School:Clark Atlanta University

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     Clark Atlanta University is a comprehensive, private, urban, coeducational institution of higher education with a predominantly African-American heritage. It offers undergraduate, graduate and professional degrees as well as certificate programs to students of diverse racial, ethnic, and socioeconomic backgrounds. The University was established in 1988 through the consolidation of its two parent institutions, Atlanta University (1865), the nation's first institution to award graduate degrees to African Americans, and Clark College (1869) the nation's first four-year liberal arts college to serve a primarily African-American student population.  

      Although Clark Atlanta University is in the early stages of developing an entrepreneurial ecosystem we do offer a few entrepreneurial opportunities. The School of Business at Clark Atlanta University makes great efforts to encourage entrepreneurship efforts of the students. Established within the Clark Atlanta University curriculum, freshman students as well as graduate students are exposed to entrepreneurship through the course which we look to establish across disciplines. Students also participate in various pitch competitions in which they prove their capabilities of establishing a working business model necessary for successful startup. The University also has a Shark tank competition this year which should inspire students and raise the profile of the innovation and entrepreneurship initiatives being enacted by both the UIF members and the Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship.The development of programs such as LEADWeek, which has a UIF candidate as its Co-chair, has provided students with the opportunity to receive input on the development of self. Moving forward, the primary goal of the team is to integrate the departmental silos on campus in order to usher in a new ecosystem which embraces collaboration, innovation and entrepreneurship. We are very optimistic that we will be successful at raising awareness and participation throughout the course of this school year.


Promoting Student Innovation and Entrepreneurship

       2.1 Courses

There are a number of courses offered to undergraduate and graduate students that promote entrepreneurship and innovation on campus.

CGER 102 - Intro to Engineering Design

CFAS 201 - Creative Fashion Presentation

CBUS 380 - Entrepreneurial Thinking

CBUS 381 - Financing Entrepreneurial Ventures

CBUS 382 - Marketing the Entrepreneurial Venture

CBUS 385 - Principles of Marketing

CBUS 480 - Entrepreneurship & Enterprise

CBUS 481 - Entrepreneurial Practicum

CBUS 482 Business Law for Entrepreneurs

CBUS 484 Small Business Management

CCIS 475 - Intro to Artificial Intelligence

CCIS 413 - Intro to Robotics

CGER 481 - Environmental Engineering

  2.2  Events

Lead Week - is an annual event sponsored by the School of Business which raises awareness in the areas of entrepreneurship, finance, marketing, social media, mass media, innovation and alumni affairs.

Capstone Projects- Are an integral part of the schools commitment to supporting project based learning. There are a number of capstone projects predominantly in the Arts & Sciences department.

Speaker Series-  a few workshops and speakers that promote entrepreneurship. There is a freshman success speaker series along with a case competition workshop that took place this year. In my opinion this is an area that the university can improve on. It would take very little effort to increase the number of events and workshops on campus.

Blackstone LaunchPad Ideas Competition- promoted by the Center for Innovation & entrepreneurial Development at CAU, it is designed to provide students with early-stage ideas to compete for various including cash prizes.

Panther Biz Expo- sponsored by PNC Bank and powered by CIED and Blackstone to showcase student vendor pop-up shops. Students win cash prizes based on how well they present their businesses.

Advanced Coding Workshop- Workshop to advance students' coding techniques and strategies from esteemed professionals.

Advanced 3D Printing Workshop- Workshop that teaches students advanced printing techniques that could benefit their business ventures or just simply improve their printing skills.

Regional and Local Development Efforts

CAU is currently trying to strengthen its connection with the community in regard to local and regional economic development. The university is committed to working with its stakeholders to build a better community and a better academic institution.

Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship

Is a new organization headed by entreprenuer David Duncan. The goal of the organization is to assist the student body in promoting innovation and entreprenuership on campus by having a liason between students and staff. This a new venture that looks very promising, so stay tuned!

Active Support in the University Technology Transfer Function

The CAU Office of Technology Transfer (T2)- is responsible for managing the protection and licensing of CAU discoveries with potential commercial value. By using intellectual property law to protect discoveries with potential commercial value, our office can hopefully encourage interested companies to invest the resources necessary to turn an early stage academic discovery into a commercial product.

IP Consulting-  Cynthia Parks and Collen Beard are the IP staff on hand to assist students through the process of protecting and developing their ideas and inventions.

Faculty Research Council- “The Faculty Research Council advises the Vice President Research on matters involving research infrastructure, maintenance of equipment, start-up support for faculty and in general support of standing up a more robust research enterprise at Clark Atlanta University”.

Center for Innovation & Entrepreneurial Development- established to develop a campus-wide entrepreneurship and innovation ecosystem. The center provides students, faculty, staff and alumni with opportunities to build their innovation and entrepreneurial skills through opportunities such as business and idea consulting, workshops, mentoring and business modeling.

Encouraging Faculty Innovation and Entrepreneurship

HBCU Innovation and Entrepreneurship Collaborative- The HBCU Collaborative is a cohort of 15 public and private HBCUs that are committed to participating in a multi-year collaboration that will foster innovation, commercialization and entrepreneurship on their respective campuses to improve student success by implementing new institutional courses, transforming faculty pedagogy and creating partnerships with government and private industries. This collaborative will build off the momentum that was established by the 2013 HBCU Innovation Summit held at Stanford University that was co-organized by UNCF, the NSF-funded National Center for Engineering Pathways to Innovation (Epicenter) and the Stanford Center for Professional Development.

Facilitating University-Industry Collaboration

Lead Week -is an annual event sponsored by the School of Business which raises awareness in the areas of entrepreneurship, finance, marketing, social media, mass media, innovation and alumni affairs. The event bridges the gap between the industry and the University.

Corporate Visits- There are approximately 25 visits to the School of Business annually to recruit top talent. In addition, over 500 companies participate in the AUC career fairs to recruit students as well. However, the school is working on developing relationships with organizations that are interested in research, innovation and entrepreneurship to enhance the scholastic CAU experience.

The AUC Academic and Career Development Organization- Has a wide variety of resources for students, listed below.

The AUCC Career Fair- Unique in person moment presents an incredible opportunity for emerging professionals who can innovate, creatively and efficiently manage projects, and contribute to an organization's strategic goals.

Related Links:

Clark Atlanta University

Clark Atlanta University Student Strategies

Landscape Canvas

University Innovation Fellows:

Spring 2017

Allen Lee

Madisyn Dudley

Spring 2015

Damon Willis

Tiffany Mitchell

Ariel Rogers

Aaron Chambers

Spring 2014

Lionel Cross Jr.