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Excellence in Entrepreneurship Education Awards

In 2017, the USASBE members voted to adopt an updated mission:

USASBE is an inclusive community advancing entrepreneurship education through bold teaching, scholarship, and practice. The new mission called for a critical review of the annual conference awards. The review resulted in recommendations to better align with the new USASBE mission.  Later in 2017, the USASBE board adopted the important changes reflected below. 


Model and Emerging Program Awards

The National Model & Emerging Program Awards were established by USASBE to recognize high quality entrepreneurial education at the program level, characterized as comprehensive,

innovative, deeply supported, and offering the potential for high impact.


The National Model Program Award is 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.


Emerging 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:

The following are three suggested areas for considering how potential applicants might interpret the intent of this the award:

Criteria for this award are broad. Following are three suggested areas for how you might interpret the award:

o Creation of a new Entrepreneurial Center within the past three years that offers a new vision than that found in most longer lived programs;

o Establishing new concentrations or degree programs that look at education through a different lens;

o Re-launch of a program that has been in existence for some time, has been dormant, and recently has undergone a re-birth. It offers a new vision for an existing institution


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.



Excellence in Pedagogical Innovation Award and Excellence in Co-Curricular Innovation Award were established by USASBE to recognize innovation in entrepreneurial education at an individual level.

Each year these awards are given to individuals for innovation in entrepreneurship education. 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


Self-nominations for awards are not only acceptable, they are encouraged. Typically, the Entrepreneurship Pedagogy Division receives a number of nominations for each of its different national awards. Consequently, it is not only possible, but likely that a specific entry will not be selected as a National Finalist. As a result, any organization or individual may submit nominations in more than one category. However, no organization or individual may be a finalist in more than one category in any particular year. Should an organization or individual submit more than one nomination and be selected as a finalist in more than one category, they must choose, from among the categories in which they were selected as a finalist, the category in which they will compete, and withdraw all their other nominations for that year.


Submit nominations here


Content of Initial Nomination Materials (STAGE 1: DUE about October 15th)

The only material that needs to be submitted initially is an Executive Summary. This should be no more than 5 pages long, and should contain the information described below. The deadline for submission of all initial nomination materials is October 3rd.


The information to be covered in the Executive Summary includes the following:

  1. A title page that contains the following information:
    1. The name of the individual or school being nominated
    2. The award for which the individual or school is being nominated
    3. The name of the person submitting the nomination
  2. Up to two pages of text that describe:
    1. The name of the nominee
    2. The purpose and/or mission of the nominated program, course or pedagogy
    3. The name, address, phone number and fax number of a person who can provide any additional materials needed
    4. The primary objectives of the program, pedagogy, teaching, scholarship, or outreach
    5. An abbreviated description of the program, pedagogy, teaching, scholarship, or outreach
    6. Unique aspects and features of the program, pedagogy, teaching, scholarship, or outreach
    7. Sources of funding and/or support for the program, pedagogy, teaching, scholarship, or outreach
    8. Program, pedagogy, or teaching benefits for its students; scholarship or outreach benefits for students or other stakeholders (please identify)
    9. Program, pedagogy, teaching, scholarship, or outreach outcomes, both short and long term
  3. Up to two pages of exhibits (i.e.: charts, diagrams, figures, tables, etc.) – These may be used to more fully explain or clarify the text. Information about suggested outlines and topics to cover are provided to indicate minimum requirements related to the nomination and should be adjusted to reflect the specifics of an individual submission. Examples of initial nomination materials of previous winners can be viewed on the USASBE website at the following URL:
  4. Service commitment letter – As part of the nomination for the award, winners must commit to being available to judge the year following the award and at least two more times in the next 5 years. A letter from the applicant’s Dean is required to indicate support for this commitment and should be included with the nomination.
  5. Submission of Initial Nomination Materials – Initial materials should come as a single pdf or MS Word file.

Submit at


Content of Finalist Nomination Materials (STAGE 2: DUE about December 15th)

If selected as a finalist a second packet of materials elaborating on the initial nomination executive summary must be submitted by December 10th.

The Final Nomination Package should contain the following items:

a.     A five-page executive summary of the program, course or pedagogy involved.

b.     A set of supporting materials that further describe and/or document the various aspects of the program, course, or pedagogy involved. This could include syllabi, promotional materials, summaries of student comments or evaluations, etc.

c.     A set of presentation slides that will be shared at the finalist presentations at the annual conference. The presentation slides should summarize the key aspects of the program, course or pedagogy, as well as discuss how the aforementioned satisfy the primary Entrepreneurship Education Award criteria described below.

d.     A statement of commitment naming the representative(s) of the institution and/or program who will attend the conference and present to the finalist judges panel, in person. (Note: failure to attend and present in person will result in forfeiture of the nomination.)

e.     A statement of commitment naming the representative(s) of the institution and/or program, that if your nomination receives the award, who will attend the conference and be available to judge this category twice in the subsequent five years. This statement reflects USASBE’s commitment to continuous improvement in the award submissions and ensures a consistency of quality and fairness of process by having experienced judges.

f.      Completion of a Finalist Information form with permission signature to use the information for marketing and promotional purposes by USASBE.

g.     Submission of Final Nomination Package – Five copies of the Final Nomination Package should be sent via regular mail to the Pedagogy Awards Chair: Include name and address of current chair.

h.     Please note that the Final Nomination Package should be submitted as a printed document and not in electronic format.


Final Round Evaluation and Selection Process (At January conference).  Finalists will make a scheduled presentation before a panel of judges at the National Conference.  The specific time and location will be provided prior to the conference. The selection of the National Award Winners will be made at the USASBE National Meeting, based on the verbal presentations made by each finalist, as well as the revised nomination materials submitted as part of the Final Nomination Package. Each finalist will present for 20 minutes to a panel of judges.



Reapplication Guidelines


Only one winner is named in each Model Program Category in any year. As a consequence, it is quite possible that one or more truly outstanding organizations or individuals may be nominated for a particular award and yet not receive it because an even more outstanding candidate was nominated in the same year. To deal with this possibility as effectively and as fairly as possible, the following guidelines have been established:

  1. 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.
  2. 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 and are encouraged to submit applications for a particular award at any future USASBE conference.  There is no prescribed period that any nominee must wait before resubmitting their nomination materials for any award
  3. If in the opinion of the Finalist Reviewers, a particular non-winning National Finalist is deemed especially strong, that nominee will be automatically included in that award competition for the next year, unless the nominee specifically asks not to be so included. [Note: they do not, however, automatically become a finalist the next year; as is the case with Entrepreneurship Educator of the Year Outstanding Candidates.]
  4. Award recipients may not be nominated for any award they received for a period of ten years after receiving their award.


Condition of Submission

By submitting this nomination for consideration, the nominator(s) agree on behalf of themselves and the programs and individuals included in the nomination that USASBE has the rights to publish the award nomination and related materials (PowerPoint slides, etc.) of award winning entries to the USASBE website for use as a resource by USASBE members.


Questions and Additional Information


Still have questions about the awards or nominations process? Please contact -


Megan Matthews, USASBE Awards Chair
University of Wisconsin- Whitewater


Jeff Vanevenhoven, Sr. V.P. Programming

University of Wisconsin-Whitewater



Julie Shields, 2018 Conference Chair

Millikin University








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