On August 15 and 16, over 110 college and university educators met in Lisle, Illinois for the third annual Fellows Summit. The Summit is the kickoff of the Coleman Foundation Faculty Entrepreneurship Fellowship Program which exists primarily to build support for self-employment education in non-business departments across the campuses of participating schools.
Summit attendees represented 19 colleges and universities and consisted of more than 60 Fellows new to the program and almost 30 who had previously received a fellowship. Additionally, Project Directors from each institution (normally the leading entrepreneurship scholar on their campus) and assisting co-directors rounded out the community of practice which gathered at the Hilton Hotel and Conference Center. The event was led by Joseph Roberts, Program Director of the Coleman Fellows Program with assistance by the staff of the Coleman Foundation.
To prepare Fellows for the academic year, workshops were conducted by Project Directors from the program on topics such as Opportunity Recognition, Developing Feasibility Plans and Arts Entrepreneurship. Small group roundtable discussions addressed topics such as Entrepreneurship Finance, Law and Marketing. Veteran Fellows led discussions on how to incorporate applied and experiential learning methods and shared best practices for cross-disciplinary entrepreneurship teaching.
Another goal of the Summit is to connect Fellows to one another and build the Coleman Foundation Entrepreneurship Community of Practice (or "Coffee Cup"). The Summit was designed to offer multiple opportunities for networking among participants. An evening event at The Morton Arboretum, an internationally recognized outdoor tree museum on 1,700 acres, enabled Summit participants to meet and connect around common teaching interests.
After the Summit, Fellows return to their campuses and begin incorporation of self-employment concepts into courses taught in their disciplines which range from Astronomy and Performing Arts to Public Health and Biomedical Engineering. Ongoing programming will include monthly web-meetings of the community and contributions to the program's web site, located at www.colemanfellows.com,.