June 14, 2015
June 14, 2015
June 17, 2015
Entrepreneurship & Engineering Innovation
26.1275.1 - 26.1275.10
Promoting Entrepreneurial Skills through Senior Design Projects at the University of XXXXXAbstract: Two faculty from the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department at theUniversity of XXXX received a grant from VentureWell to develop a course in innovation andentrepreneurship. They offered the course in the spring 2013 and spring 2014 semesters. Thiscourse consisted of a mixture of graduate and undergraduate students from several disciplinesworking on multiple projects; each project was unique, formed out of student or faculty ideas.The faculty teaching this course developed a strategy to nourish the innovation andentrepreneurships in young engineer by allowing all engineering majors to register and byforming multidisciplinary teams that worked on the innovation of the idea, developed anexecutive summary of the project and looked into the financial support of the invention. Eachteam had to analyze the opportunity at hand, provided a thorough market analysis, and write aten page report about the project (from inception to commercialization). Students on each teamwere encouraged to continue to work together in the Senior Design I and Senior Design IIcourses with the intent of them being able to commercialize the design.Part of the faculty research was to build and promote a culture of innovation among engineeringstudents; therefore as a follow up from the course offering in the spring 2013 the facultysupported two projects during their capstone senior design courses for the fall 2013-spring 2014semesters with a strong plan for commercialization of the product. These students weremotivated, self-driven and excited about their projects and the possibility of launching a businesssuccessfully by using our program, and taking advantage of the resources available to them fromour University’s Office of Technology Transfer. This support allowed these two teams to designand prototype the product during the fall 2013 and spring 2014 semesters. These two teamsreceived multiple cash awards while competing in the State of XXXX Social entrepreneurshipconference and the Ventureprise business competition. One team built a company; it is stillactive even after the participants graduated with their Baccalaureate degrees. Thus far the facultyhave supported four entrepreneurial teams in the capstone senior design courses.While the entrepreneurship course gives a chance for our students to work with a faculty on thedevelopment of a new product, linking it to the capstone senior design course strengthens thefoundation for our engineering students to embark on new opportunity when feasible. Thiscombination helped our students identify opportunities to implement all ideas, helped individualstudent learn about managing business growth, and provided methods of using critical thinking.The Technology Innovation and Entrepreneurship course linked with our senior design capstonecourses empowers our graduates to confront challenging business cases and to seek solutionfrom a business perspective. Our goal is to encourage our engineering students to work withbusiness students from the inception of an entrepreneurship project until commercialization.This paper describes in detail the successes of these four entrepreneurial Senior Design teams.
Bousaba, N. A., & Conrad, J. M. (2015, June), Promoting Entrepreneurial Skills Through Senior Design Projects Paper presented at 2015 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Seattle, Washington. 10.18260/p.24612
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