What Educational Leaders Say about IE
"I'm proud that The University of Texas at Austin is home to the Intellectual Entrepreneurship consortium (IE). Since 1997, the consortium has strived to live out the highest ideals of academic life. Whether helping students find their true passion, exposing first-generation college students to the world of graduate studies, or enabling students to better serve society, the consortium has touched the lives of undergraduates, graduate students, and faculty members in profound ways. I look forward to seeing how this initiative continues to inform our national dialogue about the role of higher education in society, and I encourage the support of this important work."
Bill Powers, President, The University of Texas at Austin
"IE marries two concepts that contemporary higher education has for too long labored to divorce: the life of the mind, the intellect and cool reason with the life of the engaged, committed and impassioned leader and citizen. IE is a movement and a curriculum project, a vision and a plan, a dream and a reality. It is simultaneously elite and inclusive, focused and diverse. It is a vision for higher education that invites institutions and their students to seek out the risk-taking, creativity and uncertainties of connecting our best ideas with our highest ideals to forge an integrated and interconnected community."
Lee S. Shulman, President Emeritus, The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and Charles E. Ducommun Professor of Education Emeritus, Stanford University
"IE is an innovative program,
thoughtfully pursued by someone who has thought hard about how
to make change in a system that all too often resists it. Dean
Cherwitz's initiative deserves the sincerest form of academic flattery:
Donald Kennedy, former Stanford President and Editor of Science
"Unless colleges and universities are to appear as removed from the frontlines of change as the most remote monasteries of the Middle Ages, they must embrace a new entrepreneurial academic culture such as that advanced by Richard Cherwitz and the Intellectual Entrepreneurship Consortium at the University of Texas at Austin. Since becoming the president of Arizona State University, I have similarly sought to reconceptualize a large public institution as an "academic enterprise" that is at once competitive, dynamic, and attuned to the needs both of our constituencies and global society alike. Academic enterprise is at the heart of the foundational model for what we term the "New American University"--an egalitarian institution committed to the topmost echelons of academic excellence, inclusiveness to a broad demographic, and maximum societal impact. The concept of the "citizen-scholar" that the Intellectual Entrepreneurship program advances resonates with our own culture of academic enterprise. The correlations between the Intellectual Entrepreneurship (IE) Consortium at the University of Texas at Austin and our own institutional cultural of academic enterprise at Arizona State University are obvious. The IE initiative should serve as a model for institutions nationwide."
Michael M. Crow, President, Arizona State University.
"IE is right in the center of all that I see as positive about
the role of higher education today and the re-definition of what
it means to be entrepreneurial and civically engaged."
Nancy Cantor, Chancellor, Syracuse University.
"Serving as president/chancellor of five major research universities, I have witnessed firsthand numerous challenges to higher education and a wide array of programs implemented to meet those challenges. I do not exaggerate when I say that The University of Texas' Intellectual Entrepreneurship Consortium (IE) represents one of the best initiatives on education reform. As both a program and philosophy of education, IE has made significant changes to how we think about and deliver education-and it effectively accomplishes this in a manner preserving and bolstering the academic rigor of major research universities. Unlike more extreme calls for reform, IE does not seek to change the mission of research universities. Instead, IE has empowered thousands of students to discover their passion, systematically integrate relevant disciplinary knowledge, and put that knowledge to work for the betterment of themselves and society. Of special note is IE's documented record of increasing diversity at a time when we are searching for race neutral methods for doing so. I applaud IE's philosophy of education ("Discovery, Ownership, and Accountability"), believing it has the potential to shorten students' time to degree and improve the quality of their education in thoughtful ways. My hope is that IE will be imitated by others seeking new and innovative approaches to educating our nation's citizens."
E. Gordon Gee, President, The Ohio State University
"Civic engagement, entrepreneurship and cross disciplinary studies are critical components of higher education in the 21st century, and IE is providing essential and creative leadership to achieve these goals. I applaud this effort."
