Tag Archives: Entrepreneurship

Harvard Celebrates New Venture Competition’s 20th Anniversary

In April, Harvard Business School students and alumni will compete for $300,000 in cash prizes to fund their startup dreams in the 20th Anniversary New Venture Competition. Past competition winners and participants will also return …

In April, Harvard Business School students and alumni will compete for $300,000 in cash prizes to fund their startup dreams in the 20th Anniversary New Venture Competition. Past competition winners and participants will also return to campus for programs and a celebratory 20th Anniversary New Venture Competition Finale on Tuesday, April 25, 2017.

The school is offering its biggest prizes to date, with a $75,000 Grand Prize for top winners in the Student Business, Student Social Enterprise, and Alumni competitions. Additional prizes are a $25,000 Runner-Up Prize, $5,000 Audience Award, and in-kind services. Previously the Grand Prize was $50,000 in each category.

More than 200 judges will vigorously review the new ventures in several rounds of judging. Past winners include Rent the Runway, Birchbox, and GrabTaxi.

“The New Venture Competition is critical to entrepreneurship at Harvard Business School,” says Jodi Gernon, Director of the Rock Center for Entrepreneurship, which oversees the student and alumni business tracks of the competition. “Competition winners say it was the launching point of their businesses, helped them to attract funding, and gave them the confidence, exposure, and skills to found companies.”

Matt Segneri, Director of the HBS Social Enterprise Initiative, which manages the social enterprise track, says, “The winning teams developed innovative approaches—using for-profit, nonprofit and hybrid models—to tackle society’s toughest challenges, including HIV prevention and K-12 education reform.”

171 alumni teams applied in January and are being judged in 15 regions. Four alumni teams will make it to the semifinals to present and be judged at the April Finale at HBS. More than 70 student teams on the business track and 48 social entrepreneurs have already applied in advance of the March 8 deadline.

HBS also offers workshops and other support for students. You can learn more about the New Venture Competition at hbs.edu/nvc and track Harvard Business School’s 20th Anniversary New Venture Competition on Twitter at #HBSNVC.

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Which B-Schools Dominate Entrepreneurship?

Are you itching to start your own company and wondering which business schools would best help you achieve that dream? Entrepreneurship is a super popular course of study at today’s b-schools. As someone who has started …

entrepreneurshipAre you itching to start your own company and wondering which business schools would best help you achieve that dream? Entrepreneurship is a super popular course of study at today’s b-schools. As someone who has started more than one successful company, I can attest that I leveraged a lot of my MBA classes and resources into my business ventures.

Let’s take a look at the latest Poets & Quants listing of the best b-schools for aspiring entrepreneurs. Since 2013, Poets & Quants has ranked startups based on one criterion: venture capital-backed funding.

“For the first time, Harvard Business School cannot claim to have more startups on the list than any other school. After dominating last year’s list with 42 ventures (out of 100 on the list), the HBS machine has dropped to 24 ventures raising a combined $618.29 million,” Nathan Allen writes. “Meanwhile, Stanford’s Graduate School of Business (…) added a startup from last year’s list to tie HBS at 24 total ventures raising a combined $958.64 million.”

2017’s top business schools for aspiring entrepreneurs:

Harvard Business School: 24 companies
Stanford Graduate School of Business: 24 companies
The University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School: 12 companies
Columbia Business School: 11 companies
Northwestern’s Kellogg School of Management: 8 companies
MIT Sloan School of Management: 6 companies
NYU Stern School of Business: 5 companies
UC Berkeley Haas School of Business: 4 companies
UCLA Anderson School of Management: 3 companies
University of Texas Austin McCombs: 2 companies
The University of Virginia Darden School of Business: 2 companies

Sure, some of history’s most successful entrepreneurs did not go to business school, but the best MBA programs acknowledge they don’t actually create entrepreneurs…they merely nurture innate ability.

These elite programs offer a broad range of courses in entrepreneurship, as well as  opportunities for networking with established entrepreneurs, launching start-ups, and developing the skills needed to start successful businesses. Even if alumni don’t become entrepreneurs immediately after graduating, their MBA degree provides the career flexibility and the skills that help them start businesses years later.

The excellent piece in Poets & Quants takes an in-depth look at specific companies started by various alumni, as well as the role of entrepreneurship centers at the schools. To see the complete list of the top 100 MBA start-ups, check out the full data set from Poets & Quants here.

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Ask the AdCom: Share a Cool Company Born of Your MBA Program

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Ask the AdCom: Share a Cool Company Born of Your MBA Program

Hey everybody! We’re back with another installment of “Ask the AdCom,” where we share a wide range of tips and advice from admissions team members from a dozen top business schools. Since AdCom members are human, too, we …

Hey everybody! We’re back with another installment of “Ask the AdCom,” where we share a wide range of tips and advice from admissions team members from a dozen top business schools. Since AdCom members are human, too, we know our readers will enjoy seeing  a different side of what makes these guys tick.

