UM, MSU Launch Blackstone Entrepreneurship Programs - ABC FOX MONTANA NEWS, WEATHER, SPORTS - KTMF/KWYB

UM, MSU Launch Blackstone Entrepreneurship Programs

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MISSOULA -

A three-year, $2 million grant launches entrepreneurship programs at the University of Montana and Montana State.

The Blackstone Charitable Foundation awarded the grant to the state back in July, which will fund Blackstone LaunchPad programs at both schools.

The LaunchPad program will allow UM and MSU students to submit a business idea and receive guidance on how best to develop the idea.

Then, students will gain access to the Blackstone mentorship program, which includes business leaders and entrepreneurs throughout the country.

Blackstone officials said the program has the potential to generate 150 new business ventures in Montana over the next five years.

"So, I think Blackstone's investment here will be the right place and the right time and really help to stimulate economic growth in our communities," said Joe Fanguy, of the UM Office of Technology Transfer.

UM officials said they hope to have the LaunchPad program running in the University Center under the guidance of a director by this spring.

Montana is one of only five states to receive funding for LaunchPad programs this year.

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