Mark G. Yudof, President, University of California and former Chancellor, University of Texas System
"UT's Intellectual Entrepreneurship project (IE) is a leader nationally. It provides best practices in promoting diversity in the academy, especially in attracting students to the critical areas of science and technology. IE also leads the way--through mentorship and research--in addressing the challenge of preparing an educated workforce."
John Hennessy, Stanford University President
"The tradition of civic engagement has driven our public universities since their inception. Today, connecting higher education's intellectual pursuits with public needs is more important than ever. Our students, our faculty and staff, our communities, and our greater society all benefit greatly when we apply our knowledge and discoveries to better lives for all. I applaud UT's Intellectual Entrepreneurship (IE) initiative for doing this so successfully."
Sally Mason, President, The University of Iowa
"IE stands out nationally as the model for reenvisioning doctoral education and engaging scholars across the academy"
Earl Lewis, Andrew Mellon Foundation President
"One of the best ways to improve diversity in higher education is to improve education for all students while focusing on each student’s unique strengths, instead of his or her weaknesses. Part of UT’s Division for Diversity and Engagement, the Intellectual Entrepreneurship Consortium (IE) does exactly that. Its crown jewel, the Pre Graduate School Mentorship Program, for example, does this by demystifying higher education and helping students identify and pursue their passions. More than 5,000 UT students have benefitted from IE, and the consortium’s innovative, results-driven approach has been recognized repeatedly, including with the Examples of Excelencia Award and the National Diversity Council’s Diversity FIRST Award. IE’s multidisciplinary approach offers students access to outstanding faculty and resources from throughout the UT community, enhances research and teaching, and improves the relationship between higher education and the rest of society. Whenever I speak to young people, I tell them that I don’t want them to be like me or to match my accomplishments; I want them to be significantly better and to surpass my accomplishments. IE provides students with an excellent foundation to achieve that goal.”
Senator Judith Zaffirini (District 21)
“The Intellectual Entrepreneurship (IE) program is, without a doubt, grooming the next generation of remarkable leaders. This program provides a platform for students to strengthen their skills and build the confidence necessary to succeed in any work environment. The many students in the IE program that go on to further their education or obtain fulfilling roles in the workforce are proof that success is attainable for all people regardless of race, culture, and socioeconomic status. When extraordinary programs like IE provide positive mentorship and the necessary resources, anything is possible.”
Dennis Kennedy, Chair of the National Diversity Council
"As a member of the Texas House of Representatives Committee on Higher Education, I am intimately involved in our state's efforts to increase our college-going population, close the gaps between ethnic and socioeconomic student achievement, and create a 21st century workforce that will ensure our continued growth and prosperity. I am also keenly aware of the need for citizen scholars who value collaborative problem solving and who are engaged in the betterment of their communities. In fact, I am convinced that participation in the political process has the potential to enrich our lives individually and collectively. All of this, though, requires a structure within which the necessary experiences are available to cultivate such outcomes. The Intellectual Entrepreneurship (IE) Consortium in the Division of Diversity & Community Engagement (DDCE) at the University of Texas at Austin is exactly the type of laboratory that is successfully producing results: creating citizen scholars who are given the opportunity to link their passions with their academic pursuits in a multidisciplinary collaboration in order to affect positive change in their communities. And, in mirroring the changing demographics of Texas, the vast majority of the IE students are minorities, first-to-attend college, and/or low-income students. IE is a model of success that links rigor and relevance, town and gown, as well as theory and real-world experience. What a difference this can make in the lives of these students and also in the future of our great state."
