BlumShapiro staff in Shelton to help university students

Nearly 50 students at Fairfield University have spent most of the 2013-14 academic year preparing to compete in the institution’s annual business plan competition.

As they enter the final stages of forming and presenting their new business ideas, they will rely on the advice of faculty members and business experts to help them, including employees of Shelton-based BlumShapiro — Tom Walsh, a partner, and Patrick Dunleavey, a manager.

“As the official accounting and finance advisors for the Fairfield University Business Plan Competition, BlumShapiro is proud to support the entrepreneurial spirit of these highly motivated and creative students,” said Walsh, a resident of Trumbull.

Student entrepreneurship

The Fairfield University Business Plan Competition was created three years ago by the Charles F. Dolan School of Business to meet the growing interest in entrepreneurship among students.

“Listening to their plans and giving them our advice on financial planning, financial presentation and overall business plan development provides all of us — the students and advisors — the opportunity to develop best practices for tomorrow’s business leaders,” said Dunleavey, also of Trumbull.

The annual competition is open to all undergraduates. This year, 10 to 12 teams will compete in two categories: the venture track for new businesses with a profit focus and the social track for new organizations with a social mission.

Each category competes separately with its own judges and prizes, and a total of $20,000 will be awarded to several teams. The final judging and awards presentation takes place April 14 at Fairfield University.