A new program administered by Milwaukee-based Marquette University and funded by the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) has been launched to fund student- and faculty-led entrepreneurial efforts.
The Marquette Enterprise Seed Fund will draw upon WEDC’s Capital Catalyst Program and matching funds raised by Marquette as part of its Strategic Innovation Fund initiative to provide $600k in early-stage capital to support entrepreneurism on campus.
The fund will provide awards of $25k and $50k to up to six projects in each of three competitive application periods, the first of which will occur this fall.
Eligible applicants are Marquette students, faculty and staff who have established a legal business entity. Funding may take the form of a grant or investment depending on the business model and need.
They will be scored based on criteria including its management team, product/service feasibility, potential market size and the viability of its business model.
In addition to financial assistance, recipients will benefit from mentors who will provide expertise in an applicable area of focus. Businesses will meet regularly with their mentors, and attend periodic programming sessions hosted by the Kohler Center for Entrepreneurship.