World Entrepreneurship Day celebrates innovation

April 8, 2010

If you had a million dollars right now, how would you use it to change the world? This is the question the Crown Scholarship program is asking ASU students, and ASU students will be among those with the opportunity to decide who answered best.

On April 16, World Entrepreneurship Day (W.E.D.), ASU and the Entrepreneurs@ASU student organization will join together to host a day of events that empower and engage ASU students, including: Download Full Image

• Edson Venture Creator Pitches: 9 a.m.-12 p.m., Memorial Union, room 220.

• Entrepreneurship and Innovation Workshop Sessions: 1-3 p.m., Memorial Union, second floor.

Entrepreneurs@ASU World Entrepreneurship Celebration: 7-9 p.m., Tempe Center for the Arts.

Visit the" target="_blank">W.E.D. for full event and registration details. And, yes, there is even an opportunity for students to vote for who they think should be awarded entrepreneurship scholarship funds.

After a morning of Edson Venture Creator Pitches and an afternoon of Entrepreneurship and Innovation Workshops, the day’s energy will culminate with a main event: the Entrepreneurs@ASU World Entrepreneurship Day (W.E.D.) Celebration, to take place from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. at Tempe Center for the Arts.

Students attending will have a chance to weigh in on who they think should be awarded a $2,000 Crown Scholarship.

“We’re trying something fresh and giving students the opportunity to vote,” said Tyler Metcalf, co-president of the Entrepreneurs@ASU student organization.

This year, the Entrepreneurs@ASU student organization is promoting and coordinating the Crown Scholars program, an opportunity for five students to be awarded $2,000 for the 2010-2011 academic year. At the W.E.D. Celebration, scholarship finalists will present pitches regarding how they would change the world if they had $1 million dollars. One of the five winners will be announced in front of the live crowd, selected in part by student voters. Instructions for how to apply can be found" target="_blank">here.

And that’s not all…

“We’re really excited about the W.E.D. celebration because it’s amazing that such diverse entrepreneurship talent will be in one room!” said Lauren Amarante, co-president of the Entrepreneurs@ASU student organization.

The evening event will feature accomplished entrepreneurs such as Matt Pittinsky, founder of Blackboard; Doug Ducey,  former chief executive officer of Coldstone Creamery; and Chris Boshuizen, former director of the Space Generation and Advisory Council at NASA Ames. These guests, among other entrepreneurship experts, will deliver speeches and present via panels about their thoughts on how younger generations’ entrepreneurial pursuits will shape the future of America.

For students seeking a more intimate discussion with experts in entrepreneurship and innovation, the afternoon Entrepreneurship and Innovation Workshop series is a great fit. The series, offered concurrently from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m., feature Scott Ballum (, Brandon Willey (Redpear), and Jess Rimmington (One World Youth Project), among other professionals.

“We’ve developed the sessions to allow students to connect and interact with individuals who have a great deal of experience in entrepreneurship and innovation,” said Maggie McGannon, University Innovation Fellow in the ASU Office of University Initiatives. These same experts will be judging morning elevator pitches for the Challenges Innovator, Community Changemaker, and Edson Venture Creator competitions, three tracks of the ASU Innovation Challenge (

Edson Venture Creator Pitches are open to the general public. Students will deliver three-minute pitches to demonstrate why their Edson venture ideas should be selected to advance to the final judging round.

“We want students to see what neat ideas their peers are acting on,” said Scott Perkofski, program manager of the Edson Student Entrepreneur Initiative. “We hope the energy and the presentation of innovative ideas inspires students to submit applications for the Edson competition next year.”

The final track of the ASU Innovation Challenge, the Innovation Explorer track, is still accepting submissions. Students must attend six events over the course of the semester, Tweet or Facebook post about them, and enter to win up to $500.

“Students can attend all three events on the 16th and if they Facebook or Tweet about them, they’re already halfway there,” Perkofski said. Other entrepreneurship and innovation events can be found" target="_blank">online. For information about World Entrepreneurship Day, visit" target="_blank">

Britt Lewis

Communications Specialist, ASU Library

ASU awarded $1M national pathways grant

April 8, 2010

Arizona State University has been awarded a $1 million national grant to increase the number of transfer students to ASU from in-state community colleges.

The grant comes from The Kresge Foundation, which will fund a project called “Creating Seamless Transfer Pathways Among Arizona Postsecondary Education Institutions.” The project has been funded for $1 million over a three-year period and continues through March 2013. Download Full Image

“One of our primary goals is to assist students in attaining an associate degree and then transferring successfully to obtaining a bachelor’s degree,” said Elizabeth Capaldi, ASU provost and executive vice president. “Arizona faces the challenge of building the educated work force we need to strengthen the economy, and through this grant we are able to provide community colleges important tools that have helped students succeed at ASU.”

The goal is to increase the number of students transferring to ASU from Arizona community colleges, making the transfer process more individualized and understandable, by improving technology and communication tools. The new tools will allow students to easily upload their community college coursework and track progress to various degree programs at the university, as well as expand access to ASU’s signature eAdvisor tool to community college students.

“The Kresge Foundation is pleased to support ASU’s innovative efforts to strengthen its community college transfer pipeline," said Caroline Altman Smith, program officer at the Kresge Foundation. "This new and improved technology will empower community college students statewide with the information and resources they need to chart their educational paths toward a baccalaureate degree. We commend ASU and its community college partners for their efforts to help students achieve their educational goals.”

About The Kresge Foundation
The Kresge Foundation is a $2.9 billion private, national foundation headquartered in metropolitan Detroit, Michigan.  The Foundation seeks to influence the quality of life for future generations through its support of nonprofit organizations in six fields: health, the environment, arts and culture, education, human services and community development. Fostering greater access to and success in post-secondary education for low-income, minority and first-generation college students is the focus of Kresge’s Education grantmaking. In 2009, Kresge awarded more than $26 million in grants to support higher education in the United States and South Africa. To learn more, visit />
Maria Hesse,
Vice Provost for Transfer Partnerships
Arizona State University
(602) 496-1180

Reporter , ASU News