Cook entrepreneurship center empowers Ivy Tech students in business

April was a busy month at Ivy Tech Community College’s Bloomington campus as students prepared for finals and many prepared for graduation. We also had several important events at the college that demonstrate our support for our students and the community, that were impacted by the pandemic. 

The Ivy Tech Gayle & Bill Cook Center for Entrepreneurship hosted its annual Duke It Out Business Pitch Competition, made possible with financial support from our key sponsor, Duke Energy. Four Ivy Tech students took home prize funding totaling $4,000 for their ideas to end homelessness, launch a food truck business, and two others to solve problems in the shipping industry and financial aid process for students. These are important skills for students to learn to develop an idea, prepare an effective pitch presentation and then present to a panel of judges. The students did an amazing job and will impact our economy in the future. 

Steve Bryant

The Cook Center also hosted its annual Cook Institute for Entrepreneurship luncheon where Bill Oliver provided a fun and informative presentation on the story of the start of Oliver Winery, its growth and recent partnership with a private equity firm helping them rise to one of the largest wineries in the U.S. This is an amazing accomplishment due to the hard work and leadership of the Oliver family and the employees who have made the winery a hit for so many years. We are proud of their success and the wines they produce, in addition to the impact on tourism and the economy of the region.