Posted By Administration,
Thursday, September 18, 2008
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Maximizing Entrepreneurial Collaborations: How a Regional Conference Created Effective Partnerships
This session offers a practical model for organizing and implementing a regional conference on Best Practices for Teaching Entrepreneurship and Innovation. By sharing an approach to conference planning that incorporates dynamic hands-on skills-building sessions and showcases local entrepreneurial spirit, Colorado Mountain College demonstrates how a stimulating venue for conference participants fosters K-16 partnerships and interdisciplinary collaborations to enhance the delivery of entrepreneurship education. This project was partially funded by a Coleman elevator grant.
The purpose of this session is to provide a model for community colleges that may want to plan and host a successful regional conference for best practices for teaching entrepreneurship and innovation. The model is based on a conference that Colorado Mountain College (CMC) initiated, developed, coordinated, and hosted at its Timberline Campus in Leadville, Colorado from June 5 to 7, 2008. CMC is a comprehensive community college with a service area of 12,000 square miles in the north central Rocky Mountains.
The conference brought together entrepreneurship educators from postsecondary and secondary schools, students, practicing entrepreneurs, and governmental and not-for-profit support organizations to discuss and develop best practices for delivering entrepreneurship education and training and recruiting and retaining students. In addition, the conference participants created state-wide partnerships and interdisciplinary collaborations to enhance learning experiences of entrepreneurship students at all levels and in all venues.
The session will consist of a PowerPoint presentation and discussion that highlights the conference planning time table, setting and facilities, program schedule and speakers/presenters, promotions and marketing, food and accommodations, transportation, management tools, vendor exhibits, conference materials, equipment and support, and entertainment. In addition, the presentation will include the conference fundraising strategies, budgeting, and evaluation.
The presentation will emphasize lessons learned that will impact the planning and implementation of future conferences. We hope that the session attendees will learn from the changes that we plan to make in the logistics, outreach, and fundraising for next year’s conference.
Our goal is to encourage other community colleges to plan and host regional conferences on entrepreneurship education and training. These colleges can learn from our experience and we are willing to provide advice during their planning process. The session attendees will receive a “how-to” Conference Planning Guide that includes a planning timetable.
Susanna B. Spaulding, Ph.D., Associate Professor and Director-Entrepreneurship Program, Colorado Mountain College, CO
Nicole M. Fazande, MAEd, Division Director II-Dillon Center, Summit Campus
Colorado Mountain College, CO