Integrated Marketing Senior Project Course Returns to Host Entrepreneurship Festival

Marketing Students at Rational Middle EventPictured above: BUS464 students at last year’s Rational Middle screening event.

Marketing Professor Joan Lindsey-Mullikin and Cal Poly alumnus Doug Klein of StudioGood are working with a group of marketing seniors to plan, promote and execute a landmark entrepreneurship event in San Luis Obispo. The event, slated for winter quarter 2016, will be the culmination of Mullikin’s BUS 464: Integrated Marketing Senior Project course.

According to Mullikin, the event will be “part TED conference, part Shark Tank, and part crowdfunding festival.” It will bring together a mix of entrepreneurs, venture capitalists, and community members in a place where students can share their startup projects, learn from industry experts, pitch ideas, and gather funding for new endeavors.

Marketing students participating in the senior project class will research and execute the best format for the event, focusing on elements such as collection of event sponsors, creating interests in the venture capitalist community, acquiring industry speakers, ideal location and time of year, and adopting practices from similar successful events, such as the OneSpark event in Jacksonville, Fla. Students will also create and push the promotional content on social media and other channels.

Last year’s BUS 464 students went through a similar process to develop an integrated communications plan to host a film screening and panel discussion for the Rational Middle, a video series on energy sources sponsored by Shell Oil. The group of 25 students was able to meet and exceed all of the goals they had set for the event, including attracting more than 200 students, faculty and staff to the screening for a spirited discussion on energy consumption, policy and the environment. The team presented a final report on the event’s impact to Shell in December 2014.

Mullikin hopes to see similar success in this year’s class, and is excited to help put San Luis Obispo and Cal Poly on the entrepreneurship map.

For more information about the senior project course and the event, contact Professor Mullikin at