The Richard M. and Helen DeVos Center for Entrepreneurship & Innovation is dedicated to developing best practices in entrepreneurship education and community engagement that enhance and impact the creation of new ventures and opportunities.
Shorouq Almallah is the Director at the Richard M. and Helen DeVos Center for Entrepreneurship & Innovation (CEI) at Grand Valley State University. She joined CEI in June, 2010. In this role, she provides the necessary leadership and strategic direction for the centers management, program development, curriculum development, marketing, public relations and community outreach. She is responsible for resource facilitation to entrepreneurs, program development, curriculum development, project management, organizational processes, and grant solicitation and management. Previously, she served as Knowledge Resource Manager for the Family Owned Business Institute where she played an integral role in supporting the Institutes research, mission and initiatives. Almallah has over ten years of experience in designing and coordinating the entrepreneurial education programs in West Michigan. She is responsible for talent development initiatives on the University level and the region by working with community organizations on collaborative events and programs. She serves on a number of advisory and steering committees including the Annual Collaboration for Entrepreneurship, the West Michigan Colleges and Universities Group (WMCUG), the West Michigan Foundations Endowments & Family Offices (FEFO), and Grand Rapids Economic Development Partners Group (ESO). Shorouq is fluent in both Arabic and English. She earned a Bachelor of Arts from Indiana University in English and Linguistics, with a minor in Middle East Studies, and a Masters of Information Science from Indiana University
Dr. Tim Syfert
Tim Syfert teaches entrepreneurship and small business management, international business, and organizational strategy at Grand Valley State University to both undergraduate and graduate students. Tim has over 25 years business experience in key strategic roles at Timex Watch Company, Haworth, Royal Consumer Business Products, Sherwin Williams, Roadway Express Trucking Company, and Johnson Controls. His work at these companies resulted in several domestic and international patents for many products that are currently in production around the world. As a designer and business consultant, Tim has helped inventors and start-up companies develop new products, expand product portfolios, and launch new business ventures. He is currently developing his own new venture blending alcohols for use in sangria. Tim has a bachelors degree in business from Oklahoma State University, a masters in business administration in strategic planning from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institutes Lally School of Management and Technology, and a doctorate in organization development from Capella University.
Amy Gascon joined the Richard M. and Helen DeVos Center for Entrepreneurship & Innovation in November 2014 as the Office Coordinator. In this role, she helps maintain the daily functions of the office. Before coming to Grand Valley, Amy held a variety of positions in the local non-profit field including time with AmeriCorps, United Way and Girl Scouts. Amy is a graduate of GVSU, receiving her Bachelor of Arts degree in Communication Studies.
Affiliate Faculty of Instruction
Matt Larson has an extensive background in banking, business consulting, project management, and higher education. Previously, Matt owned bookkeeping/payroll, vending, technology consulting, and crowdfunding businesses. As a consultant, he has worked with multiple start-ups and businesses while coordinating a local inventor’s network and volunteers his time with Start-Up Weekends. Matt's entrepreneurship journey continues with his development of an open source mobile platform. In addition, Matt is Co-founder and COO of CampusStarter, a crowdfunding platform for college entrepreneurs. CampusStarter received outside investment and support from eMerge Xcelerate, a start-up accelerator in Grand Rapids, MI and was acquired by Hubbub a London based crowdfunding company in June of 2016. He is a graduate of Western Michigan University with degrees in Finance, Master of Arts in Career & Technical Education and a Master of Business Administration.
Entrepreneur in Residence
Matt is the Founder of FounderCo after being a co-founder at Fathom, a Techstars Mobility company. Alongside Fathom, Matt took part in the Yale Entrepreneurial Institute and was the Entrepreneur-in-Residence at Hope College from 2015-2018. Matt has a passion for helping other entrepreneurs become more impactful and is willing to help wherever possible.
MVE-Lab Project Manager
CEO Club President
NEU Magazine Editor