Best Entrepreneur Schools
Searching for entrepreneur schools and a quality entrepreneur education can be tough. Business students must often sort through an array of options. Most universities have an entrepreneurship program on campus, but that’s where the similarities end. Entrepreneur colleges range from large to small, traditional to modern, and Ivy League to smaller schools. We’ve selected the top 10 business schools that offer entrepreneur education. These schools rank highly, collect awards and get acclaim for their great programs and start-up success rates.
Babson College, the Entrepreneur’s College
Babson College in Wellesley, MA offers many features that other entrepreneur schools on this list don’t. The first is its history as one of the first entrepreneur colleges in the world. In 1919, Babson College was mainly for seasoned people in business. Babson prided itself on unique curriculum and focused on teaching four core courses. These were practical economics, financial management, business psychology and personal efficiency. The intensive was for one year, but this has expanded to three.
Today Babson College is still the benchmark for entrepreneur education. Among their courses are the Foundations of Management and Entrepreneurship, where first years start, run and dissolve a business. The college also constructs two-week intensives for students to explore entrepreneurship in many fields.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Entrepreneurship through Management
MIT’s Sloan School of Management has evolved since its founding in 1914. Sloan was initially an engineering administration school, but eventually embraced the idea of educating “the ideal manager.” The school focuses on degrees in management, finance and business analytics combined with innovation. It offers undergrad programs and one of the most competitive MBA tracks in the world. Students at this school have access to action learning labs that pair students with real companies to solve issues. These labs are the Entrepreneurship Lab, Innovation Teams, and Leading Sustainable Systems lab.
The school also boasts the Martin Trust Center for MIT Entrepreneurship. This center focuses on relevant courses, mentorships, and student activities. The school also puts on an annual Entrepreneurship Competition for a prize of $100,000, which is one of the highest accolades awarded by similar contests. It is one of the most significant business plan comps in the world and has launched more than 130 companies.
The University of Southern California, the Entrepreneur School for the Digital Age
USC Marshall School of Business is at the front of digital entrepreneurship. Students gain a rewarding entrepreneur education at the Lloyd Greif Center for Entrepreneurship Studies. The Lloyd Greif Center puts forth several focuses that stand apart from other entrepreneur schools, and it also uses the influence of Silicon Valley and California’s business opportunities.
Marshall offers tracks like Game Entrepreneurship, Innovation: The Digital Entrepreneur, Technology Commercialization, Media Economics & Entrepreneurship and more. Its coursework makes it the school of choice for entrepreneurs breaking into the digital sphere. Among famous alumni are the co-founders of Riot Games.
The University of Texas at Austin, the Entrepreneur School for Startups
The University of Texas at Austin offers a lot of resources and inspiration for young entrepreneurs. The McCombs School of Business is only the tip of the entrepreneur education journey available! While pursuing their degree, entrepreneurship students have access to the entrepreneur hubs Herb Kelleher Center and the Selig Center. The college also offers several incubators, series, and courses aimed at developing technologies.
The Longhorn Startup is a valuable opportunity for students offered by the school. Beginning in the Fall semester with a lecture series, real entrepreneurs speak to students about their experiences and answer questions. Students also pitch their ideas to fellow students and participate in networking and “speed-dating” events to meet mentors and co-founders. The Spring semester brings the Longhorn Startup Lab, and students with scalable technology company startup ideas are selected after an intense application process. Then, The Lab then gives them credit for working on the startup in school. This Startup program goes above and beyond the smaller-scale programs put on by other entrepreneur schools. Therefore, UT Austin easily stands apart from other schools.
Baylor University, an Immersive Entrepreneurship Education
Baylor University offers a hands-on entrepreneur education at its Hankamer School of Business. When pursuing a major in Entrepreneurship and Corporate Innovation, students receive access to competitions, a student-managed stock option, and single undergraduate housing.
