Baylor's Upton to Receive Freedoms Foundation Award

Feb. 7, 1996

by Alan Hunt

WACO, Texas - Dr. Nancy B. Upton, director of Baylor University's John F. Baugh Center for Entrepreneurship, has been selected by the Freedoms Foundation at Valley Forge to receive a Leavey Award for Excellence in Private Enterprise Education.

The foundation's Leavey Awards program recognizes educators who have demonstrated an innovative way of teaching the private enterprise system to junior high, high school or college level students. She will receive a $7,500 cash award and a plaque at a dinner and ceremony on Feb. 27 in Beverly Hills, Calif.

The awards program, now in its 19th year, is endowed by The Thomas and Dorothy Leavey Foundation of Los Angeles. Since the program's inception, 274 awards totaling more than $2 million have been distributed to educators in 44 states.

Upton, who is one of 18 selected to receive a Leavey Award, was honored for her innovative course titled "Venture Initiation." She requires her students to form teams and start actual businesses, including a complete evaluation of the type of company they will initiate and operate during the semester. Students prepare and present a mini-business plan and then, during the semester, operate their firms with the final plan being an analysis of how actual operations compare to their plan. Both research and theory are integrated into the exercise to acquaint students with not only how entrepreneurs behave, but why.

The honorees were selected by a panel of six jurors, including Dr. John M. Templeton, Jr., president of The John Templeton Foundation, Radnor, Pa; William E. Simon, president of the John M. Olin Foundation of New York; and Dr. Charles I. Plosser, dean of the William E. Simon Graduate School of Business Administration, University of Rochester, N.Y.

Headquartered in historic Valley Forge, Pa., the Freedoms Foundation is a nonprofit, nonpartisan, nonsectarian organization dedicated to effectively communicating to young people the principles upon which the United States was founded and the balance of rights and responsibilities of today's increasingly diverse society.

Upton, who has been a member of the Baylor faculty since 1983, recently was selected as the recipient of the Southwestern Business Deans' Association award for Innovative Achievement in Curriculum Design and Program Development. The award honors the curriculum of the John F. Baugh Center for Entrepreneurship, which Upton directs, and the programs of the Institute for Family Business, which she founded in 1987 and also directs.

The Baugh Center for Entrepreneurship was recently ranked fourth in the nation in a survey of top business schools by U.S. News and World Report. The Baugh Center also was ranked by Success magazine in its list of the nation's top 25 business schools for entrepreneurs. Upton also was recently named Entrepreneurship Educator of the Year by the U.S. Association for Small Business and Entrepreneurship. She holds the Ben H. Williams Professorship in Entrepreneurship at Baylor and is also serving as a scholar-in-residence at the Kansas City-based Kauffman Foundation's Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership Inc. for the 1995-96 academic year.

For more information contact Upton at (817) 755-2265.

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