Donna Howard, Texas House of Representatives (District 48)
"Here is an educational program I wish other institutions would emulate. As stated in some of its materials, Intellectual Entrepreneurship (IE) is both a program and a philosophy of education. As a philosophy, its objective is to educate citizen scholars-individuals able to leverage their knowledge for social good. As a collection of programs, IE provides curriculum and academic-community experiences enabling students to discover what they are passionate about, devise concrete plans to bring their visions to fruition, and in so doing own and become accountable for their education. But, to me, the most important part of this program to the well- being of this nation is its attempt to address the issue of increasing the number of underrepresented minorities, first-generation, or economically disadvantaged students by assisting them in determining what they wish to do following graduation, especially whether they wish to pursue graduate education. For example, of the spring 2013 IE cohort one third were classified as Hispanic, compared to a university-wide percentage of 18. Similarly, although only 4.5 per cent of University of Texas students who were classified as African American, 16 per cent of IE students were from an African American background. Imagine if these figures were replicated across America. My hat is off to the IE program. Continue your good work as a role model for what institutions can do if they have a will to do so. To paraphrase Vince Lombardi - 'the difference between a success and fail is not a lack KNOWLEDGE, but rather a LACK of WILL.'"
Dr. Lovell A. Jones, Biochemistry & Molecular Biology Professor, U.T. Distinguished Teaching Professor at The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, Co-Founder of the Intercultural Cancer Council, and Director of the Dorothy I. Height Center for Health Equity and Evaluation Research (DH-CHEER)
"Intellectual Entrepreneurship (IE) is a way for research universities to reach their fullest potential. Complex problems call for an interdisciplinary approach, bringing diverse ideas and perspectives to the table--just as IE does at UT".
University of North Carolina Chancellor Holden Thorp
"The field of higher education is going through a major transformation as we are being called to prepare graduates who can lead in a global arena where the only constant is change. We are fortunate that the Intellectual Entrepreneurship (IE) Consortium has provided us with an exceptional model for producing graduates who will be ready to serve in this leadership role. The Consortium helps institutions to live up to the promise of helping all students, including first generation students and students of color, find their passion and become entrepreneurs in bringing about innovative solutions to address our global needs. I greatly support the work of the IE Consortium and encourage others to be part of this exceptional initiative. If we as a society want to see this transformation lead towards greater good, then we must remain committed towards supporting the Consortium as it fulfills its mission."
Ricardo Romo, President, University of Texas at San Antonio
"As a member of the UT Board of Regents overseeing 15 campuses, and someone genuinely interested in constructive innovations in higher education, I am a true fan of UT's Intellectual Entrepreneurship Consortium (IE). For over 15 years, IE has proven that it is possible to implement significant educational reforms at top-tier universities without diluting or altering their research mission. In fact, IE has enhanced that mission by engaging students in research and then helping them leverage their knowledge for social good. In the words of its founder and director, Professor Rick Cherwitz, IE "educates citizen-scholars." I am especially impressed with IE's unique capacity to increase diversity-especially in an era where race neutral programs may become the norm-by providing all students with opportunities to discover their passion and then directly connect their education to personal, career and professional aspirations. At a time when parents, legislators, and governing boards search for ways to create more "bang for the buck" in higher education, IE is a model worth imitating. It comes as no surprise to me that so many university chancellors and presidents across the country enthusiastically endorse IE. To their voices I add my own and encourage the support of all those desiring our nation's great universities to educate more students able to address society's complex challenges and meet the country's workforce needs."
R. Steven "Steve" Hicks, Vice Chairman of the University of Texas System Board of Regents, Chairman of the Academic Affairs Committee, and owner/Executive Chairman of Capstar Partners, LLC.
"The new concept of graduate study, though,
is not about jobs as much as it is about the application of knowledge
for the benefit of society. And that is nowhere plainer than in
the groundbreaking Intellectual Entrepreneurship Program begun
at The University of Texas at Austin graduate school under the
direction of Richard Cherwitz. The stated goal, to produce 'citizen-scholars'
by enabling students to decide how best to contribute their expertise
and in what particular venues, takes us a long way past the narcissistic
old notion of professors using the Ph.D. to create clone-slaves.
Best, it is not an add-on, not a mere enhancement, but about 'helping
students to discover their discipline and their value,' about 'harnessing
intellectual energy and talent' and creating 'connections between
the academy and the public and private sectors.' I think UT's Intellectual
Entrepreneurship Program is a great model of what you can do in
doctoral education. They have done the best job in the country."
