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BIG Dream Gathering attracts hundreds of participants

Matthew Stultz Feb 14, 2019

Waynesburg University recently hosted Mitch Matthews and the BIG Dream Gathering (BDG), a presentation that showcases the power and importance of dreaming big. Matthews, co-founder of the BDG, and other BDG staff members also spent time visiting various undergraduate classes.

The free event, which was open to the public, attracted more than 300 participants from Waynesburg University and the greater Waynesburg community.

“The BIG Dream Gathering far surpassed our expectations,” said Dr. Marie Leichliter Krause, assistant provost. “Students, alumni, faculty, staff and community members of all ages came together to engage in the process of identifying goals, creating plans and motivating one another into action.”

The event was funded in part by the e-HIVE (Entrepreneurial Hub for Innovative Ventures and Endeavors), the Crosby Lecture Series and a NetVUE Program Development Grant.

Mindy Walls, chair of the W. Robert Stover Entrepreneurial Leadership Program and assistant professor of business administration, helped to sponsor and organize the event; she received nothing but positive feedback from participants.

“Any time that you can get students thinking about their passions, it might lead them to listen to their calling,” Walls shared. “It’s what [faculty and staff] are all trying to do – it’s our purpose.”

Chyanne Vanzant, a junior international business student and a student worker for the e-HIVE, served as a volunteer for the event.

“It was truly inspiring to see faculty, community members and students alike, join together and write out and vocalize their dreams,” Vanzant said.

In addition to the evening presentation, Matthews visited students in Walls’ new venture creation class for a discussion on entrepreneurship earlier in the day.

“Mitch Matthews gave us a good look in class on how to expose your product or services through the sales funnel, a major part of a business,” shared Nathan Jecelin, a sophomore entrepreneurship major. “Mitch is a big inspiration to a lot of people and has changed many lives.”

Another student, John-Glenn Davis, a junior business management major, reflected on how much the range of goals and types of people stood out to him.

“Everyone has dreams and no one’s are more important, no matter the age,” he said. “It was incredible to be able to see what kinds of dreams people actually have.”

BDG events have helped people find their dream internships or jobs, launch businesses, run marathons, start non-profit organizations, make movies and write books, among others.

“We saw business cards exchanged, people shaking hands and new relationships being formed,” added Leichliter Krause. “These benefits will continue long after the event has ended.”