Director Startup WV and Entrepreneurship - Startup WV

The VP of Startup WV within West Virginia University is seeking applications for a Director Startup WV and Entrepreneurship. Reporting to the VP of Startup and working with the innovation centers across WVU, the position will support WVU's role in the economic development of the state and coach and support student /community entrepreneurship. The incumbent will be a key leader for connecting resources and contacts in driving prosperity in WV through economic development and business startups. Some of the activities include: coaching, teaching, facilitation of meetings, proposals, starting up new initiatives and supporting the entrepreneurial ecosystem internal and external to the university.

In order to be successful in this position, the ideal candidate will:

Startup WV – Economic Development Lead

  • Work collaboratively to grow and diversify West Virginia's economy.
  • Coordinate efforts and reconfiguration of the resources of the innovation centers and hubs across all the WVU System.
  • Work with units across campus to engage with the Governor’s Cabinet officials, the leadership of the State Legislature and the Congressional Delegation of West Virginia to build and present the case for resources needed to support initiatives around economic development for the state.
  • Align resources and units that work on outreach, economic development and applied research.
  • Engage community business leaders, university stakeholders and state representatives.
  • Monitor industry trends, emerging legislation and adapt trainings/consultations to keep up with changes.
  • Coordinate and lead key meetings with state and federal stakeholders to advance the economy in WV.
  • Assist with economic development activities through the university, assisting in local area and across the state.

Work with WVU LaunchLab, Encova Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship and the WVU entrepreneurial ecosystem

  • Conduct mall business coaching with the goal of promoting the creation and growth of small businesses.
  • Support training efforts (ICorps, business plan competitions, guest lecture and workshops) to educate new small business owners, including students and audiences outside of WVU, on critical functions of a business.
  • Administer and direct business training and technical assistance programs and services with key stakeholders from the WVU LaunchLab and Encova Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship.
  • Provide expertise and support for students and community members in creating and advancing business plans.
  • Assess the needs of stakeholders and local businesses and craft appropriate business solutions.
  • Assist in securing and maintaining grant funding.
  • Partner with WVU Extension to understand the needs of local communities and support community-based training.


  • Teach in-load classes of 1/1 (Fall/Spring) in areas of interest/expertise.

Supervisory/Lead Roles

  • Report to the VP of Startup. This position will independently direct and coordinate operational functions with general guidance of the VP of Startup.

Qualifications :

  • Master’s Degree required in Business, Management, Communications, Community Development, Leadership, Recreation including Outdoor, or related field.
  • Three (3) years of experience with business startups and coaching small business.
  • Three (3) years of progressive experience in economic development, entrepreneurship and/or business coaching.
  • Demonstrated skills in meeting and group facilitation.
  • Analytical skills to identify problems, assess alternatives, and render consistent logical decisions.
  • Attention to detail, focus on intentional follow-up to move initiatives along.
  • Demonstrated ability to foster positive relationships with multiple diverse professional constituencies.
  • Skilled in communicating complex ideas to a variety of constituencies.
  • Ability to be innovative, strategic, and thoughtful about multiple constituents and projects.
  • Self-starter with the ability to manage multiple responsibilities simultaneously in a fast-paced environment.
  • Strong oral and written communication skills, including large group presentations.
  • Needs to be a self-motivated innovator that looks for unique opportunities to advance the program and state.
  • Valid Driver's License.

At West Virginia University, we pride ourselves on a tireless endeavor for achievement. We are home to some of the most passionate, innovative minds in the country who push their limits for the sake of progress, constantly moving the world forward. Our students, faculty and staff make this institution one of the best out there, and we are proud to stand as one voice, one university, one WVU. Find out more about your opportunities as a Mountaineer at .

West Virginia University is proud to be an Equal Opportunity employer, and is the recipient of an NSF ADVANCE award for gender equity. The University values diversity among its faculty, staff, and students, and invites applications from all qualified applicants regardless of race, ethnicity, color, religion, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, nationality, genetics, disability, or Veteran status.

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