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Components Of A Comprehensive Engineering Entrepreneurship Program

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2002 Annual Conference


Montreal, Canada

Publication Date

June 16, 2002

Start Date

June 16, 2002

End Date

June 19, 2002



Conference Session

Entrepreneurship Education for Engineers

Page Count


Page Numbers

7.314.1 - 7.314.7



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Paper Authors

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Robert Baum

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Karen Thornton

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David Barbe

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

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Session 3454

Components of a Comprehensive Engineering Entrepreneurship Program

David F. Barbe, J. Robert Baum, Karen S. Thornton University of Maryland, College Park

1. Introduction

This paper is based on the Hinman Campus Entrepreneurship Opportunities (CEOs) Program at the University of Maryland. A former Dean of Engineering created the original concept for the program, and the benefactor, after whom the program is named, is an engineering alumnus and successful entrepreneur. A committee having strong representation from the business and engineering schools and resident life accomplished the initial planning for the initiative, and the operating program is co-managed by the engineering and business schools. The program was designed to attract undergraduate students with a strong entrepreneurial spirit, to create a sense of community and cooperation among these like-minded students, to impact the way that they think about their careers and destinies and to prepare them to start businesses.

Academic year 2001-2002 is the second year that the program has been operating. In the first year, 65 students were admitted, and in the second year the number grew to 108 students . It is not envisioned that the program will involve a larger number of students, but rather that the admission requirements will continue to be raised so that only students with an exceptional interest and dedication to starting companies and who will contribute to furthering the program will be accepted. Admission is based on GPA and essays discussing reasons the applicant wants to be admitted to the program, the applicant’s business ideas, and contributions that the applicant can potentially make to the program.

Although primarily designed for juniors and seniors, some outstanding sophomores are gradually integrated into the program. Academic disciplines of the current class are almost evenly distributed in thirds among engineering, business and all other majors combined, and there is considerable ethnic and gender diversity among the class. Because the first cohort of CEOS are now seniors with a year’s experience in the program, more governance is being given to the students, and this is expected to expand in the future.

2. Components of the Program

When the program was planned, the primary program components were envisioned to be a community environment, a seminar series and a series of entrepreneurship courses; however, as the program has evolved, many other important components have been added, primarily because of demand from the students. The components of the comprehensive program that have resulted are listed in Table 1. The program has evolved significantly since its inception, and some of the components were discussed in an earlier paper. 1 Newer components will be emphasized in this paper.

Proceedings of the 2002 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2002, American Society for Engineering Education

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Baum, R., & Thornton, K., & Barbe, D. (2002, June), Components Of A Comprehensive Engineering Entrepreneurship Program Paper presented at 2002 Annual Conference, Montreal, Canada. 10.18260/1-2--10194

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