The Entrepreneurship Center at Ball State University has provided seven students with funding to develop and advance their entrepreneurial ventures. 

Twice a year, all enrolled students at Ball State are invited to apply for pre-seed grants of up to $2,500 per student, per semester for venture development. This fund was established to help students take their new or established business concepts to the next stage. Funding has historically been used to conduct market surveys, create digital renderings, earn certifications, and more. 

“We had a record-breaking number of applications this semester due to increased marketing efforts of the Pre-Seed Fund,” said Marie Thompson, program coordinator of the Entrepreneurship Center. “We have historically seen students unable to take the next step in their venture development because they personally lack the funding, yet are still too early in the process to seek out a bank loan or angel investors. The Pre-Seed Fund has allowed us to show students that their ideas are marketable and achievable while allowing them to overcome some of those financial obstacles.” 

This semester, seven students have been awarded funds:

• Charlie Agnew
, a senior Entrepreneurship and Innovation major, received funding for his concept, Charlie’s Helping Hands, a local service-based business aimed at helping Muncie residents accomplish tasks around their homes that they might be physically unable to do or may not have the time. This funding will allow him to secure a snowblower to expand his service offerings through the winter months.

• Lucas Gotceitas, a sophomore Criminal Justice and Criminology major, is using the grant to expand his venture, Friggin’ Fishing, which he started with his brother. His business creates lures and bait for fishing. He will use the funding for plastisol, the material used for the lures, and marketing materials.

• Michael Habegger, a freshman Entrepreneurship and Innovation major, received funding for Out The Box Media to take his video production services to the next level. His funding will allow him to upgrade his tripod and develop a website to further market his services.

• Jack Jones, a junior Business Administration major, will use the funding awarded to expand the services offered by his mobile laser tag company, which offers laser tag sets for corporate events and birthday parties.

• Francys King, a General Studies major and student-athlete on Ball State’s softball team, is offering pitching lessons through her venture concept. She has a growing client list and will use the funding to purchase equipment.

• Kortni Minter, a freshman Entrepreneurship and Innovation major, is expanding her business, Lucent Lips, a lip gloss company. Ms. Minter is using the grant to purchase a lip gloss dispenser for trade shows, continue making lip gloss, and a Shopify subscription to sell her goods online.

• Hunter Seagraves, a senior Accounting major, is expanding his successful vintage clothing resale company, Matchbox Clothing. The funding will assist in improving his marketing strategies, purchasing upgraded software, and acquiring shipping equipment to increase his productivity and sales.