Helping students develop their networks through on- and off-campus interactions with successful entrepreneurs and innovators
The INSPIRE series brings successful entrepreneurs from all fields to campus to provide role models for students. In addition to attending the keynote address or panel discussion, students meet with these entrepreneurs individually, during classes, and in small groups. These visits also include meetings over lunch or dinner to allow for a less formal interaction, provide an opportunity for students to build their networks, and offer students the chance to get feedback on their ideas from professionals who have been in their shoes.
Students also develop their networks through off-campus activities, such as externships, shadowing, and mentoring provided by entrepreneurs and other professionals on location.
How often do entrepreneurs come to campus?
When you consider the innovative focus of our faculty, staff and students, entrepreneurs are on our campus every day! The INSPIRE series hosts four signature events each year, two in the fall and two in the spring. We also co-sponsor INSPIRE events with other organizations on campus, such as the Center for Science and the Common Good, and various departments and programs.
What does an on-campus INSPIRE event look like?
Unlike most academic speaker series, with INSPIRE the evening talk is just the culmination of a full day of activities. Our visitors spend a significant portion of the day with us and visit classes, participate in small group discussions, interact with students over meals etc.
What does an off-campus INSPIRE event look like?
This program is still in development but we have plans for off-campus networking opportunities such as a women’s networking event where our students will interact with successful women entrepreneurs at a local in center city Philadelphia, and an externship experience for students who want to visit New York City and shadow entrepreneurs who work in that fast-paced environment. In the past, we were able to provided financial (travel) support for a student who spent part of Winter Break at an incubator in Gainesville, Florida, interacting with several companies who are developing innovative wellness and fitness technology businesses.
How can I take advantage of these opportunities?
Just sign up! As with all of our programs, these opportunities are available to ANY student from ANY major in ANY year.