Rural Entrepreneurship Academy

August 20, 2019 10:32 AM
Blog Post

The Agricultural Entrepreneurship Initiative offered a new pilot program during the summer of 2019. This part-time program, the Rural Entrepreneurship Academy, was geared towards students who were interested in opening a business or farm in a rural setting. Those participating in the program dedicated 5 to 10 hours per week on a quest to turn their business idea into a successful reality. Students encouraged each other and learned from mentor, Kevin Kimle, during their weekly phone progress meetings. Students also participated in a job shadow experience that aligned with their interests and enhanced their ability to start and succeed in their business or farm. Honorarium payments were provided based on level of engagement and milestones reached. 

There were six students in the 2019 cohort:

  • Amanda Anderson - Vaccinations
  • Andrew Albrecht - Manure Transportation
  • Annie Zeimis - Crickets for Human Consumption
  • Natalie Eick - Ice Cream
  • Nick McQuilkin - Custom Hay Baling
  • Olivia Schlarmann - Conservation Education


"I am grateful to have had the chance to be part of the Rural Entrepreneurship Academy this summer, and would definitely recommend it to anyone looking to be involved in an entrepreneurial, Ag-based field in the future."

     ~ Natalie Eick


Interested in learning more or joining the 2020 cohort?                                                                               

Contact Kevin Kimle:

  • Email:
  • Phone: (515) 294 - 1803