Baylor Launches Entrepreneurship Living-Learning Center

Feb. 2, 2009

- Partnership with Hankamer School of Business is university's ninth LLC -

Media contact: Lori Fogleman, director of media communications, (254) 710-6275

Baylor University soon will have students participating in its ninth Living-Learning Center, a nationally successful program that allows students to connect their residential experience with their academic major or a related interest.

The department of management and entrepreneurship at Baylor's Hankamer School of Business, in partnership with Campus Living and Learning, will launch a living-learning community for entrepreneurially-minded students from all fields of study, beginning in fall 2009.

The Entrepreneurship Living-Learning Center (ENT-LLC) will open this fall in North Village, providing approximately 100 students students with a unique living environment specifically designed to enhance and enrich their academic experience. The current Entrepreneurship and Creative Leadership Engaged Learning Group will merge into the ENT-LLC, with 47 students from that group participating in the launch.

"Entrepreneurship is excited about this new partnership, which will provide students from all disciplines access to a broader set of entrepreneurial knowledge and skills than ever before," said Dr. Kendall Artz, chair of management and entrepreneurship and director of the Baylor Entrepreneurship Program. "The fundamental purpose of the ENT-LLC is to assist students in fully developing their entrepreneurial capabilities by offering mentoring between upperclassmen and freshmen, access to faculty, discussion groups, lab support, and opportunities to work with practicing entrepreneurs."

The creation of the new living-learning center marks the ninth partnership between an academic unit and Campus Living and Learning. The ENT-LLC will add to the more than 1,400 students currently participating in:

    • Air Force ROTC-LLC,
    • Brooks Residential College,
    • Engaged Learning Groups,
    • Engineering and Computer Science-LLC,
    • Global Community-LLC,
    • Honors Residential College,
    • Leadership-LLC and
    • Outdoor Adventure-LLC.

"Renowned economist Joseph Schumpeter once said that entrepreneurship 'is the axis on which everything turns,'" said Mary Abrahams, associate director of the John F. Baugh Center for Entrepreneurship at Baylor's business school and program director for the ENT-LLC. "The ability of a person to dream, to create, to pursue opportunities through one's own leadership is the engine that drives mankind's development."

Living-learning centers in residence halls have gained national support at major universities for their ability to attract and retain exceptional students seeking a residential experience that is linked to their academic major or a related interest. Baylor officials believe when students join this small, close-knit community, they strike a balance between serious intellectual pursuits and social interaction that reinforces experiences in the classroom and living room.

"Students learn holistically, and this fact was intuitively known by the founders of American colleges and universities," said Dr. Frank Shushok, dean for student learning and engagement at Baylor. "Over the last 100 years, however, a shift in practice has in many ways gradually separated the co-curricular experience from the academic one. This partnership with entrepreneurship is a correction in course, a movement back to intricately weaving together the academic, social and spiritual life for the sake of profound learning."

In most instances, Shushok said, living-learning programs require students to enroll in at least one common course, require a special admission process and may include additional expectations.

Research on Baylor's living-learning communities indicates such programs help students have more discussions regarding academics, career issues and socio-cultural issues with peers, become more satisfied with their college experience, have greater interaction with faculty and feel a higher level of academic support.

For more information, contact Abrahams at 710-4159 or Shushok at 710-6957.

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