Please visit the calendar of our managing organization, Envision Greater Fond du Lac, to find upcoming programming. Link here.

IGNITE! Youth Entrepreneurship on Tour @ Business Tour Sites & Moraine Park Technical College
Nov 11 @ 8:30 am – 2:00 pm

The IGNITE! Youth Idea Challenge kicks off with an Entrepreneurship on Tour event November 11, 2016.  High school students have the opportunity to tour local business and learn how successful entrepreneurs got their start.  That day long event finishes with a think tank exercise to get everyone thinking of their BIG idea to pitch at the Youth Idea Challenge in March.  The tentative schedule for the Entrepreneurship on Tour event includes:  8:30 AM-11:30 AM tours and travel; 11:30 AM lunch at MPTC; 12:00 PM keynote; 12:30 PM-1:30 PM mini challenge; 1:30 PM Intro to Idea Challenge; 2:00 PM dismissal.

Third Annual Youth Idea Challenge @ Marian University Stayer Center
Apr 18 @ 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm

Eight area high school teams have been selected to pitch their product or service ideas at the third annual IGNITE! Youth Idea Challenge on April 18, 2018 from 6 p.m. – 8 p.m. at the Marian University Stayer Center Auditorium.  The public is invited to attend this exciting “Shark Tank” like event.

Engaging high school students is a focus strategy of IGNITE! Business Success, the go-to resource network of 17 local organizations supporting area entrepreneurs (  Wisconsin has historically ranked in the bottom tier of the Kauffman Index for Start-up Activity; therefore, entrepreneurship education needs to begin early. IGNITE! exposes youth to business experiences through the Youth Idea Challenge, including touring businesses and going through simulations in creative thinking and strategic planning.

Twelve teams were assigned a mentor from the business community to help them refine their idea and submit a short business plan that were judged on creativity, value proposition, and more. Mentor Loree Shady from Hometown Bank has shared, “It is a rewarding experience to share information that I’ve learned from 30 years in business, but it was even more rewarding to gain new knowledge from the students!”

The top 8 teams are moving on to give a 5-minute “pitch” of their idea to a panel of judges or “sharks” at the April 18th event.  Scholarships will be awarded to the top three teams plus other awards.  Teams that have been selected to pitch their ideas in the 2018 IGNITE! Youth Idea Challenge include:

  • Team Chloe – Campbellsport High School
  • The Crossway – Fond du Lac High School
  • MG’s B&B – Campbellsport High School
  • Down in the Groove – STEM Institute
  • C-Ball – Horace Mann High School
  • Team 5G – Laconia High School
  • Escape the Inferno – Waupun Area High School
  • CAM – Campbellsport High School

Help us IGNITE youth idea exploration by attending the Idea Challenge event and by voting for your favorite teams for the Community Choice awards.  RSVP requested by calling 920-322-1887 or email by April 17th.

Startup Fond du Lac Week – Waupun School Visit – Innovation Center and more! @ Waupun Area School District
Nov 7 @ 4:00 pm – 8:00 pm

No RSVP necessary!


Several CTE Departments, Agriculture, Business, Family Consumer Science, and Technology education, will be on display November 7 at Waupun Junior/Senior High School for the public to see. There will be food and fun, and this is a great opportunity to see the skills of what our students are learning for life after high school. One special area of interest is the new Warrior Innovation Center. All night long, Waupun students will be running the equipment for everyone in the public to get an inside look at what they are capable of. We hope that you can find some time to stop down!


This event, part of Startup Fond du Lac, is also held in conjunction with the Regional Innovation Network, an initiative showcasing entrepreneurial opportunities for those within the I-41 Corridor.

Startup Fond du Lac Week takes place on November 5 – 11, 2018, and is designed to connect, educate, and celebrate entrepreneurship in the I-41 Corridor region of Wisconsin. The week’s programming showcases the community’s emerging companies while highlighting the resources and organizations available to foster support for entrepreneurs on their journey. Startup Fond du Lac Week is supported by Envision Greater Fond du Lac and IGNITE! Business Success and is a part of the Startup Wisconsin initiative. To browse all the events and programming occurring during Startup Fond du Lac Week visit:

Startup Wisconsin is committed to advancing and developing Wisconsin’s tech and startup ecosystems through unique programming, collaborative partnerships, and networking. Driven by entrepreneurs and leaders throughout Wisconsin who are passionate about making a difference, and creating a positive and lasting impact that will advance the state’s economy forward.  Startup Wisconsin Week is supported by Advocate Aurora Health, Concordia University Wisconsin, Husch Blackwell, Northwestern Mutual, Accelity Marketing, Headway, Wisconsin Inno and Newsradio 620 WTMJ.