Skip to Main Content

Search

Calendar

«September 2016»
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
28293031123
45678910
9/10/2016 6:00 PM - 11:00 PM
17853

Drive-In Movie

Featuring: Finding Dory and X-men: Apocalypse

Read more
1112
9/12/2016 11:30 AM
55722

Speaker Series: Anthony Miller

Monday, Sept. 12, 11:30 a.m., Oshkosh Riverside Campus | FVTC Manager Anthony Miller discusses the importance of soft skills in today’s educational and work environment

Read more
13
9/13/2016 11:30 AM - 12:30 PM
56249

Troop Talk

Troop Talk is held every other Tuesday, and will help you transition from military service to college to employment.

Read more
1415
9/15/2016 11:30 AM
55723

Speaker Series: Bob Biebel

Thursday, Sept. 15, 11:30 a.m., Oshkosh Riverside Campus | Learn how to get more out of life and to develop a better understanding of the diverse world in which we live

Read more
1617
181920
9/20/2016 11:00 AM - 1:00 PM
20368

Tuesday is Sundae: Free Ice Cream!

Tuesday, Sept. 20: Free ice cream for Facebook fans of Fox Valley Technical College! (current FVTC students only)

Read more
2122
9/22/2016 11:30 AM - 1:00 PM
53859

On Campus: Herzing University

Thinking of transferring to Herzing University?

Read more
2324
252629
30
9/30/2016 9:00 AM - 2:30 PM
46610

Manufacturing Career Expo

Manufacturing Career Expo, in partnership with Miller Electric Mfg. Co. | Friday, September 30

Read more
1
24
56
10/6/2016 5:30 PM - 7:30 PM
57580

Dangers of Social Media

Learn how to navigate and manage the apps that are most popular among youth today.

Read more
78

FVTC eConnect Newsletter Sign-up








CAPTCHA image
Enter the code shown above:

Manufacturing

Focus on the Entrepreneur: Grassroots

Focus on the Entrepreneur: Grassroots

Spring 2013

Mar 1, 2013

Making it Work

Making machine parts for friends turned into a thriving business in just two years for one local entrepreneur, thanks to training at Fox Valley Technical College.

“To be honest, I didn’t expect this business to take off so quickly,” says Chuck Duginski, owner of Grassroots Shop Services in Neenah, a quality-focused industrial repair and machine services shop. “We’re already looking into adding more space, but we don’t want to grow faster than what we can handle.”

Grassroots Shop Services began in Duginski’s garage as a part-time hobby. “I was a machinist all my life and friends were always asking me for favors,” he recalls. “When a total stranger came to see me, the light bulb went on that this could be a full-time business.”

Before launching his new enterprise, Duginski looked into training options through the Venture Center at Fox Valley Technical College, at the insistence of his wife, Mary Beth. “I was a little intimidated at first,” he states. “However, the e-seed™ program quickly taught a hands-on, 50-year-old guy like me how to run a business. Just learning to be aware of the different tax laws, for example, has saved my company a lot of money.”

Once launched, the business quickly outgrew his garage space. Within six months of moving into a larger space, Duginski hired his first employee, and six months later, his second. “Word has spread that we’re a quality shop, and we’re now in demand,” he says. “We have a full range of Computer Numerical Control (CNC) machines to handle every project. We want to be a company that keeps work in the United States rather than having it outsourced.”

Amy Pietsch, director of the Venture Center, points to Duginski as a true success story. “Chuck is a great person who had a vision, and then he took that dream and made it into a practical approach toward small business ownership,” she states. “The American economy needs more people like Chuck.”

The Venture Center is now working to encourage more entrepreneurship across the country by offering other colleges a license to provide the e-seed™ program in their areas. “More than 40 schools nationwide attended our launch last December,” Pietsch says. “Many of them are now taking the next steps in a train-the-trainer model to successfully implement the program.”

Duginski is also working with Pietsch to promote e-seed™. “In the future, I plan to go back to Fox Valley Technical College to attend some seminars and possibly receive more training,” he says. “I would do it now, but frankly, I just don’t have the time!”

E-seed™: Growing Entrepreneurs

Developed by Fox Valley Technical College, e-seed™ is a signature entrepreneur training program offered through the Venture Center. This hub of entrepreneurial activity has:

  • Launched more than 300 businesses, in industries like renewable energies, restaurants, organic clothing, eye care, home health care, retail, manufacturing, shipping and distribution, and many more.

  • Created a national training model that is being offered by other higher education institutions.