Dane G. Hansen Foundation_large
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For Immediate Release
April 4, 2022

Contact: Sarah LaRosh
Director, E-Community Engagement
NetWork Kansas
[email protected]

The Dane G. Hansen Foundation will remove the financial barrier to communities participating in the YEC Series by granting the sanction application fee as well as providing an allocation of prize funds to each county’s event. This grant allows all 26 counties in the northwest region to have equal access to participate in the YEC Series, which will strengthen the entrepreneurial ecosystem and provide the region’s youth with valuable knowledge and experiences.

The grant will provide $3,000 to each non E-Community, to go towards YEC expenses. $1,500 will cover their sanction application fee and $1,500 will go towards prize money. Communities are also allowed to gather local sponsorships to go towards other expenses, if desired.

Sarah LaRosh, Director of Entrepreneurship Engagement with NetWork Kansas states, “This has been a dream of mine for YEC to be as common in area schools as debate, basketball, or drama. The skills youth learn though the YEC process helps in all areas of life. I firmly believe that this grant and the partnership with NetWork Kansas will be life changing for many students in Northwest Kansas. This is a tremendous opportunity for Northwest Kansas and I am honored to be part of this!”

This year, during the 2021-2022 YEC season, over 1,000 students will compete in 51 local events across the state. Of the 51 events, four events were hosted by non E-Communities. Three of those events were held in Northwest Kansas. Northwest Kansas has the hunger for youth entrepreneurship and this grant will allow even more communities in the region the opportunity to host a YEC event.

The KEC state championship will be held all day on April 28 at K-State University, in the student union. First place winners of local YEC events, plus fifteen wildcard entries, will advance to the day of competition. Businesses will compete in four rounds of live mock board rooms and a separate, optional tradeshow, They will be scored on entrepreneurial characteristics. Over $75,000 in prize money is available, in addition to scholarships. This competition is generously sponsored by the Kansas Masonic Foundation.

““The trustees are pleased to provide funding to expand participation in the Youth Entrepreneurship Challenge, said Doug Albin, trustee of the Dane G. Hansen Foundation. “Dane Hansen was an amazing entrepreneur. His interest in meeting economic and community opportunities through new business development led to his success and ultimately the creation of his foundation. We have witnessed the many benefits of the YEC program for students in our region, including team building, concept development, and public presentation skills.”

For more information about the YEC Series, please contact Bailee Henry, Product Manager, E-Community Programs at 785-844-1706 or [email protected]

Learn more about the Dane G. Hansen Foundation at

NetWork Kansas, a 501c3 nonprofit organization, is dedicated to making entrepreneurship a priority for economic and community development in the State of Kansas. NetWork Kansas connects aspiring entrepreneurs, emerging and established businesses, to a deep network of business-building and community development resource organizations across the state. NetWork Kansas facilitates the development of an entrepreneurial ecosystem within participating communities through the E-Community Partnership. Contributing factors to successful development include the availability of financial capital, support by local leadership, and development of educational resources. All of these factors combine to increase entrepreneurial activity in participating towns, leading to increased startup activity, business expansion, job creation, and more. NetWork Kansas is also the home of e2 Entrepreneurial Ecosystems (e2) and Entrepreneurial Growth Ventures. Visit:




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