Entrepreneurship program delivers experiential learning to global audience

The JCU entrepreneurship program and IT team are collaborating to spread entrepreneurship education around the world through a unique experiential program. 

The entrepreneurship program has been at the forefront of experiential education for almost a decade, and the COVID-19 pandemic pushed JCU’s Dr. Doan Winkel, the John J. Kahl, Sr. Endowed Chair in Entrepreneurship, to experiment with different ways of sharing his pedagogical approach with educators.

As part of the TeachingEntrepreneurship.org (TE.org) Summer Summit, Dr. Winkel, conducted a live entrepreneurship exercise in JCU’s Burton D. Morgan Foundation Entrepreneurship and Creativity classroom. 

Nearly 350 professors from more than 100 countries attended the TE.org Summer Summit! They observed and interacted with Winkel and JCU students via Zoom and a Double robot that Winkel’s TE.org cofounder, Justin Wilcox, was driving around the classroom from his home in California.

Professional development for entrepreneurship educators usually happens through passive learning at annual conferences or a variety of webinars and online courses. These formats are woefully inadequate, so Winkel, Wilcox, and another TE.org cofounder, Federico Mammano, decided to create an interactive experience in one classroom from which teachers anywhere in the world could learn through live observation. 

As one teacher mentioned, “I loved watching other teachers and students — it is the best way for me to learn.” Another shared that, “The live [demonstration] was invaluable, even down to room arrangement.”

Chetan Kapoor, JCU’s Director of Instructional Technology, worked tirelessly to build a seamless technological experience for the international audience. The TE.org team is at the forefront of experiential learning, but they are always pushing the envelope to empower more educators to deliver a richer learning experience to students around the globe. 

One of the JCU entrepreneurship students observed that, “[The students participating] seemed to take the class more seriously. I could tell there was a lot more energy in the room than in most of my classes. I think it was because we knew people from around the world were watching. It made me pay more attention, and I really enjoyed the experience!”