Carnegie Mellon University
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CONNECTS

Our CONNECTS seminar series enhances the experiential education of any individual interested in innovation and entrepreneurship. Tailored mainly for students to help take their ideas from conception to commercialization, the seminars run throughout the academic year. Teams looking for talent and talent looking for teams can CONNECT at these events.

All CONNECTS events will be hosted in-person at the Swartz Center for Entrepreneurship, Tepper Quad, 3rd Level. A virtually option will also be available.

Advanced registration is required. Zoom information will be sent the day before the event to all registered attendees. Please note that the session will be recorded.

Join the CMU Entrepreneurship Slack to connect with fellow entrepreneurs

Customer Enchantment through Design Thinking

Tuesday, September 13, 2022
12:30 – 1:30 p.m. EST
In Person: Swartz Center for Entrepreneurship, 3rd Level, Tepper Quad/Virtual: Zoom will be sent the day before event
Presenter: Brad Eiben, Carnegie Mellon University

Register

Check back for more information.


Investment Banking

Wednesday, September 14, 2022
12:30 – 1:30 p.m. EST
In Person: Swartz Center for Entrepreneurship, 3rd Level, Tepper Quad/Virtual: Zoom will be sent the day before event
Presenter: Cowen

Register

Check back for more information.


How to Know That You are Ready for an Investment

Tuesday, September 20, 2022
12:30 – 1:30 p.m. EST
In Person: Swartz Center for Entrepreneurship, 3rd Level, Tepper Quad/Virtual: Zoom will be sent the day before event
Presenter: Christine S. Ferguson-Rau, Ferguson Financial Consulting

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Learn a checklist that will help you decide if you are ready to raise capital for your startup.


Customer Discovery: Is My Idea a Good One?

Thursday, September 22, 2022
12:30 – 1:30 p.m. EST
In Person: Swartz Center for Entrepreneurship, 3rd Level, Tepper Quad/Virtual: Zoom will be sent the day before event
Presenter: Kit Needham, Swartz Center for Entrepreneurship

Register

Have an idea or a technology that you think solves a big problem? Before you start building your product, learn how to correctly do “customer discovery” so you create a solution that customers will want and pay for. Saves time, prevents unnecessary pivots, and sets the stage for your first pilot.


Business Model Canvas: A Practical Guide

Tuesday, September 27, 2022
12:30 p.m. - 1:30 p.m. EST
In Person: Swartz Center for Entrepreneurship, 3rd Level, Tepper Quad/Virtual: Zoom will be sent the day before event
Presenter: Craig Markovitz, CMU Swartz Center

Register

Many aspiring entrepreneurs have heard of the business model canvas, but few actually use it correctly. This workshop will focus on the proper techniques to leverage the full value of this important tool for business planning and validation.


Entrepreneurship Through Acquisition

Wednesday, September 28, 2022
12:30 – 1:30 p.m. EST
In Person: Swartz Center for Entrepreneurship, 3rd Level, Tepper Quad/Virtual: Zoom will be sent the day before event
Presenter: Len Caric, Carnegie Mellon University

Register

Why interview for a job when you can be the CEO of your own company after graduation? No ideas for a business? No problem, acquire an existing business and be in control of your future.


Using Digital to Achieve Business Goals

Thursday, September 29, 2022
12:30 p.m. - 1:30 p.m EST
In Person: Swartz Center for Entrepreneurship, 3rd Level, Tepper Quad/Virtual: Zoom will be sent the day before event
Presenter: Laura Kelly, Dick’s Sporting Goods

Register

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The Lean Startup

Tuesday, October 4, 2022
12:30 p.m. - 1:30 p.m. EST
In Person: Swartz Center for Entrepreneurship, 3rd Level, Tepper Quad/Virtual: Zoom will be sent the day before event
Presenter: Dave Mawhinney, CMU Swartz Center

Register

The Lean Startup is a technical approach to generating and managing startups, helping to get an anticipated product or service into the hands of customers faster. Learn how to make your startup lean and efficient using entrepreneurial best practices in this seminar.


Cryptocurrency

Wednesday, October 5, 2022
12:30 – 1:30 p.m. EST
In Person: Swartz Center for Entrepreneurship, 3rd Level, Tepper Quad/Virtual: Zoom will be sent the day before event
Presenter: Cowen

Register

Check back for more information.


