Published 11/01/14

Bryant CEO named nation's best chapter

The Bryant University chapter of Collegiate Entrepreneurs' Organization has been named the nation's best. The award was announced on Saturday, Nov. 1, at the national CEO convention held in Orlando, FL. It is the fifth time in a decade Bryant has claimed the coveted award.

The Bryant chapter also won the organization's 2014 Best Networking award.

The Best National Chapter award recognizes the outstanding tools, workshops, guest speakers, and hands-on learning activities the winning chapter has sponsored and organized during the past year. Students were judged on criteria such as presentation quality and delivery, and chapter leadership and accomplishments supported by metrics and results. There are more than 400 chapters of CEO in the United States.

Kudos poured in as news of the award traveled across the Internet. Former Bryant CEO president and Harris Roberts '14 even traveled to Orlando to cheer for the group.

Current president Renee Lawlor '15 shared her excitement on Twitter.

"I could not be more proud of our organization and this amazing achievement!," she said later via email. "I'm happy to be able to bring this award to Bryant and for the aid it can bring in developing our entrepreneurship program."

CEO team members include Lawlor; Courtney Kunzig ’14, vice president; Joseph St. Thomas ’15, marketing chair; Josh Velez ’17, secretary; and James Grant ’16. Extended executive board and committee members provide additional support. Earlier in the week, Lawlor gave credit to all members of Bryant CEO. “Because of them, the entrepreneurial spirit on campus is electric and extends far beyond the students majoring in Entrepreneurship,” she said.

Michael A. Roberto, D.B.A, Trustee Professor of Management, has served as the organization’s adviser since 2006. He offers feedback and advice, but does not organize or lead any CEO events. “I’m proud of the fact that our students not only learn and practice entrepreneurship in our CEO chapter, but they also receive hands-on leadership development activities.”

Among this year’s events were:

  • two elevator pitch competitions;
  • a regional entrepreneurship conference that attracted approximately 200 students;
  • an annual “app-a-thon,” where students present detailed concepts and designs for new campus smart phone apps;
  • community service projects.

Through the CEO, students have networked with renowned speakers ranging from Chris Stevens, a founder of Keurig, to Dave Alwan of “Shark Tank” fame.

Watch the video that helped Bryant CEO secure a spot in the finals.