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EU business faculty receive $5,000 grant to develop entrepreneurship course

Published on May 20, 2014 by Valorie Coleman

Collaboration with “1 Million Cups” program


SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – Beginning next spring, Evangel University will offer a new semester-long course for students involved in the 1 Million Cups entrepreneurial program, which launched in Springfield this spring.

Thanks to a $5,000 grant from the Acton Institute for the Study of Religion and Liberty, business faculty members Eveline Lewis and Hona Amer are developing the new three-credit course.

“The Acton Grant will fund the design, implementation and assessment of a course that will engage Evangel students in the weekly 1 Million Cups entrepreneurial presentations,” said Bernie Dana, chair of the department of business at Evangel.

“Next summer, Lewis and Amer will publish the design and outcomes, so the course can be replicated by universities in the 37 other cities where 1 Million Cups is operating,” he said.

Linking virtue and economic thinking

Lewis and Amer attended the launch of the 1 Million Cups program and became interested in exploring how to use it as part of a learning process for Evangel’s students. Lewis is the coordinator for Evangel’s nonprofit business and social enterprise major and the related Vetter Center for Social Enterprise.

“Our teaching about social enterprise is rooted in entrepreneurship,” said Lewis.

Amer’s interest flows from her work as a teacher and marketing consultant for entrepreneurial organizations.

“We heard about the Acton Institute’s grant program and saw it as an opportunity to help develop this entrepreneurship course as part of our faith-based curriculum,” Amer said.

As recipients of the Acton Grant, Lewis and Amer will also receive an all-expense-paid trip to attend the eighth annual Free Market Forum in Indianapolis, Ind., in October 2014. The forum is hosted by Hillsdale College and will be attended by more than 150 faculty members from across North America.

The Acton Institute for the Study of Religion and Liberty is based in Grand Rapids, Mich.

The institute holds seminars and publishes books, monographs, periodicals and articles designed to educate religious leaders, business executives, entrepreneurs, university professors and academic researchers in economics principles and in the connection that can exist between virtue and economic thinking.

About 1 Million Cups

1 Million Cups was founded by Kauffman Labs for Enterprise Creation at the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation in Kansas City, Mo.

The 1 Million Cups program model is consistent in each community.

Each Wednesday morning, two early-stage startups present their companies to an audience of mentors, advisors and other entrepreneurs. Each founder presents for six minutes and then fields audience questions for another 20 minutes.

Springfield entrepreneurs, funders and other interested community members meet at 9 a.m. each Wednesday in the Robert Plaster Center for Entrepreneurship, 425 South Jefferson.

About Evangel Business Department

The Evangel University Business Department offers majors in accounting, business education, finance, marketing, management, nonprofit business and social enterprise and professional selling.

The business department also provides degree completion in management and a Master of Organizational Leadership in both online and classroom formats.

For more information, contact Bernie Dana at (417) 865-2811, ext. 8116.