By Lassonde Entrepreneur Institute
The University of Utah continues to lead in entrepreneurship education.
The David Eccles School of Business and its Lassonde Entrepreneur Institute jumped to No. 17 for graduate and No. 24 for undergraduate entrepreneur programs in the new rankings announced today by the Princeton Review. Last year, the U ranked No. 23 for graduate programs. The U’s undergraduate entrepreneur program was not included in the top 25 last year.
The new ranking comes as the business school has made major expansions to its many entrepreneurship offerings, which now total 32 programs that reached 3,400 students from all majors and backgrounds during the 2014-15 academic year.
Among the biggest developments is Lassonde Studios, a $45 million building with 400 student residences and a 20,000-square-foot “garage” open to all students to build prototypes and launch companies. The facility will open in fall 2016. All students can apply now to live in the facility (apply at lassonde.utah.edu/studios).
The business school also has continued to provide strong opportunities in and out of the classroom.
In the classroom, students can choose from a rapidly growing number of options. The school offers a major and minor in entrepreneurship and an interdisciplinary certificate available to all undergraduate students. Next year, thebusiness school expects to add an interdisciplinary certificate for graduate students and a master’s degree in innovation management.
Beyond the classroom, the U continues to be among the best schools for prize money available to student entrepreneurs, with the support of donors like Zions Bank. The U’s programs awarded $660,000 in cash to student projects in 2014-15.
Taylor Randall, dean of the David Eccles School of Business, explained the significance of the new ranking.
“Entrepreneurship is one of our core strengths at the Eccles School,” Randall said. “Our founder, David Eccles, was one of the first entrepreneurs in Utah, and we are living up to his legacy. We have an amazing entrepreneurship program, and we are highly entrepreneurial in how we approach business education. We experiment with new ideas, and when we find something that works, we run with it.”
All related programs at the U advocate hands-on learning. Every student who takes entrepreneurship classes or participates in extracurricular programs is encouraged to join a team, develop a product or service and prepare a business plan.
Launching successful startup companies is important, but that’s not the only goal, said Troy D’Ambrosio, executive director of the Lassonde Institute, an interdisciplinary division of the business school.
“We invite all students to take what they’re learning in class and apply it to something they’re passionate about,” D’Ambrosio said. “Some students are part of a team that starts a company, and they become very successful as entrepreneurs. Others gain great experience and build networks and, as a result, get better jobs.”
The Princeton Review ranks schools across the country based on a wide range of data including faculty, courses and activities outside the classroom. It reports the top 50 schools for entrepreneurship – 25 undergraduate and 25 graduate. It has reported these lists annually since 2006 in partnership with Entrepreneur Media Inc., publisher of Entrepreneur magazine.
Find the complete rankings online at princetonreview.com/entrepreneur or entrepreneur.com/topcolleges. Learn more about the David Eccles School of Business at eccles.utah.edu and the Lassonde Institute at lassonde.utah.edu.