Students and Alumni Discuss Starting Businesses in New Podcast from Georgetown Entrepreneurship

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Georgetown Entrepreneurship has launched a podcast, Venture Forward, to tell the stories of Georgetown University student and alumni entrepreneurs. Hosted by alumna Jacki Abbey (MBA’97),  the podcast began last fall and now is in its third season. It seeks to “inspire, educate, and entertain all those in the Georgetown community and beyond,” according to Abbey.

The idea for the podcast came from the initiative’s Leonsis Family Entrepreneurship Prize[l1]  pitch competition, Bark Tank, which awards cash prizes to Georgetown students who have launched or are prepared to launch new business ventures that address problems in the world around them. Abbey and Jeff Reid, founding director of Georgetown Entrepreneurship, worked together to form a podcast that would highlight the stories of entrepreneurs like those at the Bark Tank competition.

“We have students and alumni who are doing amazing things, and we’re always looking for ways to share these stories with the world in general,” said Reid. 

Each episode highlights how an entrepreneur or group of entrepreneurs created a new organization or product. The podcast’s first season focused on Bark Tank winners, while season two featured members of the Georgetown Venture Lab, a coworking space operated by Georgetown Entrepreneurship that allows alumni entrepreneurs to work together in downtown Washington, D.C. Season three, which recently launched, features winners of the Georgetown Alliance Entrepreneurial Excellence Awards.

“The podcast illustrates the diversity of entrepreneurs in our community,” said Reid. “We have everything from high tech to food-related to social impact. Entrepreneurs really do come from all walks of life.”

Guests on the show have included Shavini Fernando (G’18), founder of OxiWear, a company developing a fashionable medical device that measures an at-risk person’s vital signs, and Zach Oschin (SFS’20), co-founder of Elenas, a digital-direct sales platform based in Bogotá that allows Latin American women to earn an income selling beauty products.

Looking forward, both Abbey and Reid are excited about sharing more stories on entrepreneurship and continuing to improve the production quality of the show. 

“In season one we were doing all the recording ourselves in the Gelardin Media Center, figuring it out as we went. Now we use a recording studio downtown that has state-of-the-art equipment and a producer on site who manages all things technical. It makes such a difference,” said Abbey. 

Reid sees the podcast continuing as long as there are stories to tell. “We have so many good stories because Georgetown turns out so many great entrepreneurs and people trying to solve problems in the world and doing really creative things. Their stories are worth sharing,” he said.