Idea Accelerator Opens with a Bang

The ICE Institute welcomed Venture Capitalist Wayne Kimmel to speak at the Idea Accelerator’s Grand Opening. Kimmel works for SeventySix Capital and considers himself to be an “entrepreneur, venture capitalist, philanthropist, tireless networker, sports fan, father of 2, and husband to an amazing wife.” All of these attributes were threaded throughout his presentation. The most important takeaway from the presentation was, “it’s all about the people.” Everything Kimmel talked about came back to the connections he has made and his desire to make more. Kimmel emphasized waking up excited about the job you have each and every day. True to his word Kimmel brought the excitement for his job to the Idea Accelerator. Kimmel stressed one of the easiest ways to always love your job is to pick smart and nice people to work with. Kimmel spoke about the companies he worked with but “more importantly,” he spoke about the individuals he had been involved with.

Most of Kimmel’s advice was centered on making connections. He suggests having a business card that can be used as a way to break the ice with someone. He attends events with his right pocket full of his business cards. At the end of the event he hopes to have an empty right pocket and a left pocket full of new business cards. Kimmel also focused the importance of social media. He suggested looking up the people on the business cards and friending or following them on social media. Kimmel also recommended that everyone create a website about themselves to tell others what they care about. Making connections is important and an online presence is vital to maintaining them.

Kimmel advocated for students receiving as much as education as possible, getting an MBA and a law degree or doctorate. Having a law degree and business degree enables him to be more in control, knowledgeable, and proactive when law and business combine. Kimmel didn’t just highlight education in the classroom but learning about yourself, falling in love, having a boyfriend or girlfriend, and again making connections.

Kimmel urges students with ideas that are seen as crazy or impossible to pursue them because something that hasn’t been done before always seems a little crazy. Being told that it can’t be done means they’re heading in the right direction. Kimmel’s expertise and excitement about creativity was a perfect way to open the Idea Accelerator. Students and staff alike left the space excited about the captivating presentation and the new home of the ICE Institute.