Entrepreneurial-minded undergrads live in Brooks Flats. Brooks Flats is student housing explicitly designed to mentor entrepreneurship in residents. The Business and Innovation Living-Learning Center hosts several activities to support this mindset in students. Activities include Wednesday mornings’ One Million Cups, and local entrepreneurs become a regular part of the program. These entrepreneurs mingle with and mentor students. The living community hosts a trip to Austin to network with business owners and recruiters. The college also puts on a business etiquette dinner and several social and mentorship programs. The live-in and learn setting is unique to this school and does not have a comparable plan among others.
Harvard University, the Entrepreneur Education Authority
Harvard Business School’s’ strength lies in its MBA and Executive teaching programs. However, undergraduate concentrations at Harvard College. Undergrads choose levels in Economics, Energy Environment, Policy and more, and these influence their future entrepreneurship field. MBA students have access to the Rock Center for Entrepreneurship and participate in several programs to develop startups. The Rock Accelerator is an incubator for startups during the school year. The center also offers new venture competitions and the Rock Summer Fellowship for tech and start-up companies to develop over summer months.
Professors at Harvard teach by the case method, and these real-world business cases and lawsuits are presented for dissection and analysis by students. These materials are useful and accessible. Therefore they are used in business and entrepreneurship courses at many other schools. As of last year, Harvard currently holds the title for most successful startups founded by alumni from an entrepreneur college with 24 recorded.
The University of Michigan at Ann Arbor, the Venture Capital College
Students flock to the University of Michigan for a world-class education. This school provides a wealth of opportunity to its students and many programs for students with startup ideas are available. These include student-led venture funds, a business plan competition and an annual conference with keynote speakers and breakout workshops.
The Wolverine Venture Fund is the world’s first student-run Venture Capital Fund. Today a team of MBA students runs the fund and have since its founding in 1997. The fund has invested in over 27 companies, and it’s assets increased by over $5 million in 11 years. This is one of three of the student-led venture funds that offer different levels of involvement. Another is the Early Stage Fund, which is led by a team of BBA undergraduate students and geared toward investment ideas in their early stages of development. Because of their success, the venture capital funds are some of the most resourceful found at a school.
University of California at Berkeley, the Entrepreneur Launchpad
UC Berkeley offers world-class professors, innovative courses and the seamless combination of technology and entrepreneurship within the Haas School of Business. The school is famous for its LAUNCH program, which was initially the project of two MBA students in 1999. The Launch program has an executive committee comprised of first-year MBA students that select 20-25 startup applicants. Then, the applicants match with real entrepreneurs who act as mentors for the accelerator. During the quick growth of UC startups, mentors help companies build teams, protect IP, network, pitch and become funded. The throttle ends with pitching live to 300+ members of the Haas School of Business. Launchpads and accelerators are common in entrepreneur schools, but none attract the prestige and personality that LAUNCH has.
The University of Pennsylvania, the Innovators College
Alongside Harvard, U-Penn holds the distinction of being an Ivy League school with a rich history. Because the school was founded in 1740 by Benjamin Franklin, most programs at U-Penn have a prestigious distinction. This also includes the Penn Wharton School. Politicians, business owners, diplomats, and also international influencers frequent Wharton School and contribute to its rich ecosystem perfect for startups and innovation. A unique feature of Wharton School unmatched by other entrepreneur schools is that they are one of the only campuses to offer a Coursera 4-course section on entrepreneurship. The course is open to all applicants online. Wharton professors teach the class with the same content provided on campus.
The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, a Leader of Entrepreneur Schools
The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill hosts the Kenan-Flagler School of Business, a global leader of entrepreneur schools. Founded in 1997, the Center for Entrepreneurial Studies operates off the 3-L model: Learn, Launch, Lead. During their time at Chapel Hill, so as students have the opportunity to participate in groundbreaking coursework, incubators, accelerators, labs and mentorships, and globally acclaimed competitions for grants, funds, and distinction as startups.
Choosing the Right Entrepreneur College for You
The top ten entrepreneur colleges above all have qualities for their students that set them apart from the rest. Deciding on the right college can seem daunting, but each offers a fit for prospective students. Want to develop games and high-tech projects? Head to the University of Southern California. Baylor University is an excellent option for students who crave total immersion. The key to selecting your future college is to get clear on your values, learning style, and your prospective field. With these ten colleges, you can’t possibly make a wrong choice.
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