WFU names director to lead entrepreneurship office

By Sarah Mansell
May 7, 2004

Elizabeth J. GatewoodElizabeth J. Gatewood has been named director of the newly created University Office of Entrepreneurship and Liberal Arts at Wake Forest University.

Gatewood comes from Indiana University, where she was the Jack M. Gill Chair of Entrepreneurship and director of The Johnson Center for Entrepreneurship & Innovation. She will lead Wake Forest’s efforts as one of eight Kauffman Campuses nationwide, an honor that included a $2.16 million grant awarded by the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation in December. The grant, which will be matched by university fundraising, will allow Wake Forest to become a model for incorporating entrepreneurship into a liberal arts campus.

Entrepreneur magazine recently named Gatewood one of the top ten entrepreneurship center directors in the country. She has written more than 40 articles, book chapters and monographs on entrepreneurial processes, women entrepreneurs and economic development. She is also a past recipient of the Academy of Management’s Advocate Award for outstanding contributions to the field of entrepreneurship.

Gatewood is a member of the Diana project, a research study of women business owners and equity capital access. She is a graduate of Purdue University where she earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology. She received her master’s in business administration and her doctorate from the University of Georgia.

The university’s five-year plan for the Kauffman grant includes adding new entrepreneurship courses and faculty, funding grants for faculty research, creating a university Center for Entrepreneurship and developing a fifth-year entrepreneurship institute for recent university graduates pursuing new ventures in addition to the establishment of the Office of Entrepreneurship and Liberal Arts.

The new office will draw on the strengths and resources of the university’s College of Arts and Sciences, Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, Calloway School of Business and Accountancy, Babcock Graduate School of Management, School of Medicine and Winston-Salem’s Piedmont Triad Research Park, in which the university is heavily involved.

Program directors for the office have also been named. The university has named Page West, Benson-Pruitt Associate Professor of Business, director of the University Center for Entrepreneurship. Bill Conner, professor of biology, will become program director for curriculum initiatives. Sharon Andrews, associate professor of theatre, will become program director for communications.

The university’s undergraduate entrepreneurship program is ranked 16th among American colleges and universities by U.S. News & World Report. Undergraduate students nominated by the Calloway School have won first place in the Central Atlantic Global Student Entrepreneur Awards twice, in 2001 and 2003. The university has also offered an annual Presidential Scholarship in entrepreneurship for undergraduates since 1987, one of few universities to offer such an award. In addition, Entrepreneur magazine ranks the Babcock School in the nation’s top tier of entrepreneurship programs and first among entrepreneurship faculty.

The Kauffman Foundation has recognized Wake Forest's commitment to entrepreneurship in the past, with grants to support the University Center for Entrepreneurship in the Calloway School and the Babcock School’s Angell Center for Entrepreneurship.

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