From starting a lawn care business serving two homes in his neighborhood to earning national recognition, North Central College business management and entrepreneurship major Moe Mitchell ’20 has found a sure path to growing his commercial interests.
Nonprofit organization Future Founders selected Mitchell as one of 18 Future Founders fellows for 2019. Mitchell and his company Moe Mow’s, which he began at age 15 and still runs while enrolled at North Central, stood out among a pool of 18- to 30-year-old entrepreneurs from across the country. He joins fellows from 10 different states in industries ranging from consumer products to foods and services to technology.
Mitchell had previous experience with Future Founders and was inspired to get more involved.
“I pitched my business at Future Founders’ annual pitch competition last year,” Mitchell said. “At the competition, the 2018 fellows explained the fellowship in depth. I instantly knew I wanted to be a part of it because of how prestigious Future Founders is as well as the mentoring and growth potential it would offer.”
Applicants for the fellowship complete a thorough series of online forms as well as submit self-made videos about their businesses. If they make it through the initial stages, they interview with the CEO and COO of Future Founders as well as a fellow from the previous year.
Future Founders highlighted Mitchell’s creation of a mobile app to streamline his services for customers, lawn care crews and Mitchell himself.
“Our app has three interfaces and is very similar to a ride sharing app,” said Mitchell. “The idea is to make it as convenient as possible for a customer, while letting me organize and handle day-to-day operations and help my crews put together their daily work schedule.”
As a Future Founders fellow, Mitchell will spend the next year absorbing lessons in running a business from a variety of valuable sources.
“The program is essentially a business accelerator,” Mitchell said. “The main things I’ll be participating in are mentoring, entrepreneurship retreats, a peer community of entrepreneurs and volunteer opportunities like speaking events.” Mitchell will also be required to keep Future Founders updated on his progress, including creating a business write-up.
North Central has given Mitchell the flexibility to keep running his business while enrolled in school and participating in athletics, and his experiences at the College are also enhancing his abilities as a business owner.
“The classes I’ve taken at North Central have helped me grow substantially as an entrepreneur,” he said. “I’ve been able to take the material right out of the classes and implement them into my business.”
In addition to courses in entrepreneurship and an award-winning Social Impact Entrepreneurship class taught by Assistant Vice President and Center for Social Impact Co-Director Jeremy Gudauskas ‘99/M ’11, Mitchell is also gaining expertise from courses in accounting, marketing and web design.
“I haven’t needed any assistance with my bookkeeping after finishing Accounting 201 and 202, and my web design course enabled me to create a better website and gain a better understanding of what goes into coding an app,” said Mitchell.
When not in class, Mitchell takes part in North Central Enactus’ mentoring program and competes on the Cardinal men’s wrestling team. He is also working on getting a real estate license.
Real estate is a new challenge that illustrates how Mitchell is looking to the future and always trying to better himself. He’s certainly not done with Moe Mow’s, and while his long-term plans are still under wraps, they’re a source of much excitement.
“Running a business has truly been a breathtaking and humbling experience for me,” said Mitchell. “I am always astounded by the growth I make personally and in my business. Moe Mow’s has transformed into something entirely different and I am always thinking about what’s next and how we can keep making our service and technology better.”
Moe Mitchell being awarded at the Future Founders pitch competition by President and CEO Scott Issen.