ClassE FY16 (L to R): Val Zendeli, Jaz Monahan, Erin Anderson, Katie Brush, Whitney Janssen, Jenny Hildebrand, Hannah Houston, Kaitlyn Pearson, Kristen Doty, Kyle Packer, Morgan Hampton, Ryan Chambers, Matt Vaselovic, Cole Diepholz and Jake Noelker

  Growing Entrepreneurs - Nurturing Success


The first  1 1/2 weeks was dedicated to business etiquette,the importance of asking good questions,making the right first impressions and getting to know each other a little better.  Thanks to all who helped in this task. 

Visitors In Class - I also want to thank Todd Vilardo and Aaron Hale for visiting the class and showing community support. Remember, we LOVE to have class visitors and all are welcome.

Mentors Wanted - We need to identify the mentors for this year's class. Please contact me at 
if you are willing to explore the gift of sharing your time and expertise with the students. 

ClassE Schedule - 8-9:30 am
Location: Lifespan Ctr. (unless noted below)
11021 E. Cty. Rd. 800 N. Charleston (Loxa Road just NE of the hospital)

Monday, 8/31 - Brainstorming Process for Group Business Ideas, How to Write a Thank You

Tuesday 9/1 - Adams Memorials Tour
with Wendall and Carol Adams
1286 W. State St., Charleston

Wednesday 9/2 - The History of Coles County
with Bill Lair 

Thurs. 9/3 - The Men Who Built America
Lifespan Theater with Gary Philippi

Fri 9/4- Group Business Feasibility

Students learned more about each other by playing ClassE Bingo, Ball Toss Questions and other ice breakers.
Bob Schultz of Schultz Investment Company taught the students Dale Carnegie's Visualization Exercise that helps you to start and carry on a conversation with others. The basic of greetings and a good handshake was also covered.
Lake Land College's Sue Nugent taught the students how to use Canvas, an on-line course management program where they will be uploading their homework.
Krista Taylor gave us a tour of our home base facility, the Lifespan Center. This fabulous facility provides valuable intergenerational community services for the region.
Ask your students about our True Colors Training. This program is a communication and temperament model that provide a way for people to understand themselves and others quickly and with ease. This skill will help them become better managers and team members. The plates show their personal combination of thinking preferences. 
Dr. Jill Nilsen spoke to the students about creating a great first impression. They discussed interviewing dos and don't and how to introduce people to each other.
Dr. Jill Nilsen taught the class about creating a positive first impression. Then the class discussed interview do's and don'ts and how to make formal introductions.
True Colors - Part II. Using what we have learned to manage and communicate more clearly. These students planned an exciting trip to Hawaii for employees that are orange which is their least dominant or pale color. Then we worked with a balanced team where all colors were represented and all seem to agree those teams got great results.

Class Investors

Advanced Digital Solutions 

SEED Center at Eastern Illinois University

City of Charleston

City of Mattoon

Coldwell Banker Real Estate

Commercial Electric

Curry Construction

Dau Consulting

Diepholz Auto Group

Ealy's Real Estate Appraisals

Eastern Illinois Properties

First Federal Savings & Loan Association

First Mid-Illinois Bank and Trust

First Neighbor Bank

Flesor's Candy Kitchen

General Electric

Gilbert, Metzger & Madigan LLP

Jerome C. Groniger

Howell Paving, Inc.

Innovative Staff Solutions

Inyart Tire and Auto

Lake Land College

Lifetime Eye Care

Lorenz Supply Company

Marketing by Jones, LLC

McDonald's of Coles County 

Mid-Illinois Concrete, Inc.

Pinnacle Foods Group, LLC

Reed's Fly-On Farming


Rural King Supply

Sarah Bush Lincoln 

Health System

Scholes Trucking, Inc.

Eli & Ann Sidwell

Slumberland Furniture

The Sparks Foundation

Unique Home Properties

United Graphics, Inc.

Upchurch Group, Inc.

Vantage Outsourcing

Veolia Environmental Services

Wells Fargo Advisors

West & Company, LLC

Wireless Mikes 

Other Financial Contributors
Coles County Council on Aging Lifespan Center
Class Hosts




Due to the increased enrollment, the class will meet at the Coles County Council on Aging LifeSpan Center for the entire year. We will still be touring businesses 2-3 days per week. Thank you LifeSpan for this great partnership.


Coles County Council on Aging Lifespan Center