Entrepreneurship Program offers experiental learning

p26-main-image

Tina Beal, founder of Social Bug, speaks at LAUNCH, held at the McCrory Gardens Education and Visitor Center.

For the third year in a row, South Dakota State University hosted LAUNCH, the South Dakota entrepreneurship education conference. LAUNCH is a one-day event advancing entrepreneurship education throughout the state. It is offered to students, educators and economic development and community leaders who are given the chance to listen to speakers and attend breakout sessions—all aimed toward inspiring and enhancing the entrepreneurship-learning experience.

“It is an opportunity to bring students and other community members together to get inspired,” said Barb Heller, SDSU’s entrepreneurial studies coordinator.

This year, LAUNCH featured eight keynote speakers, industry professionals who spoke of their accomplishments and the steps they took to reach their goals.

New York City twin designers Shane and Shawn Ward shared their experience of launching their innovative shoe collection, SHANE&SHAWN in fall 2003 with the goal of making the most comfortable and hip fashion shoes ever.

New York City twin designers Shane and Shawn Ward shared their experience of launching their innovative shoe collection, SHANE&SHAWN in fall 2003 with the goal of making the most comfortable and hip fashion shoes ever.

“Outside the classroom, students have the opportunity to participate in a wide range of experiences from idea and business plan competitions to interacting with practicing entrepreneurs and the local business community,” said Craig Silvernagel, assistant professor of entrepreneurship and innovation management.

“LAUNCH provided a great opportunity for young entrepreneurs to gain insights from successful entrepreneur stories,” said Jason Herrboldt, a junior entrepreneurial studies student. “It was helpful to hear what worked when creating and starting a business and what they found to be difficult. It was an excellent event for any student who wants to create a future business.”

SDSU has been offering classes in entrepreneurial studies since 2003 with additional programs to enhance student and faculty learning.

Experiential learning is an important component of entrepreneurship education at SDSU. Students have the opportunity to “learn by doing” both in and out of the classroom, according to Heller.

Kelsey Holland

Leave a Reply