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Winner of Governor’s Cup blossoms
by Tribune Staff
Aug 21, 2011 | 1224 views | 0 0 comments | 8 8 recommendations | email to a friend | print
RENO — Truckee Meadows Community College graduate Katie Knapp, armed with a business plan developed during college courses and a $5,000 award from the 2011 Donald W. Reynolds Governor’s Cup collegiate business plan competition, has opened a boutique flower shop in downtown Reno.

Bumblebee Blooms Flower Boutique offers custom floral design work, gourmet gift baskets, decadent chocolates and bath and body products in the Sierra Vista building on South Sierra Street near the Truckee River.

Knapp’s business plan, which included detailed research and focused on strong marketing, received third place in the Nevada Center for Entrepreneurship and Technology’s Governor’s Cup competition in April. The $5,000 prize helped Knapp open her business in July.

“The Governor’s Cup not only helped me get the financing I needed to start my business and make me more appealing to the banks, it challenged me to overcome my hesitations and critically think about my business plan,” Knapp said. “It also supplied me with very useful information and feedback from people within the business community and helped to get me the contacts I needed for future clients.”

Knapp is a certified floral designer, champion pastry chef and was the former production designer and creative director for outdoor advertising companies.

“The plan is truly innovative,” said Marie Murgolo-Poore, Ph.D., associate dean of business studies at TMCC. “It creates a very strong sense of community that many businesses lack.”

“While the Governor’s Cup was created as an academic exercise, we see a growing number of students going on to actually start their businesses,” added Dave Archer, NCET’s president and CEO. “Given the economic challenges facing Nevada, each of these businesses is one more step in our economic recovery.”

Knapp’s win continues a tradition: Jolene Hayes, Knapp’s faculty instructor at TMCC, was a winner of the inaugural Governor’s Cup Competition in 2005.

The Donald W. Reynolds Governor’s Cup, open to all undergraduate and graduate students of each of Nevada’s universities and colleges, promotes entrepreneurial development skills among Nevada’s students of higher learning and encourages them to consider entrepreneurship as a career option. During the competition, students first practice the techniques of formulating a business plan as an academic exercise. Judges, who represent the “real world” of business start-ups, then provide the students with relevant and timely feedback. Ultimately, this feedback helps students improve or amend their business plans making the development of the business a real possibility.

Bumblebee Blooms is located at 205 S. Sierra St. Suite 103. For more information, visit www.bumblebeeblooms.biz.
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