The 19 Business Innovation Program (BIP) in the Center for Innovation, Business & Entrepreneurship (CIBE) traveled to Carmel, Indiana, to support Wabash College’s beloved 1832 Brew in its grand opening. Arriving 30 minutes before the official start, our group was the first to purchase lattes, coffee with extra espresso shots, and, most importantly, Lotus energy drinks. The morning session was a valuable experience as we met with alumni via networking and interacted with local Carmel residents by applying our Emotional Intelligence (EQ) training. We also learned a few sales tactics by walking around downtown and passing out flyers to every potential customer we could find.
I talked with various alumni, including Graham Gnagy ’22, Isaac Myers’21, and David Ross ’03- who all shared stories of their time at Wabash and provided the advice I will apply during my Wabash career. I also connected with fellow FIJI, recent graduate Latham Davies ’22- currently managing this new establishment. He promoted it on WISH-TV, spoke on behalf of the 1832 Brew, and in person afterward. Before our excursion, the founders of 1832 Brew came to Fusion 54 in Crawfordsville, IN, and talked with us about their journey from starting the local coffee shop to it becoming the staple it is now. We learned about their struggles, how they adapted to a changing environment, and what they do to ensure their business stays ahead of the competition. This trip was the first time our BIP group traveled off campus, and absorbing the advice from the 1832 Brew founders, with the lessons we learned from other speakers, was fascinating.
Nevertheless, the 1832 Brew did a fantastic job of marketing within their area of Carmel, utilizing chalkboards, promotional deals, and word-of-mouth advertising (us) to bring foot traffic through their shop. It was the biggest challenge they had discussed for the new location, so seeing them conquer that challenge was rewarding. I’m excited to continue being put in new environments and understanding how businesses are operated and led. Our office visits/field trips are the best part of the summer.