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ImpactX Putting Student-Led Businesses to the ForeFront

Photo courtesy of Serenaty Lumpkin

The biggest challenge for business owners is getting the word out about their business. This is especially prevalent for college students with limited knowledge and opportunities to make the dream of running a business work. ImpactX gave students this opportunity at FGCU on the Library Lawn on April 1.

Senior Serenaty Lumpkin is pursuing a bachelor’s degree in Entrepreneurship. She came up with the concept of ImpactX on the basis that you do not have to be rich to run your own business.

“I just want to show students that you don’t have to be rich, you don’t have to be old,” Lumpkin said. “If you see something you want to fix, you can do it.”

Lumpkin invited RSOs related to sustainability, non-profit organizations and student-led businesses to the event, allowing them to shop at no cost. She accomplished this by partnering with Pause for Paws to request space for the event and spending her own money to provide food and entertainment for students.

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One of the many student-led businesses at the event was Caldwell’s Creations. Senior Paige Caldwell started Caldwell’s Creations in the fall of 2020, specializing in anything people may want created for them. She also teaches people how to make art on her various social media platforms.

“So this is a very interesting experience,” Caldwell said. “This is a whole new experience with a lot [of] new people. And I think it’s a really cool experience to have.”

For Lumpkin, this event was a family affair, as she could not have accomplished the event without help. She had multiple family members donate to give her the funding to get this event off the ground. Her grandmother came to make french crepes for students attending the event, and her boyfriend helped pass out food.    

The biggest challenge for Lumpkin was reserving the space to make ImpactX happen. She did not get approved as an RSO to reserve the space, which is where Pause for Paws stepped in. With Pause for Paws being a newer RSO, they ran into the stipulation that they could not purchase additional tents and tables for the event. Lumpkin had to supply these additional resources herself, but there was not enough to go around.

“I really wanted to get one of these boards, but like, they’re ridiculously expensive and it was over my budget,” said Lumpkin. “So next time, I want to pitch it to the Chamber of Commerce and get them to sponsor a majority of the events so we can pay for more signage. And I do want more tables and tents out here.”

The turnout for this event was more than Lumpkin could imagine as this was the first event she had ever put on. She hopes to put on more ImpactX events in the future, with the goal of making each one better than the previous one.

“I’d love to even make it bigger,” Lumpkin said. “We were actually supposed to have about 20 nonprofits come out. So next time, we’re gonna have more tents, more nonprofits [and] more food, more opportunities for the students.”

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Jeffrey Hrunka
Jeffrey Hrunka, Eagle News Assistant Sports Editor
Jeffrey Hrunka is a junior double majoring in communications and journalism with a concentration in public relations. Jeffrey is from Fort Myers where his interest in sports journalism originated after falling in love with the world of motorsports. When he’s not working for Eagle News, he is usually spending time with friends, watching the New York Giants lose, or chilling in the pool.

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