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Loyola University New Orleans hosts local innovation guest lecture series

Loyola press release - September 23, 2015

In advance of NOLA Tech Week, Loyola New Orleans’ College of Business launches series of public talks by leading area entrepreneurs.

The Center for Entrepreneurship and Community Development within the College of Business at Loyola University New Orleans is pleased to host on Thursday the first of four planned guest lectures by prominent local entrepreneurs. The series is designed to showcase local innovation happening and begins with a public talk by Dr. Tarun Jolly, founder and CEO of genetic testing pioneer RenaissanceRX.

The event is at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 24 at Loyola University New Orleans, 6363 St. Charles Ave. in Miller Hall, Room 114. Doors open at 6 p.m. to provide time for networking and light fare. The event is free and open to the public. A networking reception will follow. Guests are asked to please RSVP.

“RenaissanceRx is an amazing growth story ― replete with both successes and challenges ― about being on the bleeding edge of an emerging and potentially game changing technology,” said Jon Atkinson, director of the Center for Entrepreneurship and Community Development. “New Orleans entrepreneur Dr. Tarun Jolly will discuss what entrepreneurship means in New Orleans and share his personal story, experience founding a number of local companies, as well as lessons learned for aspiring entrepreneurs.”

Jolly’s companies include genetic pharmaceuticals company Renaissance RX, which runs DNA and toxicology tests to help doctors customize prescriptions for their patients. Heralded as a potential leader in the city’s burgeoning biotech scene, Renaissance RX is a pioneer in its field and its successes and struggles paint a vivid picture of the life of an entrepreneur.

The Loyola Center for Entrepreneurship and Community Development at Loyola University New Orleans identifies, trains, and develops emerging entrepreneurial talent to fill “innovation-ready” workforce gaps in the local entrepreneurial ecosystem. Through targeted curricular and extracurricular programming that leverages experiential and engaged learning, the CECD is preparing the next generation of leaders to build innovative and scalable new enterprises.

“Our goal with the speaker series is to give local entrepreneurs a platform to tell their stories and to demonstrate that scaleable innovative businesses can be born in New Orleans ― and that lessons can be shared in that process,” Atkinson said. “We started this as a student-focused series, but we are moving toward marketing it toward the public. Each event in the series is an opportunity for the outside business world to interact with students and vice versa ― and we’re working to build the series into a networking forum.”
The next planned lecture is slated for Nov. 5.

For more information, contact Patricia M. Murret, Associate Director of Public Affairs, pmurret@loyno.edu, (504) 861-5448.

Loyola University New Orleans is a Catholic, Jesuit university located in the heart of the picturesque Uptown neighborhood of New Orleans. For more than 100 years, Loyola has helped shape the lives of its students, as well as the history of the city and the world, through educating men and women in the Jesuit traditions of academic excellence and service to others. Loyola’s more than 40,000 graduates serve as catalysts for change in their communities as they exemplify the comprehensive, values-laden education received at Loyola.