Dr. Robert Weisbuch, President, Drew University and formerly President of the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation
"IE Synergy Groups will be a valuable asset to our community as they bring UT students together with non-profits and government entities outside of the UT Campus to work on important local issues. Bringing a fresh perspective and a practiced understanding of academic research and problem-solving methods, UT students can serve as an important resource and, through their service, gain insight on developing collaborative solutions to the challenges in our community."
Lloyd Doggett, US House of Representatives (25th District of Texas)
"It is a pleasure to see a program like Intellectual Entrepreneurship (IE) that catalyzes students and faculty to move across the disciplines and out into the world."
Robert Klitgaard, President and University Professor, Claremont Graduate University
"The Intellectual Entrepreneurship Consortium
(IE) at the University of
Texas represents the type of academic innovations that we so desperately
need in higher education today. Professor Cherwitz has conceptualized
cutting edge program that enhances student (graduate and undergraduate)
engagement and scholarly research. His work brings timely, creative
dimensions to the academy at a time when we are trying to develop
future professoriate. Every major research institution of higher
in the U.S. should have this program."
Dr. Joseph Martin Stevenson, Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, Jackson State University
"Much of today's higher education reform discussion emphasizes student deficits and remedial education, but IE builds on students' strengths and focuses on demystifying the pursuit of higher education, stimulating student curiosity, and increasing engaged learning. IE provides the means for students and faculty to pursue critical questions, unlimited by the traditional boundaries of disciplines and degree programs, and search for real answers to improve our world. By recognizing scholarship can serve society while enhancing the academy, IE appeals to students who are committed to serving their communities. Look at the large number of Latino students drawn to doctoral education through the IE Pre Graduate Internship and you see the power and promise IE offers higher education. It's a model that works and it is time for other colleges and universities to adapt it."
Sarita E. Brown, Excelencia in Education President, Washington DC
"IE effectively brings the focus of undergraduate and graduate study onto the society that has made that study possible. It is a sound method to insure that the full value of education is realized."
Richard Lariviere, President of the Field Museum and Former President, University of Oregon
"Celebrating diversity, interdisciplinary collaboration, and innovation across the entirety of the academic community is essential if universities are to fulfill their fundamental mission of public service. That is the approach embraced by the Intellectual Entrepreneurship consortium. Educators who work with IE are reminded that the role of the university is not simply to teach, but also to serve as an agent for change. The work of the consortium is succeeding in developing citizen-scholars and offers a helpful guide for institutions of higher education seeking to expand partnerships between the academy and society."
Lee C. Bollinger, Columbia University President
"Rick Cherwitz and IE are on to something. He understands that
students -- they and their careers -- are different today than they were
forty years ago. They show up more able to leverage the vast resources
of co-located silos of information that Universities represent. They
know that static curriculum lags reality. IE creates problem solvers,
the most precious form of human capital in the world today."
Paul W. Hobby, CEO, Alpheus Communications, Inc. and Managing Partner, Genesis Park LP
"Intellectual entrepreneurship is the strongest program I know for bringing bright minds through the eye of the needle and into the world with plenty of passion and smart personal perspective. The individual's sense of the value of knowledge and critical personal participation in the search for solutions to today's challenges, both local and global, are what makes that young person's knowledge actionable. When this happens, its a gift to society as much as to the student--everybody wins. We need citizen scholars! I am hoping to take this model overseas to projects I'm working on with the Aspen Institute and our US State Department. With cheers for this dialogue and courageous work!"
John Cimino, Director of Creative Leaps International and Founding President and CEO of Associated Solo Artists
"By working with experts at other
companies, universities, and research institutes, we tap a wider
range of expertise, capabilities, and resources. We believe open
innovation will fuel the intellectual entrepreneurship and novel
collaborations across institutions and geographies needed to
develop solutions to some of the world's most critical healthcare
challenges and to directly address patient needs in both developed
and emerging economies. In turn, these solutions will provide
the economic entrepreneurship that will help spur recovery and,
when combined with health diplomacy, will ensure that innovation
delivers solutions for generations to come."
