Inspiring Entrepreneurial

You understand the power of an Entrepreneurial Mindset. NC IDEA MINDSET endeavors to bring the power of entrepreneurial thinking to North Carolinians through deployment of the Ice House Entrepreneurship Program. We support educators and facilitators across the state to develop entrepreneurial mindsets in their communities, through a variety of programmatic efforts.

Ice House is designed to develop creativity and critical thinking, effective problem solving, teamwork, and other entrepreneurial skills, enabling individuals to succeed regardless of their chosen path. We believe that the entrepreneurial mindset can foster opportunity and equity in North Carolina.

Applications for Facilitator Training are now Closed

Check back in April to meet NC's newest Ice House Entrepreneurship Program Facilitators

The Ice House Entrepreneurship Program (IHEP) is a flexible curriculum focused on teaching North Carolinians how to achieve an entrepreneurial mindset. IHEP can be delivered in several formats: online or in-person classroom, boot camp, multi-week or as a semester class.                                                                                                     

Ice House is designed to empower learners by exposing them to entrepreneurial thinking while immersing them in entrepreneurial experiences that will enable them to develop creativity and critical thinking, effective problem solving, communication, teamwork and other entrepreneurial skills – skills that will enable them to succeed regardless of their chosen path.

The Ice House curriculum has been developed by Entrepreneurial Learning Initiative (ELI). Details about the program, including course objectives, program content and intended outcomes, can be found on ELI’s website. You can also watch this short video by NC IDEA’s CEO Thom Ruhe outlining what Ice House is all about.

Who is this program designed for?

This program is for anyone interested in learning the entrepreneurial mindset! Ice House is designed for broad application in business, higher education, high school, youth programs, or workforce development audiences.

How can I take the Ice House course?

NC IDEA has statewide partners who offer IHEP courses in multiple communities. We also have a self-paced, online Ice House course. This course is free! You can use this link to request a code to get started.

How do I become an Ice House program facilitator?

If you want to bring the Ice House program to others, obtaining IHEP facilitator certification will give you the tools and skills to bring entrepreneurial thinking to your intended community.

NC IDEA is offering a Spring 2023 training in collaboration with ELI from February 21 – March 21, 2023.  Facilitator training provides background insights (the “why” of the entrepreneurial mindset), an introduction to the course materials, and tools for facilitating a course.

Applicants must:

  • Reside and work in North Carolina
  • Have a passion for developing an entrepreneurial mindset within their own organization or the people/entities/companies that they support
  • Work with a government entity, educational institution, entrepreneurial support organization, economic development organization, CDFI, or corporation                                                                                                                    

Priority consideration will be given to applicants from organizations (a) with demonstrable intent and capacity to offer the program and; (b) that are actively working in economically distressed counties.

The Entrepreneurial Leadership Institute (ELI) has a trove of case studies from IHEP programs across the globe. Outcomes range from increased job satisfaction and retention to economic development in distressed communities.                                                                                                                                                                                                      

 Here in North Carolina, IHEP programs have reached middle schoolers to adults, building opportunities for innovation and employability, as well as entrepreneurship. Dr. Stephen Moore shared the following insight on using the Ice House program and book in his freshman course at University of North Carolina at Pembroke:

“The book is ‘reachable’ by all our students and is helpful in establishing a platform and foundation that enhances the other lectures and lessons I present throughout the semester.”

NC IDEA’s ultimate goal is to empower 100,000 North Carolinians with an entrepreneurial mindset. When principles like self-direction, action-orientation, resourcefulness, critical thinking, curiosity, and creativity become widespread, small businesses start and grow, individuals reach their full potential, and our state bounds with opportunity grounded in equity.

We are grateful to partner organizations that host Ice House programming, including:

Aspire Community Capital – Charlotte, NC

Central Piedmont Community College – Charlotte, NC

Community in Schools – Pembroke, NC

Helius Foundation – Durham, NC

HUB Startups, Town of Pembroke – Pembroke, NC

Pathways Center – Raleigh, NC

Robeson Community College – Lumberton, NC

Wake Tech Prison – Raleigh, NC

The Town of Warrenton – Warren County, NC

City of Asheville – Asheville, NC

Salem College – Forsyth County, NC

Fayetteville Technical Community College – Fayetteville, NC

East Burke High School – Connelly Springs, NC

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