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Extreme Entrepreneurs Highlight Upcoming Simpkins Seminar

October 16, 2013 - For Eastern Florida State College students and the local community, it’s time to go extreme.

We’re talking about the Extreme Entrepreneurship Tour coming to the King Center for the Performing Arts on the college's Melbourne campus where anyone can gain important insights into how to start their own business.

The Nov. 14 event is part of the B.W. Simpkins Business Seminar for Entrepreneurial Development series that has brought some of the nation’s leading businessmen and women to the college. It lasts from 1 to 5 pm and see below for a link to online registration.

Normally, the speaker will discuss his or her road to success and interact with students. The Extreme Tour will offer that and much more.

It will feature speakers and workshops, all tailored to provide information for students and local residents interested in using their ideas and drive to create what could become the next Apple or Google.

Among the headline speakers are Michael Simmons and Chad French. When Simmons was just 16 years old he co-founded his first business, Princeton WebSolutions, which was later named the number one youth-run web development company in the nation by YouthBiz Magazine. Simmons is also co-author of "The Student Success Manifesto."

French is a high school dropout turned computer programmer who started PeerFly, a fast-growing sales and marketing agency. The company's main claim to fame is the online affiliate marketing tool, which French built using his Windows Notepad and having zero dollars in his pocket.

Simmons and French will talk about the lessons they've learned as young entrepreneurs, the importance of networking and the secret to finding the funding to get a businesses launched.

There will also be interactive panel discussions featuring the keynote speakers plus EFSC student entrepreneurs and local business owners, along with music and a chance to receive more than $300 in prizes. Current EFSC students can apply to have their business plan evaluated during the tour appearance with the application due by October 29.

“It’s a high-energy day that provides students a wealth of valuable information,” said Dr. Pat Fuller, a business and economics professor who directs the college’s entrepreneur programs.

“Hearing from young, successful entrepreneurs is what makes this tour unique. If you have any desire to start your own business, this is the place to be.”

The event, which runs from 1 to 5 p.m. at the King Center, coincides with the recent launch of Eastern Florida’s first two Bachelor Degrees in General Business Management and Health Care Management.

Students enrolled in those programs can utilize the session to get additional knowledge into the business world, Fuller said.

Students taking courses in the college’s Business Entrepreneurship Academic Program also should attend. The program was named the best emerging program by the national Association for Community College Entrepreneurship in 2010. Students may earn certificates at two levels of expertise, receive an Associate’s Degree that can transfer to an advance entrepreneurial program, or simply specialize in the skills they need to start their own business.

The free event is also open to the public.

You can pre-register for the Extreme Entrepreneurship Tour online or walk-in registration is welcome on the day of the event.