This fun space is not really about the application process but more about real-life topics, like what’s a good book to readbest place to study, where you can find a killer meal near campus, and all the fun stuff happening at b-school that creates those lifelong, cherished memories for MBA students.

We hope you become inspired, too!

Today’s Question is: What’s a cool entrepreneurship project or company born out of your MBA program?

entrepreneurship at bschool

Kelly R. Wilson, Executive Director of Admissions at CMU Tepper School of Business, says that ModCloth – a vintage clothing, ecommerce business with hundreds of millions in annual revenue – sprang from the Tepper School MBA program.

Judi Byers, Executive Director of Admissions and Financial Aid at the Cornell Johnson Graduate School of Management, asked second-year MBA student Najeen Riazi for feedback, and she gave a shout-out for Big Red Bullet: Another bridge to NYC! and Nutribridge: an international effort to solve child nutrition and women’s financial independence at the same time.

Virginie Fougea, Associate Director of Admissions at INSEAD, says recent examples include Blablacar, a ridesharing service with the concept of connecting people who need to travel with drivers who have empty seats (Founder and CEO Frederic Mazzella, INSEAD MBA’07D). Or, Michel et Augustin, a French food brand, started by Michel de Rovira, MBA’04D but there are many others.

 Rodrigo Malta, Director of Admissions at UT McCombs School of Business, says that theTexas MBA powered start-up Beatbox Beverages struck a deal with business mogul Mark Cuban on the hit ABC show Shark Tank in October. For a one-third stake in the company, Cuban invested one million dollars. The three Texas MBA alums impressed the panel of judges with their entrepreneurial know-how and their clear strategy for the future of their company to ensure continued success. Beatbox has definitely been “booming” since the show aired, Malta says.

Morgan Bernstein, Executive Director of Full-Time MBA Admissions at UC Berkeley-Haas School of Business, shares many successful student startups: Revolution Foods, founded by ’06 MBA grads Kristin Groos Richmond and Kirsten Saenz Tobey, provides healthy meals for kids; Ashesi University in Ghana, a non-profit, private university, was founded by Patrick Awuah, MBA ’99; crowdfunding website Indiegogo was founded by Danae Ringelmann and Eric Schell, both MBA ’08; and Back to the Roots, purveyor of ready-to-grow and ready-to-eat products, from mushrooms to cereal, was founded by Alejandro Velez and Nikhil Arora, both BS ’09.

Shari Hubert, Associate Dean of MBA Admissions at Georgetown McDonough School of Business, points to alumni Michael Chasen of Blackboard; Egon Durban of Silver Lake, Jason McCarthy of GORuck; and Logan Soya of Aquicore.

John Roeder, Assistant Dean of Graduate Admissions at SMU Cox School of Business, points to Gabriella Draney Zielke, who is co-founder and CEO of Tech Wildcatters – a Top 10 seed accelerator for technology startups, and who recently launched Health Wildcatters, a healthcare-based seed accelerator.  Gabriella worked with the Caruth Center for Entrepreneurship at Cox while she pursued her MBA at Cox with a Strategy and Entrepreneurship concentration, Roeder says.

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The variety and success of these b-school bred companies is really inspiring, right? Look out for the #AskAdCom in our social media channels, and we’ll see you again next week when we check in to Ask the AdCom about some of the little-known fun facts about their schools!

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Ask the AdCom: Resources for MBA Students with Startup Fever

Hey everybody! We’re back with another installment of “Ask the AdCom,” where we share a wide range of tips and advice from admissions team members from a dozen top business schools. Since AdCom members are human, too, we …

Hey everybody! We’re back with another installment of “Ask the AdCom,” where we share a wide range of tips and advice from admissions team members from a dozen top business schools. Since AdCom members are human, too, we know our readers will enjoy seeing  a different side of what makes these guys tick.

This fun space is not really about the application process but more about real-life topics, like what’s a good book to readbest place to study, where you can find a killer meal near campus, and all the fun stuff happening at b-school that creates those lifelong, cherished memories for MBA students.

We hope you become inspired, too!

entrepreneurship at bschool

Today’s question is: What resources are available for student entrepreneurs?

Isser Gallogly, Assistant Dean of MBA Admissions at NYU Stern School of Business: The W.R. Berkley Innovation Lab includes an annual $200K Entrepreneurs Challenge.  This past year, 231 teams comprising more than 800 entrants from 16 schools at NYU competed in one of three challenges: New Venture, Social Venture and Technology Venture.

