Volunteer Spotlight: Building Your Dream Business
EHS Economics students were given the opportunity to listen to two local, successful entrepreneurs. David Burke (Co-Founder and Creative Director of Great Lakes Collection) and Chris Moquist (Founder and Owner of YoYo Donuts) shared their journeys of starting and operating a business.
While starting a clothing and lifestyle brand in some ways differs from a donut bakery, there were strong parallels the students learned are key components to launching a company. Making sure the product or service you are going to provide is something that you’re incredibly passionate about, exceling at leveraging resources, and being prepared to not turn a profit for a period of time are a few things that aspiring business owners need to possess and expect.
Also highlighted during their presentations were the approaches and backgrounds they had heading into their ventures. Chris utilized his 25+ years in the corporate world to open YoYo Donuts in 2010 with significant start-up costs. Great Lakes launched as a grass roots effort with a small portion of savings in 2012 while David was finishing his college career at the University of St. Thomas.
The students hearing from these community experts offered a priceless inside look at what it takes to become an entrepreneur. We are incredibly grateful to host these events that are memorable and elevate their learning.
- Fun Fact: YoYo Donuts is the exclusive provider for the Minnesota Vikings’ Donut Club. The Vikings host their donut ritual the day before every game.
- Fun Fact: In collaboration with Save the Boundary Waters, a portion of the proceeds for every Great Lakes Collection “Canoe the BWCA” hoodie is donated to the Freshwater Initiative.