Kit Bond Incubator Offers Hands On Experiences to Students

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    Innovation Stockyard and Digital Sandbox KC have partnered up with two local St. Joseph businesses along with Missouri Western as a way to bring new jobs and more business to St. Joseph.

    Innovation Stockyard is located in the Kit Bond Science & Technology Incubator and is a place for businesses to go to to start or help their business grow. They help any business, but they specialize in the animal science field. The building offers scientific facilities for the businesses and helps them bring new ideas to the market. Digital Sandbox KC is located in Kansas City and has helped over 500 entrepreneurs.

    The two local businesses are Carol’s Irish Bitters and Grant Company.

    “The Bitters Company is just a start-up company that will be making a food additive, and the Grant company, they actually really will be using students from Missouri Western to work on marketing,” Ronan Molloy, president of Innovation Stockyard, said. “They’re getting equipment and computers and stuff like that so that they can have students come in here and learn about hands on marketing from them and that perspective.”

    Due to the fact the Innovation Stockyard is located on campus, many opportunities have been available for students.

    “At the moment we have another company here called Publicity Providers, which uses two chemistry students to help work on projects as well as an intern that works at the front desk,” Molloy said. “The more integrated we are with the students the more we’re filling our goals.”

    The Incubator is currently partnered with eight companies. The companies include Innovation Stockyard, United States Animal Association, Grant Company, Carol’s Irish Bitters, Tonisity, Biozyme, Kibo Biosciences LLC and Sphere3. All of these companies are allowed free working space in the Incubator on campus.

    “It’s always our goal to give students the ability to have hands on experiences,” Director in the Center of Entrepreneurship Annette Weeks said. “Whether it’s school of business students or in some other capacity. We are an applied learning institution so that’s always our goal.”

    “It makes me feel really good that we have these opportunities,” freshman business major Nathan Kelly said. “If I decide to not go into the military, I can easily pick up a career after graduating from the Craig School of Business. They provide us with so many opportunities for success after college, and I’m very grateful.”

    Digital Sandbox KC partnered with the Innovation Stockyard in 2017 as a way to branch out to help entrepreneurs in different areas.

    “Because these businesses will be located in Innovation Stockyard, it’s very close in proximity,” Weeks said. “It’s easy for students to get involved. They can help them with marketing, they can help them with other aspects of the business, and then you never know what could lead into employment opportunities.”