Melissa Fogerty, Director of Admissions at Yale School of Management: Students from across campus participate in the courses and programs run by our Program on Entrepreneurship, which hosts numerous entrepreneurship electives like Venture Capital & Private Equity Investments, Start-up Founder Practicum (a mechanism for SOM students to work on their start-up ventures for credit), Impact Investing, and New Ventures in Healthcare and the Life Sciences.

Our students also connect with their peers and faculty around Yale through the Yale Entrepreneurial Institute, a campus-wide convening space for entrepreneurs, to start new ventures. This points to one of the huge reasons we put so much energy into engaging with the rest of Yale: it gives our students the opportunity to build diverse teams around meaningful projects, and by doing so, to forge relationships that will benefit them throughout their careers.

Alex Lawrence, Assistant Dean of  MBA Admissions at UCLA Anderson School of Management: The Price Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, which includes the Anderson Venture Accelerator, 24 courses involving 20 faculty members, and Entrepreneur Association (student club) presents more than 150 events each year.

Kelly R. Wilson, Executive Director of Admissions at CMU Tepper School of Business: The Swartz Center for Entrepreneurship unites the Tepper School with the world’s top-ranked Computer Science college, acclaimed Engineering and Fine Arts schools, and students, faculty and innovation from across a campus that is acclaimed for its startups, research and new big ideas.

Allison Jamison, Admissions Director at Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business: Fuqua has a very active entrepreneurship community.  The Program 4 Entrepreneurs (P4E) is a great way for those interested in entrepreneurship to gain experience or grow an idea. If you have an idea for a start up, or want to be a part of a start up team, this is the place to start.  We also maintain a network of alumni entrepreneurs at DukeGEN that works with our staff, faculty, students, and alumni to advance entrepreneurial activities.

John Roeder, Assistant Dean Graduate Admissions at SMU Cox School of Business: Since its founding more than three decades ago, the Caruth Institute for Entrepreneurship has continuously developed innovative courses and programs to help students keep pace with the dynamic, rapidly changing field of entrepreneurship. They sponsor the Cox MBA Venture fund, the Southwest Venture Forum, and the Dallas 100 Awards, which is an annual event that identifies and honors the 100 fastest-growing privately held companies in the Dallas area.

Judi Byers, Executive Director of Admissions and Financial Aid at Cornell’s Johnson Graduate School of Management, tapped Najeen Riazi (MBA ’17) for input: Multiple internal resources at Cornell include a university-wide incubator and resource office, support for numerous case competitions, and graduate-level programming. Br Ventures is a seed-stage venture capital fund focused on providing funding to early-stage, high-growth businesses.

BR Consulting offers commercial and strategic consulting to startup companies, helping them bridge the gap between business idea and company growth. BR Microenterprise offers business advising and lending services to needs-based local entrepreneurs. BR Microenterprise is based at Johnson’s Center for Sustainable Global Enterprise in partnership with a local credit union.

BR Advisory assists on getting young companies off on the right legal track. BR Tech Transfer is a continuous business collaboration between our Entrepreneurship and Innovation Institute (EII) and the Cornell Center for Technology Enterprise and Commercialization to help commercialize more Cornell technology faster.

Shari Hubert, Associate Dean of  MBA Admissions at Georgetown’s McDonough School of Business: The Georgetown Entrepreneurship Initiative has created a vibrant community for entrepreneurs both on campus and within the D.C. community. Students can take advantage of Venture Competitions, StartUpHoyas Summer Launch Program, Entrepreneurs Fellows Program, and the 1776 Partnership Incubator in downtown Washington DC, among other offerings.

Morgan Bernstein, Executive Director of Full-Time MBA Admissions at UC Berkeley-Haas School of Business: The Berkeley-Haas Entrepreneurship Program (BHEP), is an umbrella program that supports startups & students interested in entrepreneurship, and also connects them with campus resources such as the SkyDeck accelerator—a joint program of Haas, Berkeley Engineering, and UC Berkeley’s Vice Chancellor for Research Office.

Also, our Dean’s Seed Fund provides funding to qualified startups that involve Haas students, and our start-up events such as LAUNCH and the Global Social Venture Competition give students a chance to pitch their business plans to prospective investors.

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It seems there’s no hotter topic at b-schools today than entrepreneurship, right?  Look out for the #AskAdCom in our social media channels, and we’ll see you again next week when we check in to Ask the AdCom about their favorite watering holes near campus!

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Columbia Business School Announces Changes to Curriculum

During Columbia Business School’s Start-Ups Week held earlier this month, the Eugene Lang Center for Entrepreneurship kicked off the event by announcing they are reorganizing its entrepreneurship curriculum to help students better choose their areas of …

During Columbia Business School’s Start-Ups Week held earlier this month, the Eugene Lang Center for Entrepreneurship kicked off the event by announcing they are reorganizing its entrepreneurship curriculum to help students better choose their areas of interest and plan their future career paths.
student entrrepreneursFor the uninitiated, Start-Ups Week is a four-day celebration of entrepreneurship that allows CBS students to network and build relationships with New York City’s fastest growing companies. The new curriculum changes focus on four categories:  where students are encouraged to think, start, scale, and invest and focus on different aspects of entrepreneurship.

