Encouraging Entrepreneurship through Education & Collaboration: The Grinspoon Model
In Western Massachusetts, thirteen colleges, including three community colleges, collaborate on entrepreneurship education, thanks largely to the philanthropy of local businessman Harold Grinspoon. His charitable foundation’s Entrepreneurship Initiative has granted funds to over 200 student businesses, sponsored annual banquets featuring live elevator pitch competitions and held annual conferences for up to 500 students.
The session will focus on the history and stunning success of the HGCFEI. Participants would include Brenda Wishart, Director and Gail Olmsted, representing the faculty perspective. It is anticipated that an additional one or more faculty representing other participating colleges will also present. The model will be presented, the participating institutions identified, and the impact of the funding, collaboration, education, celebration and training opportunities will be shared. It is anticipated that video clips from the annual banquet and elevator pitch competition will be presented, along with Spirit Award winner testimonials. The session will conclude with suggestions for the replication of the Grinspoon model in other regions.
Gail Olmsted, Assistant Professor, Springfield Technical Community College, MA
Brenda Wishart, Director, Harold Grinspoon Charitable Foundation Entrepreneurship Initiative, MA