Editor’s note: Thom Ruhe is CEO and President of the NC IDEA Foundation.

DURHAM – How did you spend National Entrepreneurship Week?

Not to be confused with Global Entrepreneurship Week (GEW) which this year will be the week of November 16th, National Entrepreneurship Week is a congressionally chartered initiative founded in 2006 – and a good excuse early in the calendar year to focus on entrepreneurship priorities.

For our part, we turned the spotlight on rural economic development efforts with our own Rural NC Place-Based Entrepreneurship Roundtable, held at Impact Alamance, in Burlington, NC. We had great conversations around co-working, incubators and accelerators; specifically, why, when, and how communities might consider these tools. Beyond the great speakers that shared specific experiences and advice, there was constructive peer-to-peer dialogue and connections made to continue exploring these and other practices to strengthen our rural communities. Thank you to everyone that participated.

On Wednesday, I had a great day on the Western Campus of Wake Tech Community College, with our dear friends of the National Association of Community College Entrepreneurship; NACCE. The day began with a discussion on expanding the Every Day Entrepreneur Venture Fund and concluded with the official ribbon cutting ceremony for the new permanent NACCE headquarters at WTCC’s Western Campus in Cary, NC.

Thursday’s snow threat was no threat to the hundreds of folks that attended the Kerr-Tar Regional Council of Governments Economic Development Summit, at the majestic McGregor Hall in Henderson, NC. They were kind enough to let yours truly speak on the need of rural place-based and regional collaboration for inclusive growth through entrepreneurship. It was very encouraging to see so many people willing to brave the elements to support this vital work.

For NC IDEA however, every week is entrepreneurship week!

So this week the Entrepreneurship Gospel Tour continues with appearances at the Chamber of Catawba County’s Annual Shareholders and Investors Luncheon, in Hickory, and one of my favorite topics, Veteran entrepreneurship, at the Bunker Labs official ribbon cutting, for their new Charlotte based chapter!

In between all of this, we have a couple funding opportunities currently underway that some of you might want to check out. ; )

(C) NC IDEA Foundation