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The Strategic Plan

The following is a list of strategies, tactics, and goals for the entrepreneurial students and faculty at Norwich University.

Strategy #1: Grow The Entrepreneurship and Innovation Club

Norwich has a great core group of students that are working extremely hard to grow the entrepreneurship and innovation ecosystem around campus. The club is working diligently on the strategies below, but with low club membership they can only tackle one idea at a time. Currently, the club membership is composed of engineering and business students. With a growth in membership we could assess more ideas and open more opportunities for students to pursue their own ideas. 

Tactics and Dates:

  • Hosting a social event for students and faculty to mingle, ideate together, and collaborate on new opportunities available to the student body. - Spring 2014
  • Making connections with other student groups on campus that are interested in helping with the goal of growing the entrepreneurial ecosystem. - By the start of the fall semester 2014
  • Starting to promote new classes in entrepreneurship in the hopes that entrepreneurship education will grow interest in the club's ideas. - A main goal of the club for the foreseeable future
  • Reaching out to professors of all disciplines so that they will recommend students who show promise in entrepreneurship and innovation. - Spring and Fall 2014
  • Starting a better propaganda campaign. Currently, the club does little for publicity and if we could find ways to better reach students without being an inconvenience, we could see a growth in interest. - Fall 2014
  • Bringing in speakers that will connect with students without the large lecture setting. Students are more likely to engage the speaker and learn from them in a smaller classroom-like setting. - Fall 2014
  • Planning more trips to local businesses and innovation centers to learn about what happens in the real world and see it first hand. - Spring and Fall 2014

Strategy #2: Host More Events That Engage Students in Entrepreneurship and Innovation

The current speaker series is great and students who are interested in the topics often come away inspired. It would be great to bring in speakers who not only lecture about their work, but also engage in the students' work. Students could have more opportunities to pitch ideas to industry professionals and receive feedback on those ideas. The speakers could also bring an interactive session element, where the student could be working on small problems or projects to help promote entrepreneurship and innovation. 

Strategy #3: Offer an Entrepreneurship Minor

Student interest in entrepreneurship is high all across the nation, and education is this field will promote great things for the university. The minor will help educate students on the ins and outs of owning their own company. With this education, students could leave Norwich ready to start their own business while also knowing the ways around their respective disciplines. Entrepreneurship could spark an innovation and business connection for Norwich students and faculty. 

Strategy #4: Contact the Local Entrepreneurship Community and Get Involved

Vermont is a great state for small business entrepreneurship. It would be great to involve our local community in the ideas we have for promoting entrepreneurship and innovation. The idea of owning your own business is growing, and if students could engage in public workshops and in opening up resources for the community we could produce some great changes. Working with the local community on opening up new resources for students and community members alike is great for public relations! 

Strategy #5: Make Interdisciplinary Connections

The small school community that Norwich offers is great for collaboration between disciplines. Students in the technology majors could work with business majors on starting businesses based around new and innovative technology. Nursing students who are looking to start their own home nursing service could learn aspects of business management from the business majors, and can produce new ideas about how they can make the home nursing business run more smoothly. Arts and Architecture students could engage in new sustainable design with the engineering majors. When there is interaction between the students from different majors, each student brings something great to the table and with this collaboration the possibilities are endless. 

Strategy #6: Designate a Creation Space for Students

A space separate from school labs and classrooms will go a long way in promoting interdisciplinary collaboration; a place where students can go to ideate and prototype for their own ideas, separate from the classroom. The space would offer an area for students to collaborate and test ideas without the pressure of getting a good grade or the stress of failing. The student could do everything from coming up with an initial idea to getting ready to pitch the idea to an investor. The space could also offer time slots for work in the machine shop or with the 3D-printers so that the student with an idea can move forward in the design process. 

Tactics and Dates:

  • With a growth in the students interested in entrepreneurship and innovation the space would be a desired location. - Spring/Fall 2014 through Fall 2015 
  • When a student has an idea, the space would be used to pursue that idea; the tactic is to motivate students to pursue their own ideas. - Spring 2015 through Spring 2016
  • Talks with the undergraduate research department on ideas and possible funding. - Spring 2015
  • Find and collaborate with outside sources. Get the community involved and look for possible locations outside the campus. - Fall 2015
  • Host a design competition for students to bring forth their ideas on how the space should look. - Spring 2016 
  • Contact alumni and other outside resources for funding and MAKE IT HAPPEN!!! - Fall 2016                             

Strategy #7: Alumni

The alumni base at Norwich is fantastic! We should look to make connections with alumni who have started their own companies. The alumni could help fund certain events and innovations, as well as be guest speakers and judges for competitions. Alumni who have been in the same situations as students with ideas and start-ups could connect and offer mentorship to the student entrepreneur. 

Related Links

<a href="Jacob%20Keasbey">Jacob Keasbey</a>

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