University News

Entrepreneur in Residence Fosters Students’ Business Ideas

Published: March 26, 2019 | Author: Lyndsey Nelson | Category: Academics

headshot of Landon Smith, SUU's Entrepreneur in ResidenceAs Southern Utah’s entrepreneurship program continues to grow and develop, a new and enterprising position has brought former SUU student Landon Smith back to his alma mater as the program’s new entrepreneur in residence.

This new position speaks to much of the change the entrepreneurship program has been experiencing. With the addition of an entrepreneur in residence in August 2018, students with businesses and business ideas can now go directly to someone with businesses of his own for advice and guidance as they take their first steps along the path of entrepreneurship.

“My role is to mentor students who have business ideas, who have existing businesses or are just interested in entrepreneurship or business in general, and I sit down with them and walk through those ideas, answer questions, and help them start on that path,” Smith explained, “I always wanted to teach and always wanted to interact with and help students.”

In hearing Smith’s story, students can see a path very similar to their own. After receiving his undergraduate degree from Southern Utah, Smith turned to law school to continue his education. However, money was tight, and he soon found himself turning to entrepreneurship to support himself and his new family through school, “I thought, ‘There’s got to be a way I can supplement our income while I’m in law school.’ So I dove into side business while in school. That opened my mind up to the possibility of starting a business, so I got the education, started some businesses, and followed that path.”

It was because of this desire to support himself and his family that Smith founded his two businesses, Jade Marketing Group, a marketing company which helps local businesses attract more customers through social media and marketing strategies, and Red Rock Publishing, which recruits elite writing talent to develop and provide marketing plans for independent contractors to accomplish their marketing goals.

While Smith occasionally still practices law and manages his businesses, he has thrown himself into his position as an entrepreneur in residence. Smith says teaching students with drive has been a clear highlight of the position, and watching the students grow and develop their vision into life-changing businesses has been the highlight of his time at SUU.

“I have just loved it,” Smith shared, “it has been so fun, and as fun as running your own business is, I have loved interacting with the students and building the program. I love interacting with students who have ideas and want to serve people in a greater way, so they come up with new and exciting things. It’s fun to be on the cusp of that innovation and I’ve learned a lot.”


Tags: Entrepreneurship School of Business Faculty

Contact Information:

Nikki Koontz, executive director of marketing communication
435-586-5400
nikkikoontz@suu.edu