By KAELIN CLAY | OBU News Bureau
Since school began in August, students in Ouachita Baptist University’s Hickingbotham School of Business and Rogers Department of Communications have met on Tuesdays at 7 a.m. to relaunch the student-led Dr. Jack’s Coffee.
Dr. Jack’s was established in 2013, but the business struggled through the coronavirus pandemic and its aftermath. The new student leadership team is finalizing a business plan, working with a partner to create a website, and establishing a mission, all while keeping the business’ focus on service and students.
Joey Whisenhunt, a junior business administration/entrepreneurship and finance double major from Greenbrier, Ark., leads the 30-member team and sets out to create structure within the business. He plans and facilitates weekly meetings and oversees team projects, coordinating with student project managers and with Johan Eriksson, visiting instructor of business administration and director of entrepreneurship programs.
Whisenhunt said, “I was attracted to the Dr. Jack’s initiative after switching my emphasis to entrepreneurship and speaking with Johan Eriksson on how students could gain real-world business experience during their time as a student at Ouachita.”
Although Dr. Jack’s is in the process of a relaunch, many of the original aspects of the brand have maintained consistency. Madison Melcher, graphics team lead and senior business administration/entrepreneurship major from Rockwall, Texas, said she appreciates the roots of the student-established business, which she kept in mind when she organized the platform requirements for the website, determined the brand guidelines and assisted with the business plan.
“The Dr. Jack’s brand holds true to the original founders’ ideas. We’ve held on to the original logo for now, which is the face of Jack Conger, a former president of Ouachita,” Melcher said. “The brand expresses the deep roots of Ouachita and represents the tenacity and resilience of students. A student-led enterprise is no small feat to organize and sustain, so the Dr. Jack’s brand has tried to capture that all along the way.”
The emphasis on missions is a key component of the Dr. Jack’s business plan. One of the main goals of the business is to create a service-minded atmosphere in every meeting and representation of the business. The mission of Dr. Jack’s is to help provide evangelical connections and build houses in Honduras, where much of the coffee is grown.
A large portion of the team is set to travel to Honduras for a mission trip over spring break. They will lead worship, partake in street evangelism and build houses. Heather Brown, a senior finance, business administration/marketing and business administration/entrepreneurship triple major from Omaha, Texas, leads the organization and planning of this trip and its philanthropic impact.
“Through this experience, we hope to develop a relationship with the people there so that this can become a yearly trip for students to engage in and experience,” Brown said. “Our vision is to help create new microeconomies in these underdeveloped regions of the world.”
She added, “I’m super excited to see what God will share with us and through us on this trip. Not only is traveling to a third-world country a really cool experience, but it’s also a very humbling one.”
The team is accepting donations for various initiatives on their mission trip. For information about how to donate, visit obu.edu/give and specify your donation as “Dr. Jack’s mission” in the notes section.
To read more about Dr. Jack’s Coffee and its mission, follow on Instagram at @drjacks.coffee or on Facebook as Dr. Jack’s Coffeehouse. For information about Ouachita’s entrepreneurship program and the Hickingbotham School of Business, contact Johan Eriksson at firstname.lastname@example.org or (870) 245-5071.