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Mississippi State University Engineering Entrepreneurship Program

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2003 Annual Conference


Nashville, Tennessee

Publication Date

June 22, 2003

Start Date

June 22, 2003

End Date

June 25, 2003



Conference Session

Product and Venture Creation Curriculum

Page Count


Page Numbers

8.857.1 - 8.857.7



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Paper Authors

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Robert Taylor

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

Session 1654

Mississippi State University Engineering Entrepreneurship Program

Gerald Nelson and Robert P. Taylor

Mississippi State University The James Worth Bagley College of Engineering


A successful engineering entrepreneurship program has been established in the James Worth Bagley College of Engineering at Mississippi State University. The program has three phases: a seminar series, a project experience with strong ties to entrepreneurial business, and a formal course of study leading to a certificate. Student interest has been excellent, with attendance at the seminars being as high as 160. Approximately 30 students are pursuing the certificate in the second year. The program has been endowed by an alumnus who established the Jack Hatcher Chair in Engineering Entrepreneurship. An advisory board of successful entrepreneurs is providing leadership for the program.


The role of the engineering entrepreneur in the expansion of the economy is self-evident. Engineers with entrepreneurial sprit and skills are the locomotives of the technology-based startup company and, perhaps more importantly, of the evolution of established industry. Developing entrepreneurial thinking in our graduates is one of the primary learning goals of the Bagley College. Through an endowment by alumnus Jack Hatcher and the support of the Robert M. Hearin Foundation of Jackson, Mississippi, we have established a multilevel engineering entrepreneurship program to serve students with different degrees of interest. The base mission of the program is to expose our students to the broader elements of running a business and the general managerial skills required to prepare them for opportunities in management. For a more limited number, our mission is to equip technologically creative students to recognize opportunities and help instill the confidence to start entrepreneurial businesses. The vision of the Jack Hatcher Entrepreneurship Program is given in Figure 1.

The basic and broadest element of the entrepreneurship program is a weekly seminar series in which successful entrepreneurs present case histories. Also business leaders discuss specific items, such as patents, hiring employees, and venture capital. The next level is the Idea Fair and Proceedings of the 2003 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright 2003, American Society for Engineering Education

Taylor, R. (2003, June), Mississippi State University Engineering Entrepreneurship Program Paper presented at 2003 Annual Conference, Nashville, Tennessee. 10.18260/1-2--12598

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