time.

    The Mission of SCORE is to provide resources and expertise to maximize the success of existing and emerging small businesses. SCORE's core purpose is to: Strengthen small business, strengthen local communities and strengthen America by supporting our proud heritage of entrepreneurs seeking opportunities and building success. In both periods of economic strength and during turbulent times, SCORE serves as a network of trusted mentors to help entrepreneurs solve problems and create companies and jobs.

  • KCSourceLink
    KCSourceLink connects a network of more than 140 resource providers in the Kansas City area that offer business-building services for small business success. Its mission is to help small business grow and prosper by providing business owners easy access to needed services. Aspiring and existing business owners are referred to the appropriate resource through the hotline number and Web site.

  • U.S.SourceLink
    U.S.SourceLink evolved from the successful vision and implementation of KCSourceLink, when other areas began adopting the model in 2004. Through U.S.SourceLink, the Innovation Center is implementing similar networks across the country.

  • MOSourceLink
    MOSourceLink connects entrepreneurs and business owners in Missouri to the resources that help them start and grow their businesses. The Innovation Center supports MOSourceLink, a network of some 300 organizations across the state of Missouri that support small business development.

  • UMKC Office of Technology Transfer
    UMKC's Office of Technology Transfer promotes the transfer of technology by assisting UMKC researchers with intellectual property protection and commercialization, through education, advocacy, networking and communication.

  • International Trade Council of Greater KC
    The International Trade Council of Greater Kansas City (ITC) was founded in 1944 under the sponsorship of the late J. C. Nichols as a not-for-profit organization to foster development and expansion of international trade through education and networking. The International Trade Council's primary value to our members and to the business community is developing and conducting trade education programs. The ITC provides modular, self-contained seminars and workshops that address narrowly focused topics.

  • SBIR Western Region
    The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) Office of Technology administers the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Program and the Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Program. Through these two competitive programs, SBA ensures that the nation's small, high-tech, innovative businesses are a significant part of the federal government's research and development efforts. Eleven federal departments participate in the SBIR program; five departments participate in the STTR program awarding $2 billion to small high-tech businesses.

  • Whiteboard to Boardroom
    The Whiteboard to Boardroom (W2B) project was established in September 2009 with three-year funding ($600,000) from the National Science Foundation's Partnerships for Innovation program. W2B is a bi-state partnership of regional colleges and universities that seeks to build on the core values of teaching and learning in our educational institutions to advance discovery and to generate economic benefits derived from commercialization. The program also seeks to develop a sustainable technology commercialization process that will make a vital contribution to the region's economy.

  • University of Missouri Extension
    Using science-based knowledge, University of Missouri Extension engages people to understand change, solve problems and make informed decisions. MU Extension makes university education and information accessible for economic viability, empowered individuals, strong families and communities, and healthy environments.

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