Field Center to feature student businesses in inaugural ‘Baruch Marketplace’

Caryl Anne Francia, Business Editor

Baruch College’s Lawrence N. Field Center for Entrepreneurship will hold its first “Baruch Marketplace” from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. on Dec. 6 through Dec. 8.

As the holiday shopping season goes underway, the event will allow students with their own ventures to sell their products to students at the center’s suite in NVC 2-140.

Field Center Executive Director Marlene Leekang drew inspiration for the event from the Union Square Holiday Market. She also wanted to come up with a way to showcase the college’s “inventive, innovative and creative” community of “student-preneurs.”

Applications for student businesses opened on Oct. 19 and closed on Nov. 12. There are 12 different businesses slated to participate at the Field Center event.

The event’s StartupTree page listed Tiffany Wu, who was part of the team that won the Field Center’s inaugural entrepreneurial mural contest, as a vendor at the event. Wu is the founder and designer of the Duckingnice brand.

Some of the products that will be sold over the three-day event include apparel, accessories, food items and Islamic goods. Wellness services will also be offered.

The Field Center itself offers programs and resources to help students regardless of their career path to develop and launch their small business ideas.

The event will include a distinctive venture that was launched through the Field Center’s programs. This business sells sustainable bricks for construction use.

“They actually do supplies too, but they’ll have a space to showcase what their goods are,” Leekang said. “They’re part of our programming. They put in the application. We’ll go ahead and showcase them.”

While the event will help the students’ businesses gain exposure and generate sales, the marketplace will also show the Baruch community what their peers are doing beyond their academic careers.

Leekang said the marketplace is meant to be a platform to give student businesses “a little bit of a step forward in what they’re already doing.”

“They may have families,” Leekang said about the students whose businesses will participate. “They may also have businesses, and they may be doing a lot more. We can support them, either by being a customer or being able to provide services.”

The businesses accept cash payment, with some accepting alternative methods such as payment cards or mobile payment services like Venmo.

The Field Center also intends to create a festive atmosphere to get people into the holiday spirit. Attendees will be able to play games and do winter-themed activities.

There will also be a bar for hot chocolate and candy canes, but supplies will be limited.

While planning is still in the works, Leekang said the event will have some kind of activity where students can earn a prize with a purchase.

“You’ll learn that your fellow peer has this sort of service or consumer good,” Leekang said. “You can probably support them by buying and get a little jumpstart on your holiday shopping.”