Silicon Prairie News

Prairie Portrait: Lucas Turner, Creighton University senior

Omaha November 13, 2012 by Michael Stacy Only 18 days until Big Omaha. Get your tickets before they sell out!

Name: Lucas Turner

Bio: I am a Kansas City native that thrives off of new opportunities, ideas and experiences. I enjoy life by meeting awesome people and by doing crazy things like skydiving, running marathons, traveling when my wallet allows and volunteering.

Title: Social entrepreneurship student at Creighton University

Age: 22

Residence: Omaha, Neb.

Twitter: @lucas_turner

Linkedin: linkedin.com/pub/lucas-turner

Intro music: "Daylight", by Matt & Kim

Silicon Prairie News: To what would you attribute your interest in social entrepreneurship? Can you pinpoint any particular individuals or experiences that sparked it?

Lucas Turner: I first became aware of social entrepreneurship as a potential career path after coming to Creighton. It sounded like the perfect major because it allowed my passions of business and engaging with people from all backgrounds to intertwine. Participating in service trips, working at Camp Laurel South in Maine and being involved in philanthropy events all have driven me to want to start something that will make a difference for everyone. Also, seeing how connected, personable and fun the startup communities are really excites me.

SPN: What are a couple of post-college opportunities that excite you most?

LT: As much as I love writing papers, I am very excited to graduate and put my education into action. The fact that I could be anywhere in the world come May is so awesome. I am looking at different events and community involvement positions with socially driven startups and nonprofits. I am also currently in the interviewing process for Teach for America and applying for teach abroad jobs. Eventually, I want to put my skills to work in launching my own small business. As for right now, I am just being a sponge and trying to soak up as much as I can from the entrepreneurial world.

SPN: What are some of the most valuable lessons you have taken from your experience interning with the Steier Group?

LT: The Steier Group has given me incredible insight to the nonprofit sector and the world of fundraising. I have learned some of the ins and outs of grant writing and capital campaigning. There is a lot of data collection within this field so I have become a pro at Excel. I can throw together a spreadsheet like nobody’s business. Overall, it has been a great learning experience and a valuable peek into the corporate side of business.

SPN: As someone who travels as your "wallet allows," what tips have you have for making the most of a trip on a shoestring budget??

LT: I could definitely use some help in the planning aspect of traveling on a budget. Sometimes my spontaneity and lack of solid plans can catch up with me. However, I definitely tap into my network when looking for a couch to crash on or for a free and friendly tour guide (absolutely take advantage of anything free). Also, the megabus has become my best friend. As for international travel, I stay at hostels and eat from street vendors instead of the “world famous” overpriced restaurants. It is easy to fall into tourist traps; when you see them, RUN AWAY!

SPN: Of the various extreme activities you enjoy, which serves as the best metaphor for entrepreneurship, and why?

LT: Skydiving is an excellent metaphor for the risky business of being an entrepreneur. Overcoming the fear to take the plunge, actually hurling yourself out of the plane, enjoying the exhilarating descent, praying that your parachute opens and landing safe on the ground with the biggest adrenaline rush and desire to do it again can compare to the crazy journey of starting a business. The whole process is about taking a chance, trusting the process, having fun and doing something that most people are scared to do.

Credits: Photo courtesy of Turner.


Prairie Portraits: To learn more about this series, see our introduction post, or visit our archives for past Prairie Portraits. To suggest an individual for a future Prairie Portrait, contact editor@siliconprairienews.com.


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