Keys to Building a Successful & Sellable Startup: Cashflow Forecasting & Digital Organization

Thursday, October 6, 2022
12:30 p.m. – 1:30 p.m. EST
In Person: Swartz Center for Entrepreneurship, 3rd Level, Tepper Quad/Virtual: Zoom will be sent the day before event
Presenter: Kelley Lynch, CFO & VP of Operations, Othot

Register

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Show Me the Money

Wednesday, October 12, 2022
12:30 – 1:30 p.m. EST
In Person: Swartz Center for Entrepreneurship, 3rd Level, Tepper Quad/Virtual: Zoom will be sent the day before event
Presenter: Matt Kirmayer, Perkins Coie

Register

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To Trust or Not to Trust: What Every Startup Needs to Know about Privacy and Cybersecurity

Tuesday, October 25, 2022
12:30 p.m. - 1:30 p.m. EST
In Person: Swartz Center for Entrepreneurship, 3rd Level, Tepper Quad/Virtual: Zoom will be sent the day before event
Presenter: John Funge, DataTribe

Register

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Splitting the Founder’s Pie & Other Aspects of Equity Compensation

Wednesday, October 26, 2022
12:30 – 1:30 p.m. EST
In Person: Swartz Center for Entrepreneurship, 3rd Level, Tepper Quad/Virtual: Zoom will be sent the day before event
Presenter: Frank Demmler, Startup Whisperer, 2 X Frank Entrepreneurial Yoda-for-Hire

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Equity compensation can be a very mysterious concept for first-time entrepreneurs. Learn how to make critical decisions from the division of the Founders' Pie through stock option grants.


Financial Modeling


Thursday, November 1, 2022
12:30 p.m. – 2:00 p.m. EST
In Person: Swartz Center for Entrepreneurship, 3rd Level, Tepper Quad/Virtual: Zoom will be sent the day before event
Presenter: Phil Compton, Locomation

Register

If you’re going to start a company, mapping out your financial projections will be an important part of that process. Learn the basics and gain insight on how to incorporate assumptions and flexibility into a model. Understand and be able to discuss key terms such as burn rate, cash runway and EBITDA which will allow you to more confidently support projections to your investors, Board and fellow team members. Includes both a financial model template and a user-friendly simple cap table.


Early Stage Fundraising from Silicon Valley Investors: Terminology, Milestones, Expectations

Wednesday, November 2, 2022
12:30 p.m. - 1:30 p.m. EST
In Person: Swartz Center for Entrepreneurship, 3rd Level, Tepper Quad/Virtual: Zoom will be sent the day before event
Presenter: Kelly Coyne, Chalet
Please Note: Speaker will be virtual for this event

Register

Check back for more information.


Launching Hardware Startups with Monozukuri, The Art of Making Things in a Creative Way

Thursday, November 3, 2022
12:30 p.m. – 1:30 p.m. EST
In Person: Swartz Center for Entrepreneurship, 3rd Level, Tepper Quad/Virtual: Zoom will be sent the day before event
Presenter: Nobuhiro Seki, Monozukuri Ventures

Register

Hardware is no longer hard: Manufacturing in a Japanese way has become more accessible for startups, especially when it comes to low-volume production with good quality. Come learn how you can get started!


Creating a Successful Video Pitch

Tuesday, November 8, 2022
12:30 p.m. - 1:30 p.m. EST
In Person: Swartz Center for Entrepreneurship, 3rd Level, Tepper Quad/Virtual: Zoom will be sent the day before event
Presenter: Brian Staszel, Carnegie Mellon University

Register

Is your video pitch effective for competing in an online business competition for entrepreneurs? Learn how to create a successful video and capture the attention of venture capitalists.
If you are planning to participate in the McGinnis Venture Competition, your first video pitch will determine if you advance to the second round.


Pitching Innovation to the C-Suite


Wednesday, November 9, 2022
12:30 p.m. - 1:30 p.m. EST
In Person: Swartz Center for Entrepreneurship, 3rd Level, Tepper Quad/Virtual: Zoom will be sent the day before event
Presenter: Melissa Murphy, Carnegie Mellon University

Register

One of the most common complaints of corporate entrepreneurs is being blindsided by questions from outside their areas of expertise. Even well-prepared corporate entrepreneurs have higher-stakes conversations than traditional startup CEOs with stakeholders coming from narrower perspectives.

Before pitching the idea, think about it from the perspective of the functional areas of leadership in the C-Suite. Through what lenses will the most powerful decision-makers in the company view new ideas?

Join us for a lively discussion about better ways to prepare for pitching innovation to the C-Suite, the much higher communications burden placed on intrapreneurs in the early days of innovation and how to better leverage tools such as the Pitching Innovation to the C-Suite Canvas.


Agile Product Development

Tuesday, November 15, 2022
12:30 p.m. - 1:30 p.m. EST
In Person: Swartz Center for Entrepreneurship, 3rd Level, Tepper Quad/Virtual: Zoom will be sent the day before event
Presenter: Sean Ammirati, Birchmire Ventures

Register

Learn an iterative and interactive framework to manage the process of building your startup's technology solution. Master specific tips for implementing this framework in your venture and hear case studies from local Pittsburgh companies who have taken advantage of these techniques.

Upcoming CONNECTS Events

Laurie Barkman
connects audience
Alison Alvarez



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