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Unexpected Social Entrepreneur Path

May 21, 2021
5 min Read
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Mary Korch

“There are a lot of Creighton students in the business school who look at corporate as the only option. My life is an example that there are other options if you’re looking and willing to take the risk,” says former economics major and theology minor Mary Korch, BSBA’18.

Korch is a sales specialist and curriculum developer with Global U, a nine-month educational program for young Christian entrepreneurs. She describes Global U as a collaborative space for people who want to establish businesses or projects that are designed to make the world a better place. Korch teaches entrepreneurship classes and coaches students on business and project development. She also recruits prospective participants and offers spiritual mentorship.

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Mary Korch at work with her laptop

Never did she think she’d be on this path when she arrived on campus as a freshman. Law school was her ultimate education goal, and earning a business degree seemed like a logical path to this destination. But after attending multiple leadership seminars and listening to alumni and business executives speak about their respective fields, it became very apparent, very quickly, that she knew nothing about business. 

“I was terrified because for some reason I wanted to study business but realized I never wanted the lifestyles that I saw from recent graduates,” Korch says. 

While she was thankful the seminars helped her understand what she didn’t want in a career, she still had to determine what she did want. She discovered economics.

As someone who values learning different disciplines, economics’ multi-faceted nature (she says it’s a mixture of math, statistics, philosophy, political science, finance, psychology, history and more) appealed to her. She took more economics classes and participated in department programs, such as the Business, Faith and the Common Good Symposium. Gradually, her world view shifted, so much so that she decided not to submit her completed law school applications even though she had already taken the LSAT. 

“I decided I wanted to pursue this deeper idea of how we could use economics to change the world,” Korch says. “This dream was born at Creighton when I realized the power we have in the private sector to create opportunities for people to live a dignified life. Creighton made me ask the question, ‘How would Jesus operate in this economy?’ I saw examples, such as professors and guest speakers, who were actually changing the world and loving people well through their work. That was a huge inspiration to me.”

Korch, a Cedar Rapids, Iowa, native, found her way to Global U via a bike ride around Angkor Wat in Cambodia. After graduating a year early, she participated in World Race, a trip covering 11 countries in 11 months. She struck up an economics conversation – specifically, how economics can empower people as Christ would – with someone affiliated with Global U. Almost immediately, she had a reference to join its staff. 

Korch is more than a teacher at Global U; she is an entrepreneur and artist herself, having  established a Spanish tutoring program, a small business consulting operation and a retail venture in Nicaragua. She also owned a College Pro Painter franchise as a senior, and she recently signed a publishing contract for a novel she is writing. 

Business and the common good are great partners, natural even. “I see a lot of businesses in need of more ‘heart’ and a lot of ministry and nonprofits in need of more hard skills and strategies,” Korch says. “God wants us to be passionate and rely on Him in ways beyond our comprehension, but He also gave us beautiful minds and gifts, such as logic and strategy. A Creighton education is one that values both, and I’m thankful for that.”

To learn more about Korch’s novel and other arts projects, visit https://untoldstoryproject.org/SheSawInColor.

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