Innovation, Entrepreneurship Programs Awarded for Excellence in Teaching


Innovation, Entrepreneurship Programs Awarded for Excellence in Teaching

UT Dallas student budding entrepreneurs and the faculty behind them are part of the university’s program recently honored for its innovative teaching. From left to right: Madison Pedigo, director of the Innovation and Entrepreneurship Programs; Matthew Hinson, innovation and entrepreneurship student; Dan Bochsler, manager of the Startup Launch Track; Dr. Joseph Picken, Institute for Innovation and Entrepreneurship (IIE) founder; Nicole Mossman, innovation and entrepreneurship student; Alejandro Jacobo, innovation and entrepreneurship student; and Jackie Kimzey, executive director of the IIE

Development of a “significant original innovation” for teaching budding entrepreneurs how to develop new ventures has earned UT Dallas a top peer-reviewed award from a worldwide consortium of university-based entrepreneurship centers.

The Global Consortium of Entrepreneurship Centers named The University of Texas at Dallas winner of its 2014 Award for Excellence in Entrepreneurship Teaching and Pedagogical Innovation at its annual meeting, held October 3 in London. The award nomination emphasized venture acceleration and the Startup Launch Track, a unique curriculum within the Naveen Jindal School of Management’s MS in Innovation and Entrepreneurship Program. Established last year, the track affords select students $25,000 in seed capital, laboratory and/or office space, and specialized help to launch new enterprises as they earn their degrees.

The innovation award is the second JSOM has earned from the consortium. Comprised of more than 200 university centers of entrepreneurship throughout the world, the consortium is a leadership organization that addresses emerging entrepreneurship topics. In 2009, GCEC recognized the Jindal School for Outstanding Contributions to Advance the Discipline of Entrepreneurship.

Earlier this year, the Jindal School’s MS in Innovation and Entrepreneurship Program earned recognition from the United States Association for Small Business and Entrepreneurship as the 2014 National Model Graduate (MBA) Entrepreneurship Program.

A key person behind all these awards was Dr. Joseph C. Picken, who founded the UT Dallas Institute for Innovation and Entrepreneurship and developed UT Dallas’ academic programs in innovation and entrepreneurship. “We are pleased to be recognized for this GCEC award,” Picken said. “It is a credit to the entire faculty and a further reflection of the state-of-the art curriculum we have developed at UT Dallas.”

“The quality and high standards of our faculty also played a key role in winning this award,” said Madison Pedigo, Picken’s successor as director of JSOM’s innovation and entrepreneurship programs. Pedigo in particular praised Dan Bochsler, the manager of the Startup Launch Track.

“Being in a startup company is both a wonderful challenge, and one of the most difficult challenges for anyone.…A defining feature of the UT Dallas academic program in innovation is the breadth and depth of topics and courses delivered from a very experienced academic and industry faculty, “Bochsler said.

Bochsler, Pedigo and Picken praised JSOM Dean and Caruth Chair of Management Hasan Pirkul as the creative force behind the latest innovation. “Startup Launch was the dean’s idea, and he was a prime mover in making it a reality,” Picken said. “We have some budding business owners who owe him a big thank you.”