welcome! we have much to talk about (/entrepreneur)

i have a lot to say. in general, about a lot of topics. i will listen, sure (i was raised well!) but i also have a lot to say. so what better to give someone with so much to say their very own blog, right? right. short of giving this former-collegiate-actor a microphone and saying “the stage is yours!” this is pretty fantastic. and while i can chat about many-a-topic (including the always popular weather and sports), i’ll try to keep it to the mission of this (brand new! sparkly! just launched!) blog that we have cheekily called the wolverine of market street.and that mission being: to share the insight, wisdom, triumphs, and stories about the university of michigan innovation community in the bay area.

so hey, i’m jessica henry. i have a lot to say. great to meet you.

through the journey of this blog, i might…

  • talk about entrepreneurship. and the university of michigan. and the center for entrepreneurship at the university of michigan (cfe). because they are my team, and because last year they were kind/crazy/innovative enough to put some eyes and ears on the ground in the bay area (namely: my eyes, my ears).
  • invite you to events we are hosting under the m engage program that i manage (join us at the january 13 unconference in sf!).
  • sprinkle in some personal stories (man, wait until you hear about those crazy times in high school showchoir! you’ll be rofl!)
  • insert a good dose of irreverent pop culture references (btw, i only just recently stopped using “pop” in reference to carbonated beverages; you are forever with me, midwest).
  • address frequently asked questions. like the one i know is catching fire, katness-style:
    • Q – is the title of this blog really an allusion to the memoir-turned-movie about corrupt investing in the 80’s?
    • A – yes. though that is only thanks to a great play on words discovered during a brainstorm session with my colleague sarah during my last visit to a2 (and right before we led our cfe team to a devastating loss at wednesday trivia night at wolverine state brewing co.). you can expect very limited (no) corruption here.
  • upload some shots of what’s happening in-and-around the greater san francisco area (other than 60-ish-degrees all the time, who needs to see that in, oh, january-march?).
  • use a lot of parentheses. because i love the parenthetical. about as much as i am largely indifferent to proper capitalization.
  • talk about entrepreneurship (thought i should circle back there).

ok, so. there you have it. a bit on my mission and purpose, and a pretty accurate example of my gilmore-girls-west-wing narrative cadence. welcome. i’m glad you’re here. now let’s get to it.

so on this first post…let’s talk entrepreneur. and what it is. and who it is.

one day after the university announced a new minor in entrepreneurship that is available to all undergraduates (this is huge news, y’all), here’s why i think this is so cool: because entrepreneurship is agnostic. it’s not just technology. it includes technology, and technology certainly has a large plate at that thanksgiving feast (and certainly supports many of the other industries), but it’s not.just.technology. and i am saying this as an employee of the college of engineering, and as a rent-payer in the tech city known as san francisco. new ideas can come from anyone. the designer. the actor. the doctor. the engineer. the chef. the financier. it is when that designer-actor-doctor-engineer-chef-financier can marry idea + action that he or she can add the coveted /entrepreneur.

designer/entrepreneur. actor/entrepreneur. doctor/entrepreneur. engineer/entrepreneur. my point is that it could be anyone. it could be you. it might be you. it’s you.

one of the coolest things about the bay area is that it is a culture of innovation. it thrives on innovation. it provides resources for innovation. it wants you to innovate. and while it is the mothership of many of the most successful commercial entrepreneurial ventures of recent years, it is also the home of individuals looking to move their ideas into action today. and many of these individuals are michigan alumni. many of whom – but not even close to all of whom! – i have had the pleasure of meeting since i started this gig in april 2014. these alumni are engineers and business professionals. they are also models, writers, coaches, designers, managers, contractors, interns, and freelancers. the common thread: they are moving on their ideas. taking action. they are entrepreneurs.

so to wrap this missive up, here is my point(s):

  • we will talk about entrepreneurship in technology and business. yes. we will also talk about entrepreneurship in retail. in health care. in notforprofit. in education. in energy. if there is an alumnus innovating in the field and i get into his/her orbit – we’ll talk about it on here. think /entrepreneur.
  • if you are an alumnus and you are innovating and you call northern california your home…find me (@UMichJessica for starters!). i am a blackbelt orderer at philz coffee all up and down the 101, and i would love to meet you and hear (and share!) your story with our student and alumni audience. let’s share the gospel of university of michigan innovation with students, and with the world, one tesora at a time.
  • i am pretty proud that i wrapped a jenn-lawrence and a leo-dicaprio reference into that second paragraph and in the same sentence.

welcome. here we go. let’s have some fun.

postscript: this first post is thanks largely to a fantastic two hours spent with a 2011 alumna where we waxed innovative on all things entrepreneurship, innovation, and education. thank you hugely, caroline rooney (see, i told you it would end up on the blog!).

second postscript: i just saw that my wordcount for this is 944-and-counting. that’s 944+ for what was meant to be a very simple, brief welcome/introductory message. i certainly do have a lot to say.