The I&E Network
Recognizing that new approaches to economic development are essential to ensure a strong economic future, the McAllen Chamber of Commerce, through its Inventors and Entrepreneurs (I&E) Network supports the development of new products, services and technologies in the McAllen area. The program is focused on creating local wealth by growing and cultivating McAllen-based assets.
The I&E uses a collaborative model to energize local inventors and entrepreneurs to build and further develop the local economy based on strengths and assets identified locally. The I&E is held every fourth Thursday from 6pm to 8pm at the McAllen Chamber. As part of the model, the I&E nurtures the entrepreneurial strengths of participants by building upon the following guiding elements:
Learn. The program creates entrepreneurial capacity in the region by presenting concepts and tools required to advance innovative projects.
Network. The program increases the social capital of participants by facilitating and encouraging the connection of participants with other inventors, entrepreneurs, agencies, universities and experts of the area.
Act. The program is an action-oriented setting that challenges and rewards participants to act on their ideas.
At every session participants discuss individual project accomplishments and road blocks on moving their projects to market. Fellow colleagues are asked about suggestions or leads to overcome the obstacles presented. Then, the group gets a break to connect with others inventors, entrepreneurs or representatives of local resources. The last part of the meeting is devoted to a presentation by an expert on a topic relevant to the road map of getting your idea or business off the ground.