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W. P. Carey School adds more entrepreneurship resources for community

portrait of Sidnee Peck, director of Center for Entrepreneurship
April 28, 2014

Whether you already run a company or want to start your own business, the W. P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University is adding some new resources to help you. The school has been teaching entrepreneurship for almost 30 years, and is now “supersizing” its offerings in this area.

“Arizona State University has reached an incredible tipping point, where we’re seeing so much interest in entrepreneurship, so many programs launched and so many resources available to help the community,” says Amy Hillman, dean of the W. P. Carey School of Business. “These new additions specifically at the W. P. Carey School will help provide outreach to connect our students, alumni, business partners and others – bringing everyone together to boost entrepreneurship.”

The W. P. Carey School’s longtime Spirit of Enterprise Center is being renamed the Center for Entrepreneurship to encompass all of the new initiatives. Sidnee Peck, a popular entrepreneurship instructor recently chosen to speak at a White House event about the importance of teaching young entrepreneurs, is the center’s new director. Peck is also a weekly newspaper columnist on how to start a business.

The W. P. Carey School has already produced student entrepreneurs recognized by the White House, Forbes magazine and Entrepreneur magazine, among others. The school offers an undergraduate major in business entrepreneurship and an MBA with an emphasis in entrepreneurship.

“The W. P. Carey School will continue to offer its incredibly popular Spirit of Enterprise Awards competition to recognize Arizona firms for ethics, energy and excellence,” says Peck. “However, we’re also adding another program to recognize successful entrepreneurship in any location or industry. The Sun Devil Select competition will celebrate ASU alum-owned or alum-led businesses that demonstrate innovation, growth and entrepreneurial spirit. The winners will be invited back to the ASU campus to connect with each other, visit classes and meet with the W. P. Carey School’s dean and students.”

The center is also launching a student competition called the Sun Devil Igniter Challenge, which will be based on disruptive innovation. The winning team will receive $50,000 and an esteemed board of advisers with more than 60 years of combined experience.

The school will also co-host a Phoenix-area class with the Think Global Institute his fall. The institute is a business accelerator program that provides support, consultation and resources for women entrepreneurs who have launched firms and made them profitable, but who are now ready to grow those businesses.

Overall, the center will continue to offer help and guidance to hundreds of businesses each year. Its existing efforts include the Student Teams for Entrepreneurship Projects (STEP) program, which matches teams of W. P. Carey School students with Valley companies to help tackle real-world challenges and opportunities. Companies can also use the center to access other ASU business resources. The center is self-funded and utilizes community sponsorships and volunteers to sustain its activities.

For more information about the center or to nominate a business for the Spirit of Enterprise Awards or Sun Devil Select, visit