Many engineering programs stress the importance of technological innovation by offering entrepreneurship electives and programs. Integration of entrepreneurship into the required engineering curriculum has predominantly focused on senior capstone design courses. This paper describes a strategy for integrating entrepreneurship into a multidisciplinary sophomore-level design course. This early introduction provides an opportunity for students to further pursue their entrepreneurial ideas through a junior/senior level, project-based course.
The Rowan Sophomore Engineering Clinics are integrated courses in which engineering design is taught concurrently with technical communication. This paper describes two entrepreneurial assignments that have been integrated into the Sophomore Clinics: a white paper, and an open-ended semester long design experience in which students propose their own entrepreneurial projects. The projects appear to lead to increased interest in entrepreneurship among students, as indicated by survey results and by an increase in students choosing to pursue entrepreneurial projects as juniors and seniors. While the Sophomore Clinic structure is unique to Rowan University, the entrepreneurial assignments themselves are readily adaptable to other engineering programs.