CobraVenture: Put your business ideas into action.
- Network with students who also want to be their own boss.
- Build your business plan with helpful workshops.
- Learn from local entrepreneurs.
- Take the chance to pitch your business plan to area leaders.
- This no-cost program gives each cohort student a chance to win:
- $3,000 in seed money for your business (the Murray Wise Student Entrepreneur of the Year Prize).
- $250 to $1,500 in seed money (donated by local entrepreneurs).
- Cohorts start in January and conclude with the Pitch Showcase in May.
CobraVenture is a student-entrepreneur cohort for current Parkland College students who want to start their own business while still in enrolled in college. Students can be part of any academic program, but the thread that ties them together is the desire to take their idea from concept to commerce. For the 2023 cohort, students can earn "seed-money" awards up to $3,000 for their business through participation in the CobraVenture Pitch Showcase in May.
The cohort model provides for a close-knit group to embark on the process together, through a series of workshops on topics important to getting their businesses started. Led by a facilitator, workshop topics are presented by Parkland faculty, business leaders, and alumni. Students do not receive academic credit for participation, but rather real-world skills that enhance what they have learned in the classroom. Participation is free but requires a high level of dedication. Workshops will be held on Thursday evenings during the spring semester.
CobraVenture is a collaboration of the Office of the Vice President of Communications and External Affairs, Parkland College Community Education, and the Parkland Foundation.
All Thursday Workshops will be held from 6 to 8 pm in the Parkland College Community Education Building, 1315 North Mattis Ave, Champaign, IL 61821.
This schedule could be interrupted due to Covid or winter weather. We will communicate changes as soon as we know anything.
Cohort Onboarding Session – Thursday January, 12
Defining Your Business – Thursday, January 26
What Are You Selling? – Thursday, February 2
Who Is Your Customer? – Thursday, February 16
Developing a Marketing Plan – Thursday, March 9
Legal Organization and Management – Thursday, March 30
Financial Management – Thursday, April 13
Executive Summary – Thursday, April 27
Pitch Prep and Practice Session* – Monday, May 15
CobraVenture Pitch Showcase* – Monday, May 22
*The Pitch Prep and Practice Session and the Pitch Showcase will be held in the Parkland College Student Union.