Centers for Outreach & Engagement

Overview of Past Events

2013-2014 BusinessGateway Series

Program Overview:

The BusinessGateway Series is a professional development program presented by leading law and business faculty and business practitioners to help companies make informed business decisions and pursue sound strategic growth.

The 2013-2014 program was made possible by a collaboration between the Monte Ahuja College of Business, the Cleveland-Marshall College of Law, and the Shaker LaunchHouse. Open to the entire Northeast Ohio business and legal community, the program was designed to assist and inform small and medium sized enterprises to grow in a global economy. Programs featured leading CSU business and law faculty as well as guest speakers from the business, venture capital, and banking world.

September 27, 2013: 
Venture Capital and Non-Traditional Funding for Small Business
Featured Speakers:
  • Todd Federman, Executive Director, North Coast Angel Fund
  • Michael Goldberg, Co-Founder, Bridge Investment Fund
  • Barry Rosenbaum, Senior Fellow, University of Akron
  • Bill Trainor, Managing Director, Mutual Capital Partners Fund

There are many misconceptions that arise when we talk about the non-tradition methods of funding. The speakers of this session are all leaders in their various fields and will present an overview of the various kinds of non-traditional funding. This will range from early stage angels funding to late stage venture capital funding. Come and enjoy a great lunch while you learn from the experts. Be sure to bring your questions. This event sold out quickly last year, please register today to guarantee your seat.

October 25, 2013: 
Doing Business Online: How to Avoid Pitfalls and Minimize Risks
Featured Speaker: Daniel J. McMullen, Partner at Calfee, Halter & Griswold LLP

Doing business online presents great opportunities and is an inescapable reality for any modern company.  Your company website is an indispensable tool that broadens your customer base and facilitates transactions.  Notwithstanding these benefits, doing business online can also raise a number of legal issues and risks that need to be addressed.  Daniel J. McMullen, partner at Calfee, Halter & Griswold LLP and adjunct faculty member at Cleveland State University, will lead a discussion on the legal risks of web-based transactions and share best practices to help your company do business safely on the Internet.

November 22, 2013: Import/Export Basics
Featured Speaker:
Nate Ward, Director, International Trade Assistance Center, Monte Ahuja College of Business

Now that the world is flat, businesses of all sizes can go global by selling their products and services abroad. The National Export Initiative launched by the White House in 2010 further opened the door to international business by creating new opportunities for U.S. companies to export their goods. Businesses can significantly grow their customer base by penetrating foreign markets, but doing business abroad also poses certain risks and challenges that must be managed. Mr. Ward will describe how best to enter foreign markets and minimize the business risks that may arise.

January 24, 2014: Master Sales for Business Success
Featured Speaker: Diance Helbig, Seize the Day Coaching

There are three critical elements of the sales process that must be present for someone to be successful. They are: Value, Relationships, Follow Up. In this presentation we discuss each element in detail, as well as how they are interconnected. Like a 3-legged stool, you must excel at all three in order to realize true success. While not complicated they can be challenging to embrace, especially if you've been taught to 'sell' your features and benefits. This presentation shows you how successful you can be by simply adopting the principles outlined. You'll quickly see how much sense this system makes and how easy it is to implement. In addition, the rewards are long-term.

February 28, 2014: Legal Issues for Start Ups 
Five Things Every Entrepreneur Needs to Know When Launching a Company
Featured Speakers:Mark J. Sundahl, John Plecnik, and James Roosa, Cleveland-Marshall College of Law

Launching a successful company requires the alignment of the stars – a good product, a viable business plan, and the human and financial capital to make it work. When bringing all of these pieces together, the entrepreneur sometimes neglects to give proper attention to the legal issues that are integral to the long-term success of the company. Prof. Mark Sundahl and Prof. John Plecnik, together with James Roosa, C|M|LAW Adjunct Faculty member and principal of Roosa Co. LPA, will lead a discussion of five essential legal issues that need to be addressed by every entrepreneur when launching operations in order to avoid unnecessary problems down the road.


April 25, 2014:  Intellectual Property and the Entrepreneur
What You Need to Know about Patents, Copyright, and Trademarks
Featured Speakers: Timothy Nauman, Fay Sharpe LLP

A company's ideas, inventions and innovations are its most valuable assets -- and every company should take steps to protect these assets. Timothy Nauman, of the boutique IP law firm of Fay Sharpe LLP, will lead a panel of lawyers in a discussion of the law of patents, copyright and trademarks and explain what entrepreneurs needs to do in order to protect their intellectual property.

All Events Were Located at:

Shaker LaunchHouse

3558 Lee Road

Shaker Hts., Ohio 44120

For More Information about the Series or to Connect with the Organizers:

Please contact the Centers for Outreach and Engagement at 216.687.4750 or