Susan Amat Visits The Venture Center

Susan Amat, Ph.D., an international leader in entrepreneurial education visited Little Rock this past week. The Venture hosted Dr. Amat for discussions on strengthening the entrepreneurial ecosystem in Little Rock.

Her visit kicked off with a casual, invite-only cocktail hour at Samantha's Taproom. Startup founders, mentors and business leaders networked and enjoyed a beautiful evening on the patio at the local restaurant.

While in town, Dr. Amat held discussions with The Venture Center team about the next stage of development of the center including the global VC FinTech Accelerator . Dr. Amat encouraged the community to recognize that Little Rock is now an international center of FinTech innovation because of The Venture Center's collaboration with FIS.

In addition, Dr. Amat met with economic development officials from across the City and leaders from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock (UALR) to discuss the impact a vibrant entrepreneurial community can have on Central Arkansas. 

A key point that Dr. Amat emphasized was the importance of clear communication and a direct path for engaging students from high school through college to introduce them to entrepreneurism. With a clear pathway, Dr. Amat said that students will connect to the business community. This connection will lead to better retention of the tech talent that we are already producing right here in the State.

Before leaving town, Dr. Amat took time to mentor key Venture Center startup founders to help them with specific challenges they faced in moving their businesses forward.

Little Rock has been making strong strides forward, but there is still a long way to go. We have huge potential right here in our back yard. If we leverage that potential and capitalize on it, Little Rock will be the beacon for what is possible by focused acceleration of high-growth companies.

Who is Susan Amat?

Dr. Amat is the founder of the Miami-based Venture Hive.  She is a serial entrepreneur, having built businesses in the entertainment industry for over a decade, including the first CD-ROM magazine and a national television show.

After completing her MBA, Dr. Amat developed pediatric health monitoring products and earned a Ph.D. in Strategic Entrepreneurship (coursework in industrial engineering, business, and education).

While teaching at the University of Miami, she founded The Launch Pad, which was considered the top model in entrepreneurship education. Her program and platform was replicated throughout the United States as Blackstone LaunchPads.

Dr. Amat actively speaks about entrepreneurship education internationally. She has consulted with the US State Department, The Kauffman Foundation, and the World Bank on ecosystem development. In 2012, Dr. Amat was honored as a 'Champion of Change' at the White House.
(taken from