17 Jul UW-Madison Receives Grant to Develop Entrepreneurship Proposal
UW-Madison has received a $50,000 planning grant from the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, Kansas City, Mo., to develop a comprehensive plan for cross-campus entrepreneurship in a national competition among 30 universities. UW-Madison, along with 14 other U.S. universities, was selected by the Foundation to compete for further awards of up to $5 million in the Collegiate Entrepreneurial Initiative.
Provost Peter Spear and School of Business Dean Michael Knetter initiated the planning project. The proposal was developed by a team comprised of Professor Anne Miner, executive director of INSITE (Initiative for Studies in Technology Entrepreneurship), Professor Ramon Aldag, executive director, and Larry Cox, director of the business school’s Weinert Center for Entrepreneurship.
“Parts of the initiative encourage what the university wants to accomplish, such as expanding the vision of social entrepreneurship,” said Miner. “We want to give students more opportunities to be exposed to entrepreneurial values.”
The proposal will focus on encouraging resourcefulness and creativity in terms of developing a social entrepreneurship program. It will also focus on taking UW-Madison’s pre-existing programs in technological entrepreneurship to a new level, encompassing both research and teaching activities.
The goal of the Kauffman grant program is to transform campus life so that entrepreneurship will become a vital part of the college experience. The initiative is based on the belief that entrepreneurship is necessary for the American economy and that colleges offer an opportunity for teach future entrepreneurs who will invent, create jobs, and fuel economic growth.
The $5 million grants will be awarded to schools based on their creativity and commitment to making entrepreneurship training and experiences available across college departments and to students of diverse disciplines. Universities must also be able to raise matching funds.
“College campuses are idea incubators where people learn skills and forge work habits and relationships that serve them all their lives,” said Rob Chernow, the Kauffman Foundation’s senior vice president of entrepreneurship. “We know there’s an entrepreneurial spirit sweeping across college campuses today, and we’re thrilled to build on this momentum so that entrepreneurship becomes a natural and vital aspect of the American educational experience.”
Helping to plan and write the proposal also include UW-Madison deans Elton Aberle of the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences, Gilles Bousquet of International Studies, Phillip Certain from the College of Letters and Science, Robin Douthitt from the School of Human Ecology, Kenneth Davis from the Law School, Michael Knetter of the School of Business, Paul Peercy from the College of Engineering, and Charles Read School of Education. Faculty and staff in each school are also involved.
The other recipients of the grant include Florida International University, Howard University, Purdue University, Syracuse University, University of California-San Diego, University of Illinois, University of Maryland-Baltimore County, University of Memphis, University of New Mexico, University of North Carolina, University of Rochester, University of Texas-El Paso, Wake Forest University, and Washington University.
Jamie Hofmeister is a freelance technology writer and regular contributor to the Wisconsin Technology Network. She can be reached at Jamie Hofmeister.