News & Events

UI Entrepreneurship Program Recognized As National Model

The undergraduate entrepreneurship program at the University of Iowa has been recognized as a National Model Undergraduate Entrepreneurship program by the United States Association for Small Business and Entrepreneurship (USASBE). The prestigious award was announced at the 18th Annual USASBE National Conference held in Dallas, Texas, Jan. 15-18.

"It is a great honor for our program to be recognized as a model undergraduate program by USASBE. We have created a unique campus-wide, interdisciplinary certificate program that provides innovative entrepreneurial educational opportunities for students from business, engineering, and liberal arts and sciences," said David Hensley (left), director of the John Pappajohn Entrepreneurial Center (JPEC).

The UI's undergraduate entrepreneurship program has recorded rapid growth since the inception of the Pappajohn Center in 1996. Undergraduate student enrollments have risen from 344 in 1996-97 to more than 1,800 this year. Students may earn a certificate in entrepreneurship in addition to their undergraduate degrees. The entrepreneurship curriculum includes 15 courses covering topics that include the entrepreneur and entrepreneurial process, business planning, venture finance, marketing, leading a growth business, technology development, innovation and creativity, and consulting.

This past academic year, JPEC, the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, and the Tippie College of Business announced the Performing Arts Entrepreneurship undergraduate degree. This new major is designed for students who intend to start and/or operate their own businesses in the performing arts, as well as those interested in gaining a better understanding of the entrepreneurial process as it relates to this specialized field.

"This recognition would not have been possible without the generous support of John and Mary Pappajohn and other private donors and organizations interested in providing entrepreneurship educational opportunities to UI students. JPEC has benefited greatly from outstanding leadership and support from former directors, the deans of the Colleges of Business, Engineering, Liberal Arts and Sciences, and Medicine, and the president's office. We have also been very fortunate to have a cadre of experienced entrepreneurs and business leaders willing to share their expertise and time with our students," stated Hensley.

JPEC sponsors a variety of activities throughout the academic year aimed at exposing interested students in many aspects of entrepreneurship and nurturing their entrepreneurial spirit. The majority of these events are open to all University of Iowa students, regardless of their academic major. Options include the entrepreneurial club, business plan competitions, guest speakers, a mentor program, a field study/business consulting program, seminars that are presented both on campus and throughout the state, programs for incoming students in the residence halls, and social activities.


Return to top of page