Asee peer logo

Universities And Industry Create Engineer Entrepreneurs To Fuel Innovation

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

Creating a Technology Incubator and Creating a Seed Fund

Tagged Division

Entrepreneurship & Engineering Innovation

Page Count


Page Numbers

12.1518.1 - 12.1518.9



Permanent URL

Download Count


Request a correction

Paper Authors


Jim Subach Arizona State University

visit author page

Jim Subach received his BS in Engineering Physics from the University of Maine, and his MS and Ph.D. in Optical Sciences from the University of Arizona. He has 30 years of experience in technology, was a Visiting Scientist at NASA-JSC, currently operates his own business and technology consulting practice, and is a Professor of Practice at Arizona State University.

visit author page


Lakshmi Munukutla Arizona State University

visit author page

Lakshmi Munukutla received her Ph.D. degree in Solid State Physics from Ohio University, Athens, Ohio and M.Sc and B.Sc degrees from Andhra University, India. She has been active in research and published several journal articles. She is the Chair of the Electronic Systems Department at Arizona State University at the Polytechnic campus.

visit author page


John Magrane Microchip Technology Inc.

visit author page

John Magrane is the Technical Training Manager, America for Microchip Technology Inc. in which he manages live customer training programs thought the America. He has twenty-five years experience in the electronics field in positions that include hardware and software design, manufacturing and test management and field applications engineering management.

visit author page


Carol Popovich Microchip Technology Inc.

visit author page

Carol Popovich has over 30 years experience in all aspects of business, including Operations Management, Budgeting, Sales, Marketing, and Finance. She currently works for Microchip Technology Inc., coordinating their University Program, with a focus on encouraging schools and universities to teach course work based on Microchip's architecture, thus preparing students to become the engineers of tomorrow.

visit author page

Download Paper |

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

Universities and Industry Create Engineer Entrepreneurs to Fuel Innovation

James Subach and Lakshmi Munukutla Electronic Systems Department Arizona State University at the Polytechnic campus And John Magrane and Carol Popovich Microchip Technology Inc. Chandler, Arizona


Entrepreneurship is a driving force in creating new products and new companies. Both these activities create job opportunities for our students upon graduation. According to Kauffman Foundation research, 41% of children ages 9-12 say they would like to start their own business. Furthermore, about 70% of the net job creation in the nation was attributed to businesses in existence less than five years. Based upon this data, it is evident that universities and industry need to join hands to promote the integration of entrepreneurial skills into classrooms to motivate and provide guidance to the nation’s future innovators. Today’s engineering students must not only be technically educated, but they must also be aware of what it takes to bring their ideas to market. This includes skills in marketing, production, budgeting, innovation and business analysis. It is the collaboration between industry and academia that will teach our students to shape their ideas to fill real-world needs.

Engineering entrepreneurship requires that engineers acquire a number of skills that are not normally present, particularly in new graduates. These include a number of general business skills related to accounting, marketing, finance, and others where engineering graduates typically have minimal skills and, in many cases, little interest. Additionally, the broad area of soft skills can be difficult for engineering students to grasp and they openly question its value. Yet, when presented in a graduate course in business agility for engineers, one of us (JS) has seen students recognize the value of these skills and begin to develop and utilize them within 4 weeks of the start of the course. One student’s comment typified the reaction: “When I started this course I saw no value in soft skills. Now I can see that they can be more valuable than technical skills.” Companies such as Microchip Technology are well positioned to mentor university students. Companies can provide guidance with regard to creating business plans, marketing and promoting their designs, while guiding students to turn their innovative ideas into a successful enterprise. Arizona State University’s (ASU’s) Polytechnic campus is uniquely situated to encourage students to participate in

Subach, J., & Munukutla, L., & Magrane, J., & Popovich, C. (2007, June), Universities And Industry Create Engineer Entrepreneurs To Fuel Innovation Paper presented at 2007 Annual Conference & Exposition, Honolulu, Hawaii. 10.18260/1-2--2634

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