CBS’s New Entrepreneurship Curriculum 

Roadmaps for the curriculum in entrepreneurship at Columbia Business School have recently been reorganized to enable students to quickly and easily understand what’s being offered and choose their areas of interest.  They are divided into the following categories:

  • THINK – this a curriculum  track for any student who would like to adopt an entrepreneurial way of thinking, problem solving and business growth and recognizes the value and importance of entrepreneurial thinking in today’s economy.
  • START – a curriculum track for students planning to start their own business during or after business school and these students are likely to be founders, CEO’s or hold some type of leadership role in that organization.
  • SCALE – a curriculum track for students interested in taking an existing business to the next stage, either growing their own business or a business founded by someone else or perhaps a family business that they will eventually control.
  • INVEST – a curriculum track for students looking to understand what is involved in investing in entrepreneurial companies and what it takes to become an angel investor.

 Students interested in entrepreneurship can also take advantage of the following programs at Columbia:

  • Lang Scholars – Structured as a semester-long independent study, in both the spring and fall, the Lang Scholars program pairs chosen students with teams selected to one of NYC’s top accelerator programs including Techstars, ERA and Dreamit. This semester 17 Columbia Business School students are paired with the 17 teams in the  Dreamit, accelerator.  Students benefit by experiencing entrepreneurship in a live setting, gaining exposure to the network and resources Dreamit brings while Dreamit companies benefit by gaining access to the world-class business knowledge, experience and talent of Columbia Business School MBA’s.
  • Fall Venture Fair – The Annual Fall Venture Fair provides students with the opportunity to practice their pitch and receive critical feedback from successful entrepreneurs and other knowledgeable practitioners from the Columbia Business School entrepreneurial community.

“We want students to understand the realities of entrepreneurship as early in their business school life cycle as possible so they can make the most informed choice about which career path to pursue,” says Vince Ponzo, Executive Director of the Lang Center. “We have created a unique, goal-oriented framework for the curriculum and programs designed to meet the long-term career objectives of our students.”

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What Does Columbia Business School Look for In Applicants?

Columbia Business School Fall 2017 MBA Essay Tips

Columbia Launches First Student-Run Investment Fund

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Alumni Gift Launches NYU Stern Venture Fellows Program

New York University Stern School of Business has announced the establishment of The NYU Stern Venture Fellows Program with a $1 million gift from technology executive and alumnus David Ko and his wife Jennifer Ko. With …

NYU Stern entrepreneurshipNew York University Stern School of Business has announced the establishment of The NYU Stern Venture Fellows Program with a $1 million gift from technology executive and alumnus David Ko and his wife Jennifer Ko.

With this gift, Stern MBAs will have the opportunity to apply to this new immersion program in lieu of a traditional summer internship and benefit from financial support, mentorship, workshops and access to NYC and Silicon Valley tech companies.

The launch of this program coincides with David’s appointment to Stern’s Board of Overseers and extends the commitment to education that he and his wife initiated in 2012 with the establishment of the Jennifer and David Y. Ko Family Endowed Undergraduate Scholarship at NYU Stern.

“We are grateful to the Ko family for their generosity and to David for his decision to get more deeply engaged with his alma mater and help us continue creating innovative new student experiences,” said Peter Henry, dean of NYU Stern.

“The NYU Stern Venture Fellows Program is an extraordinary opportunity for MBA students who come to Stern to set their entrepreneurial ambitions and dreams in motion.”

Incoming full-time MBA students will apply in Fall 2016 for consideration to become the first NYU Stern Venture Fellows. The program will start in Summer 2017 under the administration of Stern’s W.R. Berkley Innovation Lab and Office of Student Engagement.

It will provide each Fellow with a $10,000 stipend, a prototyping fee, workspace and access to a multi-week summer program featuring a “Silicon Valley Immersion Week” that includes company visits and access to VCs, mentors and Stern alumni.  Fellows will continue to receive mentorship support in their second year at Stern and can opt to earn course credit through a faculty-supervised independent study in which they can focus on their start up.

“I am thrilled to have the opportunity to help Stern MBAs transform their ideas into viable businesses through the resources that will be available to them from the NYU Stern Venture Fellows Program,” said Ko.  “My goal is to provide aspiring entrepreneurs with early, firsthand access to leaders in the Silicon Valley and Silicon Alley tech communities and help them get a jumpstart.”

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