Entrepreneurship and Information Management

Entrepreneurship Education: Engineering a Pracademic Approach

  • M. D. Wilson (Purdue University)
  • Eric Holloway (Purdue University)
  • S. Jimmy Gandhi (California State University - Northridge)


Innovation and entrepreneurship are becoming increasingly important as we rely on economies to create jobs around the globe. And yet, considering the myriad and dynamic business environments of the 21st century and ever increasing consumer power, the risk of entrepreneurial activity has increased considerably. Consequently, we need to educate engineers in an innovative manner and fundamentally change the teaching methods, curriculum, and research in entrepreneurship education. Applying the scholarship of teaching and learning (SoTL) to entrepreneurship with similar rigor can increase the odds of being successful engineering entrepreneurs. Still, faculty and administrators of engineering programs are hesitant to introduce courses into an engineering curriculum outside of engineering fundaments. The paradox, however, is that non-core engineering courses including leadership and engineering management can help students develop highly desired attributes that contribute to career and industry success.

In this paper, the authors look at current trends in entrepreneurship education and will propose a potential new approach to innovation and entrepreneurship education for engineers in the 21st century. This approach will focus on pracademic (practical / professional and academic) learning concepts that are both engaging and worthwhile for student-centered learning. Supplementary pedagogical approaches are necessary to augment classroom learning for aligning active-learning topics within innovative course frameworks. This new approach will focus on four topics: innovation in teaching methods, introducing leadership education into the entrepreneurship curriculum, quality within systems engineering management, and using rigorous research to drive transformational change in entrepreneurship education. The pracademic approach will be taught as a workshop series or as courses in the entrepreneurship domain and will be presented as part of this paper where methods, leadership, quality, and rigorous research are the central tenets the authors propose for serious and thrivable consideration.

How to Cite:

Wilson, M. D. & Holloway, E. & Gandhi, S. J., (2014) “Entrepreneurship Education: Engineering a Pracademic Approach”, 2014 ASEE North Midwest Section Conference 2014(1), 1-12. doi: https://doi.org/10.17077/aseenmw2014.1038

Rights: Copyright © 2014, M.D. Wilson, Eric Holloway, S. Jimmy Gandhi

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Published on
17 Oct 2014
Peer Reviewed