Dr. Paul Stoffels, Company Group Chairman of Pharmaceutical Research and Development at Johnson & Johnson
"The IE agenda epitomizes how higher education should provide the place and context for changing how we educate...and who we educate. Rick Cherwitz has used multiple avenues to elevate the discussion about access and opportunity through the immersion and engagement of students, faculty,
and administrators in "real world" issues. The timing for IE's expansion could not be better; society is clamoring for citizen-scholars."
Dr. Leroy D. Nunery, II, Deputy Superintendent, School District of Philadelphia and former President, Edison Charter Schools
"UT [Intellectual Entrepreneurship Program]
has the most innovative and forward-thinking program for graduate
professional development not only in the nation, but maybe in the
Dr. Peter Fiske, Founder and CEO of RAPT Industries and formerly an Experimental Physicist at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory
"For universities, town-gown relationships have always been a
challenge. Too often, both community and campus miss the remarkable
opportunity for human good that can come from productive interaction.
UT Austin's Intellectual Entrepreneurship Consortium takes solid, deeply
rooted academic and artistic disciplines into the public arena in a
creative way we have not seen before."
Bryce Jordan, President Emeritus, Penn State University
"University of Texas' Intellectual Entrepreneurship
Program is a model for campuses across the country that seek to
integrate civic engagement into arts and humanities education."
Mary Sue Coleman, President of the University of Michigan
"I am intrigued by the concept of the Intellectual Entrepreneurship Program, which aims to develop "citizen scholars"- highly educated men and women who will use knowledge in the service of our nation and our society. To meet this goal through a curriculum that emphasizes multidisciplinary, interdisciplinary and even transdisciplinary teaching and learning is an innovation that is long overdue on the American campus. In our increasingly complex world, flooded with more information and data than any single human being can process, one of the great challenges to higher education is to provide synthesis and systemic perspectives while helping students develop the skills to carry on a process of lifelong learning. Meeting that challenge is the promise inherent in the IE program, and I look forward to celebrating its accomplishments in the years ahead."
Vartan Gregorian, President, Carnegie Corporation of New York
"The Intellectual Entrepreneurship (IE) Consortium
at the University of
Texas under the direction of Professor Cherwitz is exactly what is
in today's academy. This program empowers students to educate themselves
in ways that lead directly to solutions to our nation's problems.
that students and professors can be entrepreneurs is exactly right.
time to take our accumulated knowledge base and, in the case of
life-scientists, do what we say we will in our grants: give back
things as diagnostics and vaccines and not just exist as Ivory Tower
Dwellers. It is time that we take seriously what it means to be a
Scholar and do more, much more, with and for our communities. Bravo
Professor Cherwitz for a program that is attracting under-represented
minorities to higher education in ways that other programs have not
John F. Alderete, Professor of Microbiology and Immunology, University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, former President of the Society for Advancement of Chicano and Native American Scientists (SACNAS), and inventor of the point-of-care diagnostic for the number one STD Trichomonas vaginalis.
"We at Michigan State University have closely observed and admired the evolution of the IE agenda. The confluence of research, teaching, and community involvement helps students become engaged entrepreneurs, linking knowledge obtained from across the disciplines with opportunities to serve as intellectual catalysts for change. This 'active application' of knowledge to improve lives is at the core of our shared vision of higher education."
Lou Anna Simon, President, Michigan State University
"Intellectual Entrepreneurship (IE) stands
as a model and is the benchmark
for us to use in graduate education. Dr. Cherwitz's work has made
effective change to the status quo of graduate education, taking
it to new
levels. His work has made a difference and is transforming the lives
our next citizen scholars. IE is creative, innovative and makes great
Maureen Grasso, Graduate School Dean, University of Georgia
"IE is providing a model to marshal the enormous resources
of education in
this country to address business and social needs. It also is training
new generation of intellectuals prepared to lead in an engaged,
entrepreneurial 21st century world."
