WSU Center for Entrepreneurship Expands Staff and Services

By Meagan Garrett

Entrepreneurial services and other support for students, faculty and staff are being expanded.

The WSU Center for Entrepreneurship in the Carson College of Business has recently launched several key programs and hired a new student venture manager to continue growing entrepreneurial service offerings across the University.

From left, Katherine Brandenstein and Emily Willard, founders of Engage Biotech.

The Center for Entrepreneurship works extensively with other WSU units to encourage a culture of greater student and faculty involvement in innovative, entrepreneurial endeavors. The Center for Entrepreneurship is designed to serve as a place for passionate people to join a project, pursue an idea, or to work on solutions that matter locally and globally.

As one recent example, bioengineering students Emily Willard and Katherine Brandenstein launched their company, Engage Biotech, with mentorship from the Center for Entrepreneurship. Their product is SafeShot, an innovative prototype of a lid that attaches to and sterilizes multi-use vials used to give vaccines and other critical medications throughout the developing world.

Allison Sellers has recently joined the Center for Entrepreneurship as the student venture manager. She will help facilitate the expansion of entrepreneurial growth at WSU through the collaborative design and implementation of the Center for Entrepreneurship’s new, student-facing, entrepreneurship programs launching this year.

In addition, the Center for Entrepreneurship has recently expanded its programs and services to better serve innovative WSU students, faculty, and staff.

“Our goal is to provide entrepreneurial opportunities for every student and faculty member interested in pursuing or participating in an idea,” said Marie Mayes, Center for Entrepreneurship director.

WSU-wide venture creation programs

Center for Entrepreneurship Director Marie Mayes (left) with student entrepreneurs.

For the innovators, entrepreneurs, and those curious about entrepreneurship across WSU, the Center for Entrepreneurship offers a diverse set of programs that focus on venture creation and launch. WSU, in conjunction with Center for Entrepreneurship, recently launched the Amazon Catalyst program. The program fosters faculty and student innovation that will strive to solve real-world problems on a large scale. The Center for Entrepreneurship offers a University-wide Business Plan Competition open to all WSU students. It also provides several events to help students prepare for the Business Plan Competition, including Partnering and Pitches teaming events and a six-week Resource Nights speaker series. The Center for Entrepreneurship also helps facilitate student entrepreneurship clubs and organizations.

Expanded facility connects like-minded students and faculty

The Center for Entrepreneurship moved into the Commons Building in February, beginning the first phase of a campus-wide entrepreneurship facility designed to help students connect with diverse faculty and other innovative students on campus. Additionally, the facility will house the Jones Milestone Accelerator, the Terry Sparks Program, and a mentor connection platform that will enable students to connect with industry experts and community advocates.

For more information, visit the Center for Entrepreneurship, or contact Allison Sellers at 509-335-7876 or