RISE is an entrepreneurship lab for high school students and community colleges, where best practices are tested and applied. RISE also creates tools, resources, and training.

Dr. Tracey Danner-Odenwelder is the recipient of the RISE Fest 2024 Best Community College Facilitator award for her work with the Muncie Entrepreneurship program.

“We started our entrepreneur program last spring and are currently in our second cohort,” Iris Hammel, RISE Executive Director says. “Next week, we will have graduates for the first time in the Entrepreneur Certificate program. The RISE prize is given out to the top facilitators and programs in the state implementing RISE’s program. We feel the Muncie Entrepreneurship Program is hands down implementing the core tactics and meeting students where they are to get the most lasting impact on their futures.”

Cayonna Lewis, a Muncie student graduating with the ENT certificate, accepted the award on Danner-Odenwelder’s behalf.

I’m extremely proud of her and grateful to have had such an amazing professor. I’m thankful to have learned and grown so much throughout the course of each semester. Being in each of her classes has helped me expand and develop my business into what it is today.

– Cayonna Lewis

Danner-Odenwelder said she enjoys teaching our entrepreneurs and seeing students grow their businesses. She especially appreciates the team effort from Alisa Wells, Qiana Clemens, Rene’ Wagner, Jennifer Gasiorek, Danna Bishop, Jeremy Brown, Emery Peck, and Chancellor Jeffrey D. Scott.

“We took a thinking outside ‘of the box strategy and a team effort from all involved to ensure a top-quality program for our students. This award is a great honor. Our Muncie campus has received a $1,000 prize for this award.”

Chancellor Scott said, “We are so excited to watch these entrepreneurial students grow their businesses and envisioning them as trailblazers in our community’s narrative of small business success,” Chancellor Scott says. “Great job to the entire team who worked together to support our students and for launching our Entrepreneurship program!”

If you are interested in the Entrepreneurship program, please contact askmuncie@ivytech.edu.

About Ivy Tech Community College

Ivy Tech Community College is Indiana's largest public postsecondary institution and the nation's largest singly accredited statewide community college system, accredited by the Higher Learning Commission. Ivy Tech has campuses throughout Indiana and also serves thousands of students annually online. It serves as the state's engine of workforce development, offering associate degrees, long- and short-term certificate programs, industry certifications, and training that aligns with the needs of the community. The College provides a seamless transfer to other colleges and universities in Indiana, as well as out of state, for a more affordable route to a bachelor's degree.