State's Collegiate Business Plan Competition sees record number of entries

Entrepreneurism is alive and well in the state’s college community, as the West Virginia Statewide Collegiate Business Plan Competition received a record 115 entries from 10 different institutions of higher education prior to the entry deadline. This academic year’s competition will see 40 teams in the new Hospitality & Tourism category and 75 teams in the Lifestyle & Innovation category, with one winning team from each category awarded a $10,000 prize in the spring.

Mindy Walls, Director of the West Virginia University Entrepreneurship Center, which hosts the West Virginia Statewide Collegiate Business Plan Competition, said the number of entries this year represents a substantial increase over the number of entries in 2009.

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2009 poverty rate increases less for West Virginia than for U.S.

According to the newly released American Community Survey numbers, West Virginia does not see a significant increase in its poverty rate between 2008 and 2009. The national poverty rate does show a significant increase, however, from 13.3 percent to 14.3 percent. West Virginia’s poverty rate increased slightly from 17.1 percent to 17.7 percent, an increase that is not considered statistically significant.

Overall, data show the two economies are still feeling the lingering effect of the recession that started at the end of 2007. Between 2008 and 2009, the state’s unemployment rose by two percentage points from 5.7 percent to 7.7 percent, and the share of employed workforce dropped by 1.5 percent from 48.4 percent to 46.9 percent.

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Accounting firm donates $15,000 to WVU program

Dixon Hughes, PLLC, has given the WVU College of Business and Economics $15,000 to support faculty and student development.

The gift, for the College’s Division of Accounting, was presented during the division’s Professionalism Week at the end of August.

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Collegiate entrepreneurs ready to win one of two $10,000 prizes

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West Virginia’s collegiate entrepreneurs have until September 28 at noon to enter a competition that will award two $10,000 prizes, as the West Virginia Statewide Collegiate Business Plan Competition begins its fifth year. A cash prize is awarded to the top entrepreneur in each of two categories in a competition that will now feature the state’s second-largest industry — hospitality and tourism.

“The Statewide Collegiate Business Plan Competition provides a platform for students to turn great business ideas into real, West Virginia businesses,” said Governor Joe Manchin. “The competition helps these students cultivate their ideas, and that is the true spirit of entrepreneurism. Helping to create and grow businesses in West Virginia is a critical component of the state economy.”

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Annual Business Summit includes WVU representation

Presenters from West Virginia University addressed economic issues relevant to the state and to the world at the West Virginia Chamber of Commerce’s 74th Annual Meeting and Business Summit September 1-3 at The Greenbrier.

A Generation West Virginia panel on September 1 featured West Virginia University College of Business and Economics economist Russell S. Sobel on the subject of “Reality Check—What West Virginia Needs for the Next Generation of Job Seekers.” Sobel also spoke the next day on accelerating job creation in the state.

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