James L. Applegate, Senior Vice President, Lumina Foundation and former Vice President for Academic Affairs, Council on Postsecondary Education
"I am an intellectual entrepreneur."
Henry Louis Gates, Jr., W.E.B. Du Bois Professor of the Humanities, Chair of the Department of Afro-American Studies, Director of the W.E.B. Du Bois Institute for Afro-American Research, Harvard University
"In revising the curriculum to prepare 21st-century students for 21st-century realities, higher education also must develop an appreciation of and demonstrate a major commitment to what the University of Texas at Austin professor Richard Cherwitz defines as "intellectual entrepreneurship." This involves creating synergistic relations among academic disciplines and between intellectuals on and off campus: to make seamless connections among disciplines and between the academy and the public and private sectors. Intellectual entrepreneurship is about harnessing, integrating, and productively utilizing intellectual energy and talent wherever it is located-in order to promote academic, cultural, political, social, and economic change. By developing and fostering intellectual entrepreneurship, administrators,
faculty, and students will not only gain a greater understanding of the forces that shape the world but also become one of the new agents of change. Such a focus is likely to be highly attractive to the traditional college-age population in the future. As research has shown, many of these students will come from economically disadvantaged backgrounds and/or communities. Cherwitz argues-correctly in our view-that training in intellectual entrepreneurship will "empower [these] students to discover otherwise unobserved connections between academe and personal and professional commitments." This training will also facilitate students' abilities to solve problems and effect change in their own communities and beyond. In short, this shift toward intellectual entrepreneurship will enable colleges and universities to create the next and succeeding generations of both traditional entrepreneurs in business venturing and a cadre of social and civic entrepreneurs who are committed to using their talents to make meaningful change in the nonprofit and government sectors."
James H. Johnson, Jr., William Rand Kenan, Jr. Distinguished Professor and Director, Urban Investment Strategies Center Frank Hawkins Kenan Institute of Private Enterprise, Kenan-Flagler Business School, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
"Our IENGAGE program (the goal of which is to encourage an intellectual focus that connects students and faculty with the University, the local community and society), is modeled after UT-Austin's Intellectual Entrepreneurship (IE) initiative. You know what they say about imitation and flattery. Like IE, The I Engage philosophy recognizes that knowledge is intellectual capital that educated persons can invest to address and solve problems found outside of the formal classrooms and textbooks. By contributing skills and knowledge in service of academic, social, cultural and entrepreneurial needs, engagement encourages the sense that the full expression of scholarship is an empowering, vital agency and it engenders an appreciation of one's potential to make positive contributions to one's profession and one's society. Programs and funding opportunities exist for both students and faculty under the IEngage umbrella."
Philip Cohen, Vice Provost for Academic Affairs and Dean of the Graduate School, UT-Arlington
"The best teachers and researchers are
all 'intellectual entrepreneurs.' They're in the business of creating
new information, new ways of thinking, new ways of seeing their
particular discipline. A biomedical researcher working on the latest
vaccine, a political scientist establishing a new way of looking
at studying political processes, and a young musician figuring
out how to create his or her path through the art world are every
bit as entrepreneurial as someone establishing a new business."
Thomas Jackson, President of the University of Rochester
"IE has enormous implications for an
intellectually rich public university like UT to assume a critical
role as a public servant and institutional citizen. The solutions
to huge social issues do not fit neatly into one box (one discipline).
These challenges require people who have been trained to think
as 'intellectual entrepreneurs.'"
