Priorities:University of New Haven - Student Priorities

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Strategy #1: Implementation

Innovation & Entrepreneurship Living Learning Community (IE-LLC) 

The Living Learning Communities are the epitome of experiential education and can serve as a catalyst for I&E implementation efforts.  The Innovation & Entrepreneurship LLC (IE-LLC) will help students in all majors and disciplines who want to extend collaboration outside of the classroom and into a residential setting. Specifically, the IE-LLC will develop and strengthen innovation and entrepreneurship skills throughout the course of the academic year for students. Additionally, it will provide incentive and enhancement for upperclassmen residential life. The University of New Haven serves as a leader in experiential education.  

Entrepreneurial Engineering Living Learning Community (E2-LLC)

Efforts are continuing to develop and maintain the Entrepreneurial Engineering Living Learning Community. The E2-LLC offers a variety of enriching activities, including monthly discussion dinners, 24 Hour Imagination Quests, and weekly meetings with the E2-LLC student coordinator. The E2-LLC provides its’ members the opportunity to pursue feasible projects outside of their academic work. The E2- LLC also provides its members the chance to participate in a threshold level of activities over their four years in order to earn a certificate. The Entrepreneurial Thinkers Certificate will give students an edge in today's competitive job marketplace. E2- LLC does not require separate housing or fees, but it does require membership in the Engineering LLC. Think of it as a supplement to the Engineering LLC. University of New Haven is proudly a member of KEEN, a collaboration of universities that strive to instill an entrepreneurial mindset in undergraduate engineering and technology students. KEEN’s mission is to graduate engineers with an entrepreneurial mindset so they can create personal, economic, and societal value through a lifetime of meaningful work. Graduates of KEEN schools will be prepared to identify new technology-based business opportunities in their engineering disciplines. This network of colleges creates synergy between member institutions that takes advantage of the network’s collective faculty in a manner that transcends an individual university’s status.  


EMpwr (Entrepreneurial Mindset Power) is a new recognized student organization that promotes I&E and involves all majors. The five pillars of EMpwr are:

  1. Leadership: Identify and pursue opportunities to develop the mindset, skillset, and world view related to being entrepreneurial. 
  2. Service: Address the local needs and apply the mindset to serve the community. 
  3. Outreach: Influence the future leaders, inspire innovators, and participate in enterprise. 
  4. Mentorship: Create meaningful peer to peer and professional relationships critical for networking and development of the individual mindset. 
  5. Competition: Innovate ideas and create novel solutions to real-world problems… Front-end of design with emphasis on the mindset.

Strategy #2: Awareness

Innovation & Entrepreneurship Newsletter

Currently, there is no newsletter dedicated to I&E related news. There should be a newsletter, by print, email, or both, that places focus on the developing the entrepreneurial mindset and reporting recent innovations. For example, most individuals are aware about the popular product, the Sperry Boat Shoe. However, the majority are unaware of its origins. Inventor and sailor Paul Sperry slipped on a boat and fell overboard. The traumatic experience inspired him to develop a non-slip shoe. He observed his cocker spaniel's superior traction capabilties as it ran down an icy hill without slipping thanks to the grooves within its paws. The patented technology has evolved into a multi-billion dollar product and navy item still used today. Similar stories should be shared to inspire future innovators and to promote thinking above and beyond. 

Entrepreneurship Hour 

The University of New Haven has its own radio station that broadcasts various musics and shows. Often, it encourages colleges and clubs to advertise events or facilitate hour-long discussions. There should be an hour dedicated to a conversation that promotes I&E and makes students and faculty aware of I&E events on campus. A possible candidate to host the show could be the newly initiated club EMpwr (Entrepreneurial Mindset Power).

Strategy #3: Promotion

Discussion Dinners  

The E2-LLC has piloted a series of discussion dinners that have proven successful in the past year and a half. Starting at 6:30 PM, students of all majors (mostly engineering) gather for a meal, socialize, and then participate in an interactive discussion centered around innovation and entrepreneurship. Focus is placed on curiosity, creating value, and making connections. EMpwr has been cosponsoring discussion dinners. There are hopes to expand the discussion dinners to include more participants and encourage more majors to attend. 

24 Hour Imagination Quest 

The 24 Hour IQ is inspired by Villanova University and will be held for the second time this upcoming spring. In the span of 24 (non-consecutive!) hours, randomized groups of students must get inspired, find opportunities, and create a business proposition. The weekend-long competition yields cash prizes to the top three winners and provides excellent first-hand innovation and entrepreneurship experiences.


The KEEN Summer Interdisciplinary Design Experience (K-SIDE) will be a week and a half long intensive program offered during May at the University of New Haven. Inspired by Bucknell University, interdisciplinary teams work for no credit or pay to imagine, prototype and pitch a device that will contribute to the solution of a social problem. More details will come as the event nears.

Strategy #4: Resources 


Currently, there are many opportunities at the University of New Haven available to students. However, not all may be aware of events and programs that are offered. Additionally, some students may need guidance. The E2-LLC hires a student peer mentor and coordinator to faciliate events and connect students with opportunities. The University should collectively work towards implementing more peer mentors, whether staff or student mentors, to motivate and inform students of I&E opportunities and events. 

Strategy #5: Curriculum  


The Kern Entrepreneurial Engineering Network (KEEN) has been providing grant money to the University of New Haven to implement programs that promote I&E within the engineering curriculum. Initiatives include Engineering Applied Science (EASC) classes such as Intro to Engineering (1107 P), Project Management (2232), and Global Solutions to Sustainability (3300). KEEN modules implemented into classes place a focus on I&E and make useful connections. The engineering department should continue its work with KEEN, and other departments should use the KEEN iniatives as models for similar I&E implementation.

Service Learning 

Service Learning is a component of specific courses that look to go beyond the classroom. Experiential education states that the best way to learn is by doing, therefore more courses should implement service learning initiatives to encourage more real-world encounters. An example is Civil Engineering Systems (CIVL 2218) where the class (Spring 2015) was required to survey the conditions of the City of West Haven's sidewalks and create a State of Repair report to present in front of City Hall.

Related Links 

Written by Daniel_delgado