July 20, 2023

Venture Kitchen Helps Students Create Their Own Startups

Students with food-related startup ideas are now utilizing the MSU Union's catering kitchen to help turn their dreams into reality. The Venture Kitchen is a food startup incubator launched by the Burgess Institute for Entrepreneurship and Innovation.

According to Lori Fischer, director of operations at the Burgess Institute, the Institute's goal is "to provide [students] with a space to experiment with their recipes and to produce their products."

With the new space, students in the Discovery Venture Creation program have access to a professional kitchen replete with tools and appliances they might not have access to otherwise. The Discovery Venture Creation program is a non-academic program that supports students' business and entrepreneurial endeavors through the Burgess Institute. 
The Venture Kitchen found its humble home in the MSU Union through the availability of a catering kitchen that had fallen into vacancy. 

"We were fortunate to find this space," said Fischer, speaking of the kitchen once used by MSU Union staff for catering events held in the second-floor ballroom. "Finding a fully functional, professional culinary space on campus was a pleasant surprise."

The space, in this iteration, opened in 2022.

Today, the Venture Kitchen serves many student startups, including Soup N' Sip, a spoonless soup for people on the go, created by Olivia Simone (pictured below), a student entrepreneur with the Burgess Institute.

Soup N' Sip Creator Olivia Simone"I love how professional it makes me feel," said Simone. "Being in the Venture Kitchen makes me feel so official. It gives my business legitimacy."

Fostering professionalism and legitimacy is incredibly important to the Venture Kitchen’s programming. The space also allows students to become licensed to sell their products at a more professional level.

Fischer hopes using the Venture Kitchen will bring more students to the MSU Union, whether for the kitchen itself or potentially to purchase the products. "We are really interested in driving more traffic to [the MSU Union]; it's a great space we want to see utilized a little bit more."

To find more information or to get involved with the Venture Kitchen, visit eship.msu.edu under the Venturing tab. Students can apply to the Discovery Venture Creation program to use facilities like the Venture Kitchen or become interns to assist student entrepreneurs in various fields. You can also keep in touch with Soup N' Sip on Instagram (@soupnsip).

By: Jack Phillips

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