Roberta Shaffer, Director of External Relations and Program Development, College of Information Studies, University of Maryland
"Professor Cherwitz and UT 's Intellectual Entrepreneurship Consortium (IE) have been bringing entrepreneurial principles and practices to learning for years and with an extremely high rate of success. But they have done so with an important and compelling twist. Through IE students work in interdisciplinary teams to work on real world solutions in the community in real time with measurable and highly compelling outcomes-all of this while still fully immersed in their university education. There is no attempt to impose knowledge on how to become an entrepreneur. They simply practice it and consequently bring the university into full collaboration with other sectors. Having been in higher education administration for 30 years, I can attest to the fact that the IE approach not only is innovative, but it also is revolutionary. It demonstrates that these big battleships -- America's large research universities -- can indeed be turned in new strategic directions. More important, IE is a vehicle for concentrating the enormous collective brainpower of students and faculty on matters of clear societal concern. This is a serious breakthrough."
Johnnie Ray, Associate Vice President for University Advancement at the University of Colorado, and former Vice President for Resource Development at UT
"IE is a concept that empowers the intellectual entrepreneurial student with significant control over the education they want and need. It overcomes the evolved bureaucracy and calcified procedures that resist change and innovation within higher education. It is not often popular with faculty members and administrators to propose change to the way things are being done, but it is out of change that new ways of looking at old methods and assumptions emerge. Norman Hackerman, former President of UT, once said: 'We have to stop educating people for one profession and start educating them for five or six changes in their professions over their lifetimes.' Professor Cherwitz has recognized the truth in that observation and has tirelessly sought to provide new university education systems that enable that sort of lifetime coping preparation of students. In so doing, he has brought attention and credit to the University as a leader in innovative thinking and action on this subject."
Curtis Meadows Jr., Emeritus Director of the Meadows Foundation, Chair of the advisory council for the LBJ School's RGK Center for Philanthropy and Community Service and Founding Executive Director of the LBJ School's RGK Center for Philanthropy and Community Service.
"IE takes the bold step of positioning graduate education, particularly at the doctoral level, beyond traditional academic and research boundaries. It communicates the belief that the life of the mind can be a commodity of entrepreneurial value to graduate degree holders. The IE initiative has been one of the most innovative developments in education...it is truly
"Drs. Cherwitz, O'Donnell, Gee, Crow and Thorp have it right!!! Taxpayers, benefactors, and governments among others are rightly expecting--and increasingly demanding--universities and colleges to be more than diploma mills that produce graduates who have little commitment to the public good. Because of the vast explosion of knowledge in our country and the world, as well as the complexity associated with understanding and addressing many, if not most, human issues and concerns, higher education institutions must absolutely reorganize themselves around themes, ideas and centers of knowledge.
The Intellectual Entrepreneurship concept achieves two significant goals--(1) it produces graduates who understand their value in making our communities better places in which to live and (2) its graduates acquire an education that values the blurring of borders between and within traditional disciplines and institutional structures! This should be a model for all of higher education--undergraduate, graduate and professional!"
Orlando Taylor, President of The Chicago School of Professional Psychology and former VP for Research and Graduate Dean, Howard University
“I would like to commend the educational impact of UT's Intellectual Entrepreneurship Consortium (IE). This program has created unprecedented opportunity and success led by the extraordinary leadership of Dr. Rick Cherwitz (recipient of the National Diversity Council DiversityFirst Award). It is imperative to emphasize the unique focus this program has had with first generation and underrepresented students by engaging their passions and desire to contribute to the community and our nation. In order to improve the diversity pipeline in the workplace we need to improve the number of diverse students successfully completing higher education. The IE Consortium is the vehicle that will allow students to find their purpose and focus on their individual strengths to succeed. It is in this foundation that they all have an opportunity to reach their goals.”
Angeles Valenciano, Chief Executive Officer of the National Diversity Council
"Rick Cherwitz's program has torn down
the iron curtain between learning and living, between the campus
and the community. He recognizes that their is not a single real
problem that a single discipline could claim to study, much less
solve. The real problems of community, society, and the world lie
between and among the disciplines. He works to educate graduates
for the world not academe."
