for Innovation and Entrepreneurship
at Davidson College

for Innovation and Entrepreneurship
at Davidson College

Access to Capital Alum Article Startup Student Try It Fund

Purposeful Serendipity Launches Alec Stimac ’23 into his Entrepreneurial Journey

“Little did I know that being a part of the Hurt Hub@Davidson would transform my career trajectory and creativity,” noted Alec Stimac, a recent Davidson College graduate of the class of 2023 who studied International Relations, Economics, and Chinese Studies, when explaining his initial experience with the Hurt Hub@Davidson community.  

Alec first became involved in Hurt Hub@Davidson opportunities when he met Joe Ricci, a coworking space member, to receive mentorship on life goals. That first engagement with the space led Alec to transform his career trajectory and creativity. He sparked an interest in entrepreneurship, and from there, began to involve himself in a number of Hurt Hub@Davidson events, programs, and trips. Eventually, he started and built his own startup, Ingot, a social justice network that aims to enable “youth and nonprofits to challenge the way they think about global issues, collaborate with other passionate people in their area, gain mentorship from users domestically and abroad.” This amazing opportunity and idea developed through the help of the Hurt Hub@Davidson’s partnerships with companies and organizations. Specifically 1MillionCups, a weekly event where entrepreneurs can meet and present their startups, and LaunchCLT, a mentorship program, which provides expertise and knowledge for entrepreneurs. These endless possibilities allowed Alec to expand his knowledge outside the classroom, and gain a greater appreciation for the Charlotte area, and the offerings of its ecosystem and people. With his company, Ingot, and mentorship, Alec participated in the Hurt Hub@Davidson’s Nisbet Venture Fund pitch competition and shared his commitment to social issues and impact with the extensive community.

Alec identified the Hurt Hub@Davidson as an integral part of his college experience. “I could not imagine where I would be today if it were not for the Hurt Hub and the amazing team that works there.” He also noted the physical aspect of the space, loving its “good energy and smiles” that made it magnetic to return back – whether it be working on his startup, meeting people, or just studying. To Alec, the Hurt Hub@Davidson “was not just a coworking space, but a home away from home just across Main Street.”

Click here to learn more about opportunities for students and young entrepreneurs here at the Hurt Hub@Davidson.

Access to Capital Article Gig-Hub Innovation Week Student

Lily Korir

If there’s anyone who is a champion of the Hurt Hub@Davidson, it’s Lily Korir. Lily Korir is a recent Davidson College graduate of the class of 2023, a Computer Science and Applied Physics major, and a participant in a variety of programs offered here. 

Lily began her journey here as a part of our Gig-Hub Consultant Program. This program allows students to gain real-world experience in the professional world by partnering with a number of small businesses and start-ups. For her first gig, Lily worked for Wellzesta, a computer software company that focuses on wellness software for the senior living industry, as a market research consultant. Using and becoming proficient in HubSpot, as well as composing weekly presentations helped her refine her presentation and communication skills. For her second gig, Lily worked under an independent entrepreneur, where she helped automate data using various customer relationship management software(CRMs) such as Zappier and Zoho. “From these experiences, I got exposure to technologies and skills I would have otherwise not had in college.”

By then, Lily’s accomplishments had just begun. She participated in Innovation Weekend hosted by TechStars. This experience allowed Lily to think fast on her feet and learn how to pitch ideas in a short period of time. During this time, she actually pitched a version of her company, Mulik Dairy Solutions Limited, which eventually won the Nisbet Venture Fund at the Hurt Hub@Davidson. 

Lily’s company, Mulik Dairy Solutions Limited aims to “revolutionize small-scale dairy farming in Kenya by providing small-scale farmers with direct access to quality dairy farming inputs and competitive markets.” The Nisbet Venture, specifically on the Acceleration Track, awarded Lily with a $25,000 equity investment as well as opportunities for further education and mentorship. “My mentor has become a very crucial part of my venture and has helped me think of my venture from different perspectives and get better prepared.” Through the Nisbet Venture Fund, Lily was able to turn her business dreams into a reality. 

I asked Lily one last question, “what are some pieces of advice or suggestions you have for Davidson students looking to get into entrepreneurship?” She emphasized the importance of mentorship, specifically through the Davidson Alumni Network, as students can meet alumni or fellow entrepreneurs who can provide them with a comprehensive view of their chosen industry. These experiences through the Hurt Hub@Davidson provided Lily with exposure to a variety of technologies and skills that are extremely important both in and outside the classroom. 

Click the link below to learn more about the opportunities and access to capital provided to Davidson College students. 

Article Education Innovation Testimonial

How Mike Faubert Inspires Others

Photo courtesy of Chris Record

Since college, Mike Faubert has been drawn to working in sales, particularly noting its plentiful opportunities to meet and connect with a variety of people. From there, Mike worked for Hampton Products, which has now expanded to manufacturing security hardware and smart home products. He learned many valuable lessons about consumer product marketing, perhaps most importantly how to make your product stand out in the market. During this time, under the guidance of the company president, Mike remained a part of Hampton Products for 22 years.

Mike first learned about the HurtHub@Davidson through LaunchCLT, of which he is still an active mentor, during the recovery from the pandemic. LaunchCLT aims to provide expertise and share knowledge for entrepreneurs, to which he was able to collaborate and advise on consumer product topics. Currently, the Hurt Hub@Davidson has provided structured mentorship to 35 ventures, by nearly 60 mentors within the organization. After first becoming connected with LaunchCLT, he was asked to lead the first Co-Starters program, which is a 10-week class that teaches the process and details of starting and running a successful business. Now, Mike continues to work as a trained facilitator, providing professional advice and guidance to those looking to launch their business.

During the academic year, Mike provides mentorship to students enrolled in the WRI 270, “A Bit About Me,” instructed by Professor Steve Kaliski from the Theater department. Once a week for an hour, he answers any and all questions his mentees might have and helps them transform their interests into the professional world. “It feels good to be able to provide guidance to those who may not have had the same experiences that I have had,” he says. 

In the past year, the Hurt Hub@Davidson has provided mentorship to 43 ventures, 13 Davidson alumni, and 14 current Davidson students or alumni ventures, all by 78 mentors in the community. Mentorship is an integral part of entrepreneurship and success for the Hurt Hub@Davidson, and we are excited to continue and expand our mentorship programs in the future. Click here to learn more about mentorship opportunities available at the Hurt Hub@Davidson.

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Innovation and Entrepreneurship at Davidson College


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