Straight From the Hearth: Lean in and Make Your Ideas a Reality in 2022

Jan. 25, 2022

January is a month to reflect, look to the future, and map out our goals. With the ringing in of the new year we should be inspired by all the possibilities and look forward to the new things we can learn, create, and do. In this spirit, I direct you to the words of Nelson Mandela, “There is no passion to be found playing small and settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living.”

In this new year we encourage you to explore your ideas and solutions for a better world. This can be scary, and it is easy to doubt your abilities, succumb to fear, and choose inaction over action. However, if you strive to live the life you are capable of living, you’ll see that you have resources and tools at your disposal to succeed, to learn from failure, and to be resilient in the face of adversity. Let FORGE be part of your journey and help you build a path forward to change the world.

To see how FORGE can help you, let’s take a quick journey together. The year is 2030, you’ve graduated from the University of Arizona (hooray!) and are getting settled into your career. Perhaps you are a teacher, a lawyer, a startup founder, or a doctor. Regardless of your chosen career, on a daily basis, you interact with other people, communicate to a variety of audiences, analyze complex situations, make decisions, try new ideas, fail magnificently, and pivot your work to adjust. You are well prepared to adapt and thrive with these tasks because you developed an entrepreneurial mindset during your time at the University of Arizona.

Now, you may be thinking, how does entrepreneurial mindset come into play? Humor me for a moment, and I’ll explain. An entrepreneurial mindset includes a variety of competencies and skills like creative thinking, collaboration, problem-solving, critical thinking, opportunity identification, comfort with risk, and initiative. These types of skills apply to all disciplines and are highly desired by employers because they demonstrate that you can identify problems, opportunities, and develop solutions that will add value to the world. At FORGE, this is our specialty. This is what we do. We help you learn these skills through venture development programs and services.

We encourage you to connect with us to learn more and join our community of founders, mentors, and venture champions. For example, you can:

  • Drop in and visit us at Resilience FORGE on campus in ENR2 S120A (right next to the Slot Canyon Café). Office hours Mondays and Wednesdays from 10 am – 2 pm and Thursdays 2 pm – 5 pm.
  • Enroll in Venturing 101, a set of online mini-courses that will help you learn more about the components of an entrepreneurial mindset and the business basics for starting a venture.
  • Attend a Founder Collaborative workshop to gain knowledge on a venture topic and build community with other founders.
  • Connect with mentors at one of our monthly Mentor Meet Ups.
  • Request a personal or group consultation to learn more and get connected to FORGE mentors and resources. 
  • Join our team as a FORGE Ambassador to share your entrepreneurial story with peers across campus
  • Submit an application for the Venture Well E-Team program for your chance to unlock up to $25,000 in funding to support the advancement of a novel engineering-based innovation!


-- Paul Valdez, Program Manager, FORGE Student Venture Pathways