Gary S. Holmes Center for Entrepreneurship

The Holmes Center is the hub of entrepreneurship and innovation at the University of Minnesota that inspires, educates and connects the next generation of Minnesota's entrepreneurs. We mobilize the community and provide support for emerging entrepreneurs, both within and outside the University, through experiential courses and engaging outreach programs.


Largest Statewide Startup Competition


New Venture Concepts Evaluated in MIN-CORPS


Mentors Advising Students and Alumni


Ranking for Global MBA Programs in Entrepreneurship

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Seeking to connect and collaborate with fellow entrepreneurial spirits? Join us at the Toaster Innovation Hub to ignite innovation, spark creativity, and launch your ideas to the next level. The Holmes Center has partnered with the Libraries to crank up the volume in Walter Library by inviting students to make some noise and collaborate in the Toaster. 

Explore the Toaster Innovation Hub




Calling all female-identifying University of Minnesota students interested in entrepreneurship. 💪 

Meet the WE* Mentorship Program:
🚀 8-week accelerated program
🤝 Mentorship & guidance from top local entrepreneurs
🌟 Skills, confidence, network
🎯 Launch success!

Applications now open for both mentors & mentees

Learn More About the Program Here


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Launch MN, a statewide collaborative effort to accelerate the growth of startups and amplify Minnesota as a national leader in innovation.

Explore Launch MN

Initiatives to support entrepreneurs

Minnesota boasts a thriving entrepreneurial ecosystem with various initiatives supporting emerging entrepreneurs. The state is home to MN Cup, the largest startup competition in the US, MIN-Corps, a catalyst for tech commercialization, Grow North, a resource hub for food and agriculture entrepreneurs, and WE*, an organization empowering women-led startups.

MN Cup

MN Cup

MN Cup is the largest statewide startup competition in the country, supporting emerging entrepreneurs through events, education, mentoring and an annual competition.

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MIN-Corps develops talent and catalyzes technology commercialization across the University of Minnesota through a series of courses, workshops and bootcamps.


MIN-Corps is a partnership of the Holmes Center, College of Science & Engineering and TechComm.

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Naturally Minnesota

Naturally Minnesota, formerly known as Grow North is a resource and connection hub serving Minnesota's food and agriculture entrepreneur ecosystem.

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WE* is focused on supporting scalable, women-led startups in Minnesota through a series of conferences and events.

Founders Day Highlights MVP Challenge

Monday, May 15, 2023
Founders Day 2023 welcomed 250+ guests to celebrate innovation and entrepreneurship across the University of Minnesota.

Lindsay Receives Entrepreneur of Year Award

Thursday, May 11, 2023

Joy Lindsay received the 2023 University of Minnesota Entrepreneur of the Year at the eleventh annual Founders Day celebration on May 10th. …

Holmes Center Recognized

Saturday, October 16, 2021
The Holmes Center received the Unique Contributions to Venture Creation Award at the Global Conference of Entrepreneurship Centers.
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The MN Cup Advantage

Every year, more than a thousand entrepreneurs compete in MN Cup — the largest statewide startup contest in the country. Organized by the Holmes Center, the competition fuels job creation by connecting entrepreneurs with the resources to move their ideas forward.

The 2022 competition is underway with entrepreneurs from across the state competing for $400,000+ of non-dilutive cash prizes and access to mentors and resources to develop your new business idea.  Participation in the largest statewide startup competition in the country is free and open to any Minnesota company with less than $1 million in annual revenue.

Entrepreneurship With a Purpose

Through a robust entrepreneurship ecosystem, the U of M encourages aspiring student and faculty entrepreneurs to pursue their startup passions.

Business as a Force for Good

The Carlson School commissioned MBA student Laura Johnson to explore the idea of “Business as a Force for Good” and depict her findings on canvas.


Holmes Center Events