The pursuit of entrepreneurialism is a dogged, risky and somewhat sweaty one. For those interested in being educated in the venture, The Princeton Review's annual ranking of the top 25 undergraduate and top 25 graduate entrepreneurship programs offered at U.S. institutions provides a picture of the best places to get schooled.
Babson College tops the grad list for the fourth year in a row.The Babson Park, Mass., school's Arthur M. Blank Center for Entrepreneurship began offering its program in 1967, making it one of the oldest on the list. The University of Houston's Wolff Center for Entrepreneurship comes in at the head of the class for undergraduate programs. Like Babson and many other schools that made the list, the Wolff Center's faculty is comprised entirely of entrepreneurs. The University of Houston also had the highest enrollment, attracting more than 2,000 students for the 2010-11 academic year.
From Chicago to Los Angeles to Chapel Hill, N.C., there's a school for every aspiring, developing or full-fledged entrepreneur. The ranking is compiled from survey data from more than 2,000 colleges and universities and is based on the following questions and methodology.
Academics and requirements:
Schools were asked if they offer an entrepreneurship program, major or minor and to specify the total number of courses offered, as well as the type, such as social entrepreneurship, new-product development and venture capital. Other academic requirements that affect the ranking include the availability of internships, externships, experiential learning and consulting opportunities for small-business owners.
Students and faculty:
For the 2010-11 academic year, the institutions were asked what percentage of the total student body was formally enrolled in their entrepreneurship program and what percentage of the total student body was enrolled in an entrepreneurship-related course. They were also asked what percentage of formally enrolled entrepreneurship students in the most recent graduating class had launched a business since graduating, what percentage of those students are still in business and what percentage of the entrepreneurship faculty had started, bought or run
a successful business.
Outside the classroom:
Schools were asked whether they have partnerships with other schools that allow access to their entrepreneurship program, how many officially recognized clubs and organizations they offer for entrepreneurship students and their budgets for such clubs and organizations. Other questions included how many non-curriculum-based activities and competitions are offered in the area of entrepreneurship, how many officially sponsored mentorship programs are available to entrepreneurship students and what entrepreneurial scholarships are offered.
David Soto, director of content development for The Princeton Review, conducted the survey from December 2010 through May 2011. For even more information, visit PrincetonReview.com/Entrepreneur.