Virtual gathering draws Penn State entrepreneurship educators

September 18, 2020

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Faculty and staff from across Penn State recently came together for a virtual gathering in support of entrepreneurship teaching and learning. The eighth annual Entrepreneurship Educators Gathering, hosted on Sept. 11 by the Center for Penn State Student Entrepreneurship, is typically held at the University Park campus but was held online this year given the continued need for social distancing.

A record 90 faculty and staff members from colleges and campuses across Penn State attended the event, which featured a keynote address, workshops and panel discussions aimed at supporting Penn State’s growing interdisciplinary community of entrepreneurship educators.

Anne Hoag, associate professor of communications, who serves as director of the Center for Penn State Student Entrepreneurship and who led the event, said that she was pleased with the energy the gathering generated.

“Penn State’s community of entrepreneurship and innovation educators is spread across so many disciplines. Our annual gathering is our best opportunity to connect, learn and share,” said Hoag. “This year was especially about learning and stretching so we can all be stronger E&I teachers with respect to diversity, equity and inclusion and teaching and learning with technology. I hope the conversations we started today will inspire our collective work in the year ahead.”

A screenshot image of Anne Hoag

Anne Hoag, associate professor of communications and director of the Center for Penn State Student Entrepreneurship.

IMAGE: Penn State

The event opened with a welcome message from Penn State President Eric Barron, who affirmed the importance of entrepreneurship education to the Penn State student experience.

“The mindset of the entrepreneur innovator builds confidence and is vital to the future career success of our students,” Barron said. “Entrepreneurship programming is the place that can often spark an interest that lasts a lifetime. The fact is, many students who engage in your entrepreneurship programs are discovering their future careers; this education is changing the course of student lives.”

Barron’s message was followed by a keynote address entitled “Thinking through Entrepreneurship Education with a DEI Lens,” by Tehama Lopez Bunyasi, assistant professor in the Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter School for Peace and Conflict Resolution at George Mason University. Lopez Bunyasi spoke about what a DEI lens can add to entrepreneurship education and offered skills educators can use to become more intentional about DEI in the classroom. She posed questions such as, “Whom does the marketplace center, and whom does it push to the margins?” and “What happens when we think of marginalized groups such as the Amish or the Black Panther Party as entrepreneurs, and what can we learn from their examples of ingenuity?"

A screenshot image of Lopez Benyasi.

Tehama Lopez Bunyasi, assistant professor in the Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter School for Peace and Conflict Resolution at George Mason University, delivered the keynote address.

IMAGE: Penn State

Following the keynote address, the event offered a series of workshops and panels, including:

  • “Teaching Entrepreneurship with Adobe Xd and Other TLT/Media Commons Software and Services,” led by Nicole Cingolani, Tyler Greer and Dan Getz from Teaching and Learning with Technology
  • “Online Entrepreneurship Teaching with Mintel and other Libraries Databases,” led by Sara Hess from University Libraries
  • “Did You Know? The Six Penn State Academic Entrepreneurship Programs,” led by Donna Bon, Altoona LaunchBox; Jeanette Miller, Smeal College of Business; Allan Lehman, Penn State York; and Anne Hoag
  • “Engaging Students outside the Classroom: 2020-2021; Co-curricular Organizations, Events, Competitions, and Resources,” led by Bob Morgan, Bellisario College of Communications; David Norloff, Bellisario College of Communications; Jason Huber, Happy Valley LaunchBox; and Brad Zdenek, Nittany AI Alliance

Members of the Penn State community can view a video recording of the event, including the keynote address and any of the workshops or panels listed above, by visiting this link.

Questions about the recording or event resources can be directed to Kitty MacKenzie at

The Center for Penn State Student Entrepreneurship is part of Penn State Undergraduate Education, the academic administrative unit that provides leadership and coordination for University-wide programs and initiatives in support of undergraduate teaching and learning at Penn State. Learn more about Undergraduate Education at

Last Updated April 15, 2021