What we do
The Center for Entrepreneurship supports the startup community from pre-seed to early-stage development. Whether you have an idea, a prototype, or your business is already started - we have something for you.
The Center for Entrepreneurship strives to positively impact the university and grow Wichita’s economy by helping students, faculty and community entrepreneurs learn how to develop innovative ideas and guide them toward commercialization and venture creation. We forge strategic partnerships within the business community to work in concert with existing businesses creating sustainability. In these ways, we act as an essential educational and economic driver for Kansas.
Bringing ideas to market
We will help you research, refine and strengthen your concept through cutting-edge design-thinking methods and input from industry partners.
The ignitor accelerator provides a structured support system for community innovators and entrepreneurs, focusing on the ideation pre-seed phase.
Helping your startup thrive
Our expert staff and connections helps launch fledgling businesses and guides them toward profitability
The Shocker New Venture Competition gives students the opportunity to win venture money as well as receive valuable feedback on their idea from industry experts.
Helping your business grow
We can assist with a wide range of support services, from succession planning to organizational assessments and market research
Kansas Family Business Forum
The KFBF brings owners, families, and managers together to address issues and provide support and expertise for every growth cycle of a closely held business.
Growing Rural Businesses
The Growing Rural Businesses program is an eight-week certificate program that provides practical, applied information and examples necessary for rural communities in Kansas.
The Center for Entrepreneurship (CFE) was founded in 1977 by Wichita State University professor Fran Jabara, who decided it was time to change society's image of business people. With his own funds and university support, Jabara created the first program under the Center for Entrepreneurship, a workshop titled “Entrepreneurship: Your Future in Business.”
The Center expanded following the success of the initial workshop. In 1987, with a large donation from local entrepreneur and WSU alum Tom Devlin, a free-standing building was erected on campus to house the Center for Entrepreneurship, making WSU one of the first universities in the world to dedicate a building exclusively to entrepreneurship education. Not long after, academic programs in entrepreneurship were solidified.
The Center for Entrepreneurship serves emerging entrepreneurs from idea to commercialization of their venture. Student engagement programs, such as the Shocker New Venture Competition inspires campus innovation and develops entrepreneurial mindsets. In addition, the Center serves established entrepreneurs each year through community programs, such as Growing Rural Businesses and the Kansas Family Business Forum.
Through Wichita State University's W. Frank Barton School of Business, the Center offers an entrepreneurship major and an entrepreneurship minor for both business and non-business majors.
E-Launch helped entrepreneurs with early stage ideas in discovering their customer and validating value propositions.