Calvin Peng-Bulger participated in many Iowa JPEC-run student organizations during his time at Iowa obtaining a BBA in Entrepreneurial Management. Through these organizations, Peng-Bulger was able to develop his own personal network of like-minded students to help him take the leap into the entrepreneurship world.


How has having your BBA in Entrepreneurial Management and an International Business Certificate impacted your career today?

I’ve learned a valuable lesson that the essentials of entrepreneurship are all the same across the world, but the business cultures are very different in each country. My favorite class that I took was International Business Environment with Erin Johnson. We did an international group project about popcorn with students from Poland which was really cool.

What Iowa JPEC programs were you involved in during your time at Iowa?

I majored in Entrepreneurial Management, so I've kind of always been involved with Iowa JPEC, but my journey really started with the Iowa Startup Games my junior year. That was what introduced me to the entrepreneurship world. After that, I was hooked and got involved with Founders Club, Student Accelerator, Sigma Nu Tau and also participated in the Rose Francis Elevator Pitch and the Business Model Competition.

What competition did you learn the most from?

I learned the most from the Business Model Competition (BMC) because it required me to create an actual business model canvas. At the BMC, I presented my business model to judges who are experienced entrepreneurs outside the University of Iowa for the opportunity to win seed funding. It helped me learn how to come up with a real business model and pitch it to others.

What got you interested in Founders Club?

The people. Everyone was so supportive and passionate. Founders Club was the best group of people I’ve ever met during my time at Iowa. Honestly, the most beneficial thing I learned from my involvement with Iowa JPEC is to surround yourself with positive people. These are the ones that will really help you get your ideas off the ground.

Has being in this program impacted your career now?

It has impacted my career so much. One thing I will say is that it has improved my networking skills dramatically. Iowa JPEC offers so many opportunities for students to network and practice their pitching skills, which has been extremely beneficial in my professional life.

What is one piece of advice you would give to another student interested in Entrepreneurial Management?

Entrepreneurship is all about execution. Phil Knight came up with his shoe company idea in an entrepreneurship class at Stanford which ultimately became Nike. If you have a good business idea, get out of the classroom and just do it!