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Lehigh's Entrepreneurial Network (Len) Of Alumni: Resources For Student Entrepreneurs

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2004 Annual Conference


Salt Lake City, Utah

Publication Date

June 20, 2004

Start Date

June 20, 2004

End Date

June 23, 2004



Conference Session

Support and Partnership Opportunities

Page Count


Page Numbers

9.857.1 - 9.857.15

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Paper Authors

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John Ochs

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

June 2004 ASEE Conference Entrepreneurship Division #54

Lehigh’s Entrepreneurial Network (LEN) of Alumni: Resources for Student Entrepreneurs

John B Ochs, Professor and Director of the IPD Program, Lehigh University Todd A Watkins, Associate Professor, Department of Economics, Lehigh University

Abstract Entrepreneurship education at Lehigh University has been recently enhanced by substantial institutional investments in new academic programs, the development of a campus center for student entrepreneurs and several grants from federal, state and private organizations. One such grant is from the Kauffman Foundation to build a Lehigh Entrepreneurial Network (LEN) of alumni to assist and advise student entrepreneurs. The effort requires the partnership of several academic programs, such as Lehigh’s Integrated Product Development, Integrated Business and Engineering and Design Arts along with several internal organizations including Lehigh’s Alumni Association, the Development office and the University’s new thrust in innovation, commercialization and entrepreneurship led by the Vice Provost for Research and the Dean of the College of Business and Economics. The LEN is a critical resource to: 1) help guide successful student e-teams through the product design, development, production ramp-up and market introduction phases of new product development, 2) help the students acquire seed funding, and 3) when appropriate be part of the management team in the startup phase of their businesses. The paper will describe a work in progress including the design and implementation of the Lehigh Entrepreneurial Network, its vision, goals, program components and evaluation mechanisms as part of the development entrepreneurial environment at Lehigh University.

Introduction The 1,600 acre campus of Lehigh University is located in Bethlehem, PA, 75 miles west of New York City and 50 miles north of Philadelphia. The university is private, co- educational, non-denomination and serves 4,650 undergraduates and 1,980 graduate students, approximately 60% percent male and 40% female. Students are enrolled in three undergraduate colleges: arts and science (45%), business and economics (25%), engineering and applied science (30%), plus a graduate college of education. Lehigh is considered to be in the class of “highly selective” schools with a with inter-quartile SAT scores from 1210 to 1370. More than 50% of the student body receives scholarships. The student body is from over 20 states and 65 countries, the majority from Pennsylvania, Delaware, New Jersey and New York. There are approximately 420 full- time faculty members with an 11:1 undergraduate student to faculty ratio. The University is a Carnegie class R2 research school with annual research funding of $35-37M with 24 research centers or research institutes. Lehigh has an active and engaged alumni serving in various capacities, such as industry liaisons, department and program advisors and members of the University Board of Trustees.

Lehigh University offers regular entrepreneurship courses and has both full-time regular faculty and adjunct faculty (Lehigh calls them Professors of Practice) dedicated to teaching entrepreneurship. According to a Cornell University study by Debra Streeter Proceedings of the 2004 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright  2004, American Society for Engineering Education 1

Ochs, J. (2004, June), Lehigh's Entrepreneurial Network (Len) Of Alumni: Resources For Student Entrepreneurs Paper presented at 2004 Annual Conference, Salt Lake City, Utah.

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