Salt Lake City, Utah
June 20, 2004
June 20, 2004
June 23, 2004
9.1215.1 - 9.1215.9
Creating an Entrepreneurial University
Inspiring entrepreneurship within a student body doesn’t require monumental, elaborate changes in a program or institution. Converting a traditional education to an entrepreneurial education doesn’t require complicated, sweeping changes in the faculty and the classroom. A significant transformation can come from something as modest and low key as the collaboration of two faculty members, with the resulting creation of a partnership that allows its members to draw on the others’ diverse backgrounds and distinct strengths to change the direction of a program and to excite an entire student body. That’s exactly what is happening in the College of Technology and Aviation at Kansas State University! From the collaboration of just two faculty members, a cross- discipline entrepreneurship initiative has commenced, resulting in much excitement among the student body, the faculty, and the surrounding community.
The Salina campus of Kansas State University is home to the College of Technology and Aviation, which is the newest and fastest growing of all the colleges at Kansas State University. One thousand undergraduate students (72 percent male; 28 percent female) are enrolled at the Salina Campus, with 89% of students coming from Kansas. Ninety percent of the student body is under the age of 24, with 70% attending on a full-time basis.
The College of Technology and Aviation offers two- and four-year programs in the fields of engineering technology, aviation (including professional pilot), and business. The academic programs are designed to directly prepare participants for the world of work, and the programs are very application oriented and laboratory intensive. KSU-Salina students learn by doing. Over the last five years, the college has placed 96% of its graduates, and each year several employers actively recruit on campus.
With the size of the campus, the diversity of study, and the large number of active entrepreneurs in the local community, this campus provides the ideal environment for implementation of a broad-based entrepreneurial transformation. With very little fanfare, this transformation has already begun and will continue to be implemented, until entrepreneurship permeates every facet of the college’s activities and its students’ experiences. This entrepreneurial spirit will guide the college in its future endeavors and will lead to a more recognized campus producing increasingly innovative and business- savvy graduates.
This initiative started with the collaborations of Greg Spaulding, associate professor in the Department of Engineering Technology and Kathy Vratil Brockway, assistant professor in the Department of Arts, Sciences, and Business. Through personal experiences, each had recognized the need for entrepreneurial education at the college and had realized the benefits students would reap from receiving such an education. Informally they began working together to cultivate entrepreneurship among just a few of their students. It grew into something much bigger, and each has been surprised at how powerful such a simple and somewhat unplanned partnership can be.
Brockway, K., & Spaulding, G. (2004, June), Technology And Business: The Complete Entrepreneurial Experience Paper presented at 2004 Annual Conference, Salt Lake City, Utah. https://peer.asee.org/13609
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