In May of 2011 the USASBE board approved important changes to these awards. The revisions resulted in the consolidation, re-classification, and clarification of evaluation criteria for multiple awards. There are now two classifications of awards: Excellence in Entrepreneurship Education and Special Recognition in Entrepreneurship Education Innovation. The revised categorization reflects the spirit that the future of organizations like USASBE is dependent upon the contributions and sharing of ideas and efforts among its membership.
The Excellence in Entrepreneurship Education Awards were established by USASBE to recognize excellence in entrepreneurship education at the programmatic level. Each is awarded on a competitive basis, with only one institution winning in each category in a given year. The categories are model program, specialty program, emerging program, and program abroad. The fourth category is for startup programs or for existing programs with at least 3 years of history that are undergoing a significant renovation. The final category recognizes the contribution of non-US institutions to entrepreneurial education. More detailed descriptions for each of these awards and the respective evaluation for each is provided in the section immediately below.
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Excellence in Entrepreneurship Education
Three National Model Program Awards (Undergraduate, Masters, and Ph.D.) are given to colleges and universities that have developed and currently still offer high quality and innovative programs, the purpose of which is to educate and train future generations of entrepreneurs. Three awards may be given each year — one to a model doctoral program, one to a model masters-level graduate program, and one to a model undergraduate program — for exemplary programs that reflect innovation, quality, comprehensiveness, sustainability, transferability, depth of support, and impact.
The Outstanding Specialty Entrepreneurship Program Award is given to a college or university that has developed and currently still offers a high quality and innovative program (i.e., compilation or series of courses at either the undergraduate or graduate level), the purpose of which is to educate and train future generations of entrepreneurs in a niche or specialty area. What distinguishes this award from other model program awards is the possibility the program's focus may be mission specific to the college or university, reflecting how it has developed a unique specialization or niche that distinguishes it from others, and not easily transferrable as a result. This award may be given each year for an exemplary program that reflects innovation, quality, comprehensiveness, sustainability, depth of support, and impact.
The Outstanding Emerging Entrepreneurship Program Award
The future of organizations like USASBE is dependent on the contributions / innovations of new member institutions (nascent entrepreneurship programs) that breathe vigor into programming. In order to incent new members, this award was created to recognize institutions or programs that have been in existence for three years or less (as measured from January 1), or that have gone through a major revision during the same time period. Specifically, the following are three suggested areas for considering how potential applicants might interpret the intent of the award:
- Launch, or re-launch of a program that has been in existence for some time, has been dormant, and recently has undergone a re-birth, that offers a new vision for an existing institution;
- Establishment of new concentrations or degree programs that look at education through a different lens; or
- Creation of a new, or re-launch of an entrepreneurship center that has been in existence for some time, has been dormant, and recently has undergone a re-birth.
This award may be given each year for an exemplary emerging program in any one of these three areas that reflects innovation, quality, potential viability, comprehensiveness, depth of support, sustainability, and impact.
The USASBE Outstanding Entrepreneurship Program Abroad Award
Foreign (non-US) programs constitute a growing portion of USASBE membership and increasingly influence our entrepreneurial pedagogy. This award has been established to recognize these important contributions and will be awarded to the "non-US” program submission that captures excellence in one or more of the following areas:
- Contribution to curriculum as measured by some combination of new courses, programs, centers, concentrations, or other domain context; or
- Recognition of specialty programs that are outstanding, unique, and have not been launched in many parts of the world – but could be
Special Recognition in Entrepreneurship Education Innovation Awards
The Excellence in Entrepreneurship Education Innovation Awards were established by USASBE to recognize innovation
in entrepreneurship education at the levels of:
Each year this award may be given each year to up to 3 individuals or their respective institutions for innovation in entrepreneurship education at one or a combination of these levels. These innovations in entrepreneurship education are assessed in terms of creativity, quality, sustainability, and impact. These are peer awards in that candidates for the awards will present to an audience of their peers at the annual conference and be awarded this honor based on a vote by the audience.
Nomination Guidelines and Additional Information
For nomination guidelines and additional information on awards procedures, please refer to the following document:
Click here to view a list (and samples of initial nomination materials) of past award winners.
As the quality of applications USASBE receives is exemplary, it is possible that one or more truly outstanding organizations or individuals may be nominated for a particular award and not receive it. To deal with this possibility as effectively and as fairly as possible, the following guidelines have been established:
- The finalists for each award will be announced to the membership of the USASBE and the public. The names of all other nominees will be kept confidential.
- All non-winning nominees, including the non-winning National Finalist, will be informed of the way in which they could strengthen their applications for the following years
- All non-winning nominees, including the non-winning National Finalist may submit re-applications for a particular award at any time. There is no prescribed period that any nominee must wait before resubmitting their nomination materials for any award. However, award winners may not reapply in the same category for a period of ten years.
Questions and Additional Information
Still have questions about the awards or nominations process? Please contact the USASBE Awards Chair:
Brad Hancock, USASBE Awards Chair
Director, Neeley Entrepreneurship Center
Texas Christian University