Beaver Crossing, Neb.
Major: Hospitality, Restaurant & Tourism Management
Minor: Animal Science & Engler Agribusiness Entrepreneurship
Graduation Date: May 2018
Business: Star E. Enterprises. Creating a business using the buildings and facilities built on our family property seems like a natural diversification for our fourth-generation family farm. As a long-time horse owner and competitor, I have an idea to combine my love for horses with working on our family farm. Primarily, I intend to create and establish Star E Enterprises, L.L.C., including a Horse Motel to accommodate both horses and their haulers. I also have plans to simultaneously start a Pony Party business, where children and/or adults could come and enjoy their birthdays or special events while riding our horses of all sizes. Additionally, my business will offer educational clinics and day camps for interested horse enthusiasts of all ages. Our location along Interstate 80 seems ideal for these purposes.
What is your story?
I am the oldest of three girls in my family. My teenage twin sisters and I are the fourth generation to live and work on our family farm in rural Beaver Crossing, Nebraska. Through homeschooling, our parents gave us a strong Christian foundation and provided opportunities for us to experience life beyond the classroom, instilling in us an entrepreneurial spirit. Traveling and competing nationally within the American Paint Horse Association gave me the opportunity to cultivate a network of relationships throughout the country, which are beneficial to me today. As young girls we started our own cow-calf operation, which has expanded over the years, as well as our own horse herd. In addition to my passion for livestock, I enjoy music through singing, playing acoustic violin, electric violin, bass guitar, and acoustic guitar. I thrive in non-conformist/outside-of-the-box environments and desire to use these characteristics to operate my own businesses. As a UNL student, the most impactful and exciting thing that I have been involved with is the Engler Entrepreneurship Program. It has allowed me to create my business as well as a network of friends. The Engler Experience has given me the necessary tools and mindset to start my own journey.
Who is your entrepreneurial inspiration OR biggest hero?
The person who has given me the most entrepreneurial inspiration is my Dad. Over the years my Dad has been successful creating new agricultural related businesses to diversify our family farming operation. I admire his values, vision, and opportunistic spirit.
If your story were made into a movie, what actor/actress would portray you and why?
Emma Stone could play my role in the story of my life. I like how she can capture the essence of a character through her acting. She typically portrays women of strong morals and values, who are motivated to make a difference and who are driven to succeed. I also think her quirky and witty sense of humor relates to mine quite well.
What advice would you give to a student starting their entrepreneurial journey?
My advice to a young entrepreneur is that it’s okay not to have a plan mapped out right away; one will come around when the time is right. Brainstorm, write down things that inspire you, motivate you, but also let it be something you have a passion for. Work isn’t work if it’s something you love doing every day! Also, surround yourself with people who share your same vision, as well as people who come from different backgrounds to allow you to get various perspectives. Finally, never be afraid to try new things, educate yourself, and remember failure isn’t the end; it could be the start of a new beginning!