School of Management’s entrepreneurship program recognized as among the best in U.S.
School of Management’s entrepreneurship program recognized as among the best in U.S.April 09, 2003Cynthia J. Moritzcjmoritz@syr.edu
The School of Management’s Entrepreneurship and Emerging Enterprises (EEE) Program has been named one of the best national programs for aspiring entrepreneurs by Entrepreneur magazine. SU’s program appears in the second tier of 12 schools in the April rankings, which researched more than 700 entrepreneurship programs nationwide for the study’s first-time publication.
“We are enthused about this initial ranking, in that it validates our having a leading-edge program,” says Michael H. Morris, Witting Chair in Entrepreneurship and executive director of the program. “We are also a bit humbled in terms of some of the schools behind us. But the challenge is to get to the top-for SU to redefine the field of entrepreneurship education.”
The study was conducted from September to December 2002 by TechKnowledge Point Corp. of Santa Barbara, Calif. While a 1970 survey of business schools found only 16 entrepreneurship programs offered, TechKnowledge Point found more than 875 current entrepreneurship programs at colleges and universities in the U.S.
More than 30 criteria were used in the study, including course offerings, teaching and research faculty, business-community outreach, research centers and institutes, degrees and certificates offered and faculty and alumni evaluations. In addition, many institutions, including SU, responded to surveys designed to allow program directors, faculty and alumni to rank their own entrepreneurship programs against others.
Entrepreneurship efforts began within the School of Management in the early 1990s, following a market study of other entrepreneurship programs in which more than 200 programs were examined in terms of curriculum, organization and management.
The first undergraduate course, Introduction to Entrepreneurship, was established in 1994. Following the addition of several new courses, both an undergraduate major and an undergraduate minor (for non-business majors) in entrepreneurship were established in 1998. In 1999, a course titled Strategic and Entrepreneurial Management was made a requirement for all undergraduate business majors. A course titled Visiting Executives in Entrepreneurship was added in the same year. Endowed by SU alumnus John Couri, this course brings successful entrepreneurs to the campus to discuss specific aspects of entrepreneurship. More recently, courses in Entrepreneurial Marketing, Emerging Enterprise Consulting, Imagination and Entrepreneurial Finance have been created. Undergraduate students also compete to participate in the Kauffman Entrepreneurial Internship Program.
For graduate students, a new MBA concentration in Entrepreneurship, Innovation and Global Leadership was created this year. In addition, a capstone at the MBA level titled Project in Global Entrepreneurial Management (GEM) was introduced this semester.
The EEE Program also has an active research agenda. An annual entrepreneurship research program awards grants to faculty pursuing timely and pertinent academic research projects. The University is the editorial home to two academic journals in the field, the Journal of Developmental Entrepreneurship and the Journal of Entrepreneurial Finance and Business Ventures.
One of the prize programs sponsored by EEE is called the Experiential Classroom. Supported with a grant from the Kauffman Foundation, each year faculty come to SU from all over the country to learn how to teach entrepreneurship. The program is delivered by SU faculty together with a number of top scholars and teachers in the field. In recent years, the EEE Program has also organized and hosted a number of entrepreneurship conferences.
Another area of emphasis are the community outreach efforts coordinated by the Falcone Center for Entrepreneurship. Created in 1998 with an endowment from alumnus Michael J. Falcone, the center supports community programs such as Women Igniting the Spirit of Entrepreneurship, the Syracuse Entrepreneurs Bootcamp and a technology commercialization initiative in the Syracuse area.
In addition to a School of Management Capstone Competition each semester, the EEE Program sponsors an annual Syracuse Business Plan Competition. Endowed with a $1 million gift from Henry A. Panasci Jr., teams from departments and schools across the campus compete each spring for $40,000 in prize money.
Morris notes, “The best is yet to come. The Syracuse campus is filled with entrepreneurial potential. Our goal is a university-wide concept of entrepreneurship, where we work with departments and schools to encourage entrepreneurial thinking and acting among all of our students. We believe we can get there sooner, not later.”