The CEO (Creating Entrepreneurial Opportunities) Program, which began in Effingham, has expanded to dozens of communities in four states. Along with Illinois, the CEO Program is now active in Indiana, Minnesota, and Missouri.
That growth has allowed the planning of the first CEO Network Trade Show. The trade show will be on Monday, June from 4:00-6:30pm at the Keller Convention Center in Effingham. Students from around the CEO network will bring their businesses to Effingham for the showcase.
Craig Lindvahl, executive director of the Midland Institute for Entrepreneurship, which oversees the CEO Program, said it’s time for the program to take that next step. “We’re going to host the first CEO Network Trade Show,” Lindvahl said, “where the best businesses from CEO classes come to Effingham to show off their products and services. It will be a great opportunity to see what young people from around the network are working on.”
While in CEO, students visit area businesses, meet with area professionals, and start their own businesses. CEO students take responsibility for their own work and behavior, and the entire curriculum is designed to provide real world experiences.
Students also launch their own businesses while in CEO. “CEO gives students the opportunity to explore an incredible array of businesses,” says Susan Hanfland, who oversees CEO facilitators in the network, “and through those experiences they build a network of people who can help them professionally and personally.”