Joseph C. Burke, Director of the Rockefeller Institute's Higher Education Program and State University Professor of Higher Education Policy and Management (SUNY)
"The Intellectual Entrepreneurship Program
has the potential to model a new method of problem-solving for
communities and institutions. Through action-oriented learning,
students will empower themselves and their communities to seek
Kristin Gossett, Executive Director of the Austin Idea Network
"The process of refining the entrepreneurship
concept has been driven one step further by the development of
the notion of Intellectual Entrepreneurship and the pioneering
work of Richard Cherwitz, Professor of Communication and Rhetoric
at the University of Texas at Austin. IE is founded upon: forming
partnerships with the community to solve problems and identify
opportunities; cross disciplinary interaction in recognition that
'a university's collective wisdom is its most precious asset';
and academics as change agents embodying notions of breaking down
barriers between research and development focused upon making contributions
to the community as opposed purely to the discipline. This seems
to be a view increasingly adopted in the US, and in particular
by leading foundations. The concepts of 'Intellectual Entrepreneurship'
and of the 'citizen scholar' present a visionary challenge to the
Higher Education sector."
Allan Gibb, Professor Emeritus University of Durham
National Council for Graduate Entrepreneurship
"One of the most compelling challenges faced by research universities in the 21st century is the obligation to serve society. A 2004 NAS report called for increased commitment to interdisciplinary, socially relevant research, recognizing that today's social challenges require research solutions that challenge traditional disciplines and university structures. Increased commitment to socially relevant research and to the articulation of its public benefits may not only help to leverage academe's intellectual capital to the benefit of society; it might also attract more talented U.S. students who currently choose nonacademic paths to give back to their communities and society. A heightened commitment to socially relevant research may even improve the quality of graduate learning. In the words of Benjamin Franklin, 'Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I will learn.' One model for advancing socially relevant research is the Intellectual Entrepreneurship (IE) program pioneered at the University of Texas at Austin. Students in the program are educated to become citizen scholars by using their skills and knowledge in a real-world setting and preparing for a career in all sectors of the economy. This program differs from typical community outreach and professional development initiatives in that it emphasizes cross-disciplinary scholarship and learning. The success of the IE program at the Austin campus derives from a critical group of faculty members who view themselves as citizen scholars-researchers who break the traditional boundaries between disciplines as well as between theoretical knowledge and the broader world."
Council of Graduate Schools (CGS), "Graduate Education: The Backbone of American Competitiveness and Innovation."
"When I asked my students, "Do you
feel that your Hopkins degree carries with it a responsibility
for you to eventually serve America in some way?" more than
half said "no." It would seem that Woodrow Wilson's educational
ideals are languishing--and yet there are hopeful signs at many
schools. For example, his "In the Nation's Service" mantra
has been taken up today by Richard Cherwitz at the University of
Texas at Austin, whose Intellectual Entrepreneurship initiative
encourages faculty to be "citizen-scholars-- researchers supplying
more than narrow, theoretical disciplinary knowledge." Cherwitz
stresses "the obligation of universities to serve society" yet
points out that specialized and "theorized" graduate
curricula are often irrelevant to "pressing public problems" and
promote a never-ending culture of narrowness as students ape their
highly focused advisors. Those students should instead take the
reins like self-motivated young entrepreneurs, Cherwitz argues,
and demand that their expensive graduate educations train them
broadly and sanely for jobs inside the academy or out--not specialization,
but general training for useful service to society. Surely the
first Intellectual Entrepreneur graduate student was Woodrow Wilson
at Johns Hopkins, the day he declared, "I want to be near
the world. I want to know the world"! In a biting 1885 speech
to the Hopkins Literary Society, a debate club he helped form for
the undergraduates, he lamented the fact that oratory and clear
speech were languishing at a place "where exact knowledge
overcrows everything else and the art of persuasion is neglected
on principle." He concluded pessimistically, "Oratory
must be full of the spirit of the world: that spirit is excluded
from University life." That worldly spirit is the one Cherwitz
seeks to re-instill today."
W. Barksdale Maynard, Department of the History of Art, Johns Hopkins University