Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership launches new program to assist young startups

Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership launches new program to assist young startups

BUFFALO, N.Y. – Early-stage entrepreneurs can learn how to transform their ideas into a successful business, thanks to a new program in the University at Buffalo School of Management’s Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership (CEL).

The Startup CEL program will provide specialized support and guidance to young, innovation-driven companies as they navigate the complex pathway to commercializing their product, service or technology.

Startup CEL will launch this February in partnership with Ignite, the business development program of the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus (BNMC) Inc., and UB’s New York State Center of Excellence in Bioinformatics and Life Sciences (CBLS).

“At the CEL, we proudly support entrepreneurs as they launch, grow and sustain successful businesses that create jobs and invigorate our regional economy,” says Thomas Ulbrich, assistant dean and executive director of the CEL. “For individuals who are just beginning to take their ideas to market, the Startup CEL program will provide crucial knowledge and strategic insights, as well as a valuable support network of entrepreneurs, to increase their probability for success.”

Using the Disciplined Entrepreneurship framework, the Startup CEL program will offer a comprehensive, integrated and proven step-by-step wp-contentroach to creating innovative, highly successful products. Participants will learn to understand their customer, focus on key market opportunities, overcome obstacles, scale a business and understand and communicate with potential investors.

The BNMC and Ignite will provide workspace at both the Thomas R. Beecher Jr. Innovation Center and at dig, a co-working space designed to help entrepreneurs form, refine and launch their business ideas. In addition, Ignite will provide mentoring, networking and collaboration opportunities, and help identify potential class participants through its relationship with entrepreneurs working at the Innovation Center, dig and other facilities on the medical campus and in the community.

“Startup CEL is a perfect fit with Ignite and is one more step in the BNMC’s goal of cultivating an entrepreneurial ecosystem and a culture of innovation and collaboration in our region, while providing the tools young companies need to develop their ideas into sustainable businesses,” says Vic Nole, director of new business development at BNMC Inc.

“The CBLS is excited to continue our successful collaboration with the CEL through the Startup CEL program, which will enhance our region by preparing innovative entrepreneurs for both the technical and business aspects of launching their companies,” says Amy Schmit, director of management and strategic implementation at CBLS.

Classes will begin on Feb. 11 and run every other week through May. To learn more, contact the CEL at 716-885-5715 or

Established in 1987, the CEL provides participants with individualized and interactive education in entrepreneurship. More than 1,200 CEL alumni employ more than 22,000 Western New Yorkers, and their businesses are worth more than $2 billion to the local economy. For more information, visit

Ignite is the business development program of the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus Inc. and is a self-sustaining social enterprise successfully combining innovation, job creation and urban revitalization. It serves as the umbrella organization of the anchor institutions that make up the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus located within the 120-acre campus bordering Allentown, the Fruit Belt and downtown. The BNMC Inc. fosters conversation and collaboration among its member institutions, its partners and the community to address critical issues impacting them, including entrepreneurship, energy, access and transportation, workforce and procurement, neighborhoods, and healthy communities, with the goal of increasing economic development and building a strong community. Learn more at bnmc-old.local.

The mission of UB’s New York State Center of Excellence in Bioinformatics and Life Sciences is to foster economic development by connecting university resources with life sciences and high-tech industry through funding, research and development support, programming and education, with the goal of helping companies find business solutions, accelerate new ideas and grow. This technology-based economic development mission is complemented by the center’s efforts to support the advancement of new discoveries in science that seek better ways of preventing and managing disease and improving lives. Learn more at

The UB School of Management is recognized for its emphasis on real-world learning, community and economic impact, and the global perspective of its faculty, students and alumni. The school also has been ranked by Bloomberg Businessweek, the Financial Times, Forbes and U.S. News & World Report for the quality of its programs and the return on investment it provides its graduates. For more information about the UB School of Management, visit

Media Contact Information

Matthew Biddle
Assistant Director of Communications
School of Management
Tel: 716-645-5455

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