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Entrepreneurial Center Announces New Director

Center Gears Up to Increase Impact on the Region

October 17, 2016

Fred Wergeles is the new director of the Entrepreneurial Center.HARTFORD, Conn. ― The University of Hartford’s Entrepreneurial Center and Women’s Business Center is proud to announce the appointment of its new director, Fred Wergeles. An expert in strategic planning and competitive intelligence analysis, he brings an impressive history of supporting the growth of business in Connecticut.

Wergeles has over 25 years experience managing intelligence collection and analysis in support of strategic decision-making for the federal government and Pratt & Whitney, a division of United Technologies. In 2001, he opened his own practice, Fred Wergeles & Associates LLC, which specializes in strategic planning and competitive intelligence process improvement. He has advised companies, from Fortune 500 to small firms, to quickly and effectively improve their strategic planning and market assessment capabilities.

"I am truly excited to lead the Entrepreneurial Center at this increasingly dynamic time in the Hartford region,” Wergeles said, “There are a number of new activities, like the statewide Innovation Places initiative, that will expand the reach and impact of the local entrepreneurial ecosystem. The University is committed to supporting these efforts to spur business growth and to provide opportunities for our students to contribute to the region."

Currently an adjunct professor at the University of Hartford’s Barney School of Business, Wergeles teaches Market and Competitive Intelligence and Marketing Management in the MBA program, as well as entrepreneurship and marketing classes to undergraduates. He is the founder and president of the Connecticut Economic Gardening Group, an organization dedicated to providing business information, analysis, and marketing services to small businesses.

“The Barney School of Business and University of Hartford are delighted to have Fred Wergeles join the Entrepreneurial Center as its new director," said Barney School Dean Marty Roth. “Fred brings a wealth of education, business, and government experience to the director role. His connections in the Connecticut entrepreneurial networks, expertise counseling small businesses, and linkages at the University are valuable assets. Fred has the necessary leadership skills to ensure that the Center continues its high-quality programming for women, leaders of minority-owned businesses, and other small business owners. We look forward to the Center’s profile and reputation as a key entrepreneurship resource among current and future partners rising rapidly under Fred’s direction."

The Entrepreneurial Center, part of the University’s nationally renowned Barney School of Business, has become the place for Connecticut’s small business owners to turn when they need help starting, building, expanding, and succeeding. Under the direction of now-retired director, Sandra Cahill, its programs have grown in capacity and in local impact. Its largest program, the U.S. Small Business Administration-funded Women’s Business Center (WBC) managed by Milena Erwin, has been ranked in the top 20% of WBC’s nationwide.

The Center provides business advising, technical assistance, educational programs, and networking events to aspiring and existing small businesses throughout Connecticut. During 2015, the EC assisted in 63 business startups, over $1m in capital infusion, the creation of 169 jobs, and the retention of 1287 jobs. For more information, visit www.hartford.edu/ec.

The University of Hartford (UHart), centrally located in Connecticut, provides a distinctive educational experience across seven schools and colleges for one of the most diverse student bodies in New England. UHart’s faculty are attracted by the opportunity to mentor, challenge, and support students as they pursue degrees in more than 100 programs in the arts, humanities, science, business, engineering and technology, education, and health professions. Chartered in 1957, today’s UHart has more than 5,200 undergraduate and nearly 1,700 graduate students from 46 states and 61 countries, as well as 82,000 alumni living worldwide. Visit www.hartford.edu for more information.