Carbondale | March 9-10, 2020

March 9, 2020: Pre-Conference ($25) 
Dunn-Richmond Economic Building (150 E Pleasant Hill Rd, Carbondale, IL 62901)

March 10, 2020: Conference ($75)
SIU Carbondale (1263 Lincoln Dr, Carbondale, IL 62901)

Payment Information:

Attendees will be invoiced post-event to the organization listed during registration. If you would like your invoice to be sent elsewhere, please email

Professional Development Hours:

Attendees will receive CEU’s for attending the pre-conference (2 CEU’s), conference (6 CEU’s).


1:00 PM – 4:00 PM

Registration and Check In

2:00 PM – 4:00 PM

Pre-Conference Session
Participants will explore the Small Business Incubator program and interact with the developers of each kickstart housed in the Economic Development Center.  CLICK HERE to check out the businesses that will share their innovative concepts!

4:30 PM – 6:00 PM

Evening Social
Participants, small business developers, sponsors and vendors will have a relaxed, unstructured time to network while enjoying heavy hors d’oeuvres and refreshments.  Take advantage of this time to make connections, develop partnerships and explore innovative ideas!

7:00 AM – 8:00 AM

Registration and Check In

8:00 AM – 9:30 AM

Keynote Presentation

9:40 AM – 10:30 AM

Equity Session

10:40 AM – 11:30 AM

Panel Discussion: Industry Representatives

11:30 AM – 12:30 PM


12:30 PM – 1:20 PM

Integration of Core Academics

1:30 PM – 2:20 PM

Panel Discussion: Student Spotlight

2:30 PM – 3:20 PM



The conference has secured a conference room rate of $85/night plus tax at the Home2 Suites by Hilton (200 West Elm St, Carbondale, IL).

Venue Highlights

  • The SIU Research Park is a non-profit corporation affiliated with Southern Illinois University Carbondale (SIU Carbondale) promoting technology and knowledge-based enterprise development within the Park and southern Illinois. It is the primary innovation and technology space in the southern third of Illinois and is a member of the Association of University Research Parks (AURP). As the University’s arm for technology transfer and research spin-outs, the Research Park is the local manifestation of the global innovation system. Its strength and success are directly tied to SIU’s classification as a Carnegie Doctoral Universities: Higher Research Activity institution, ranked among the top four percent of higher education research institutions in the United States.
  • SIU’s Office of Innovation and Economic Development serves as the university’s primary business and community development outreach arm.
  • SIU’s Small Business Incubator Program’s mission is to accelerate the start-up and expansion of small businesses in southern Illinois. The program is here to provide the guidance and consulting necessary to make sure those start-up and expanding firms have the tools necessary to succeed.
  • The Illinois Small Business Development Center at SIU provides entrepreneurs and small business owners with no-cost, confidential, one-on-one business advising services, research, resources and low-cost training programs.
  • The Office of Workforce Innovation and Research is a multi-faceted organization that can take an idea from conception to evaluation into pilot testing and on to implementation.
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