Asee peer logo

Graduate Certificates In Entrepreneurism ? A Survey Of Existing Programs As A Guide To Creating New Graduate Certificate Programs

Download Paper |


2007 Annual Conference & Exposition


Honolulu, Hawaii

Publication Date

June 24, 2007

Start Date

June 24, 2007

End Date

June 27, 2007



Conference Session

Patenting & IP Issues for Commercializing University-Developed Technology and Launching Innovative Technical Entrepreneurship Ventures in Universities

Tagged Division

Entrepreneurship & Engineering Innovation

Page Count


Page Numbers

12.790.1 - 12.790.9



Permanent URL

Download Count


Request a correction

Paper Authors


Ken Vickers University of Arkansas

visit author page

Ken Vickers is a Research Professor in Physics at the University of Arkansas, and has served as Director of the interdisciplinary Microelectronics-Photonics Graduate Program since April 1998. He worked for Texas Instruments from 1977 through March 1998 in integrated circuit fabrication engineering, the last seven years as Engineering Manager of the TI Sherman IC Wafer Fab. Professor Vickers’ technical accomplishments before leaving TI included chairmanship of the Sherman Site Technical Council for six years, election to Senior Member Technical Staff, chairmanship of two corporate level worldwide teams, and authorship of thirty issued patents. He received BS and MS degrees in Physics from the University of Arkansas in 1976 and 1978 respectively.

visit author page

author page

Elizabeth Kisenwether Pennsylvania State University

Download Paper |

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

Graduate Certificates in Entrepreneurism – A Survey of Existing Programs as a Guide to Creating New Graduate Certificate Programs


Graduate Certificate programs are emerging as a way for traditional graduate students to add a narrow academic concentration outside their primary degree area, and for the general citizenry easy access to graduate level instruction. In this paper, two universities that have been active in internal entrepreneurial engineering activities at both the undergraduate and graduate level will report on a cooperative survey of existing entrepreneurship and project management-focused Graduate Certificate programs made in preparation to creating their own programs.

These Graduate Certificate programs were examined for program ownership, number of hours required, internal or external student focus, classes required or offered as electives, time limits on degree completion, as well as several other program attributes of interest to the academic community. While the authors found a wide divergence of graduate certificate programs available in the U.S. and other countries, there were commonalities in structure and content that would be of interest to other universities considering creating such a graduate certificate in their own institution.

In this paper, the authors will present the results of their survey and will also discuss the process by which each institution is implementing their own graduate certificate. In addition to the published paper, the detailed data gathered during the survey will be made available to other educational institutions that are interested in considering this as a method to increase graduate level entrepreneurial activities in the internal and external communities that they serve.


Interest in collegiate-level engineering or technology entrepreneurship has been increasing at a rapid rate over the past 10 years. Examples of this interest are easily found:

• The Entrepreneurship (ENT) Division within ASEE in 2000 and ENT Division membership now has over 550 members, indicating a strong interest from individual faculty members and their institutions. • A supportive national organization for these entrepreneurial efforts (the National Collegiate Inventors and Innovators Alliance - NCIIA1) was formed in 1995 under financial support of the Lemelson Foundation2, with the number of NCIIA member institutions now standing at 339. The NCIIA provides encouragement of technology entrepreneurship education through training and developmental grants to support technology entrepreneurship courses, programs and E-teams. • ASME is establishing the Center for Engineering Entrepreneurship and Innovation (CEEI) which will initially provide collegiate-level entrepreneurship support. This effort


Vickers, K., & Kisenwether, E. (2007, June), Graduate Certificates In Entrepreneurism ? A Survey Of Existing Programs As A Guide To Creating New Graduate Certificate Programs Paper presented at 2007 Annual Conference & Exposition, Honolulu, Hawaii. 10.18260/1-2--1851

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2007 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015