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Shippensburg launches new business center

New Charles H. Diller Jr. Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership and Innovation part of “entrepreneurial eco-system” at school

Pictured from left are John E. Clinton, president and CEO of the SU Foundation; B. Michael Schaul, chair of the SU Council of Trustees; Charles H. Diller Jr., benefactor; Dr. Barbara G. Lyman, interim president of Shippensburg University; Mike Ross, president of the Franklin County Area Development Corp.; and Dr. John Kooti, dean of the John L. Grove College of Business. - (Photo / Submitted)

It’s a place that teaches Shippensburg University students to cope with risk, spot opportunities and innovate.

That’s what Charles Diller Jr., retired executive vice president from Pennsylvania’s JLG Industries, said as Shippensburg last week named and dedicated a center bearing Diller’s name.

The Charles H. Diller Jr. Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership and Innovation is part of the university’s John L. Grove College of Business. The center will give students a chance to develop entrepreneurial skills and create new businesses, university officials explained.

Diller, also a member of the Grove College of Business advisory board, said in a Shippensburg news release he was drawn to supporting the center because of the opportunity it provides students.

The center is part of an “entrepreneurial eco-system” at the university, along with the Small Business Development Center and the Brad E. Hollinger Stock Trading Room, said interim Shippensburg President Barbara Lyman.

And it allows “business and non-business students the opportunities to be creative and entrepreneurial,” said John Kooti, dean of the Grove College of Business.

Students get an idea, work through a research process, develop a business plan and have their idea vetted by a leadership advisory council, then can pitch their idea to a group of venture capitalists possibly interested in funding their plan, Kooti said.

The center also provides students and local entrepreneurs with access to high-quality speakers and seminars, Shippensburg officials added.

David O'Connor
Dave O'Connor covers York County, manufacturing, higher education, nonprofits, and workforce development. Have a tip or question for him? Email him at [email protected].

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