I vividly remember my first Collegiate Entrepreneurs’ Organization (CEO) conference. It was a brisk November in Chicago about seven years ago, and I was so thrilled to have motivated 26 University of Tampa entrepreneurs to participate in what I was sure would be a life changing experience. We expected nearly 100 successful entrepreneurs who would inspire and motivate the audience, a pitch competition, and networking sessions. Yet, we were most excited to meet thousands of other like-minded students. At this conference, we wouldn’t be seen as round pegs that didn’t fit into a square hole. No, here we would be celebrated! I had the pleasure and opportunity of introducing Jeff Hoffman, the founder of priceline.com. For the first time ever, I addressed an audience of 1,500 attendees. I came away from the conference with more confidence and inspiration that was invaluable to my growth. If you had asked me in 2012 if I would one day be running the global operation that is CEO, I likely would’ve told you that it would be my dream job. But I get to live this every day! I am telling you this because I want to give you a glimpse of the impact CEO has had on me, as well as the student entrepreneurial ecosystem, and the importance of supporting its members.
CEO is more than an organization that hosts a global conference, five regional events, and 250 chapters internationally. Here, we have the opportunity to shape tomorrows entrepreneur to be socially responsible, aggressive in venture and thoughtful in leadership. Last year, via the conference and membership model, incorporating hundreds of mentor and volunteer hours, CEO touched the lives of more than 16,000 students.
Today, we exist to inform, support, and inspire college students to be more entrepreneurial by creating ventures. Over the past two years, we’ve been working internally to strengthen the organization and stabilize our operation. In this positive growth stage, we are ready to expand our reach and support more students and colleges than ever.
I am contacting you today to consider a contribution to Collegiate Entrepreneurs’ Organization. I believe in our mission and in the power of a network. A gift of any size can help us reach our goal of supporting chapters at over 400 different universities globally. The larger our chapter base, the more entrepreneurs we can create and support. By supporting CEO, you are directly impacting the future. Steve Jobs once said, “I want to make a ding in the universe.” Help our students become the next generation of entrepreneurial leaders.
You can make change happen.
Collegiate Entrepreneurs' Organization, Inc. is a 501 (c) 3 not-for-profit charitable organization