The education of an entrepreneur may begin in the classroom, but it's often the educational environment that determines how well-rounded a program truly is--and what it can help entrepreneurial-minded students achieve.
That's why The Princeton Review's annual ranking of undergraduate and graduate programs in entrepreneurship surveys the entire landscape of entrepreneurship programs--from externships and faculty credentials to business plan competitions, affiliated organizations and other critical components. The result is a comprehensive ranking of the top 25 undergraduate and 25 graduate programs, determined by survey data from more than 2,000 institutions. The ranking is based on the following questions and methodology:
Academics and requirements: Schools were asked if they offer an entrepreneurship major or minor and to specify the courses offered, such as e-business, social entrepreneurship or international entrepreneurship. Other academic requirements--internships, experiential learning and consulting for small-business owners, for example--also affect a school's ranking.
Students and faculty: Schools were asked what percentage of their total student body was formally enrolled in their entrepreneurship program for the 2009-2010 academic year and what percentage of their total student body was enrolled in an entrepreneurship-related course for the 2009-2010 academic year. They also were 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, and how many officially recognized clubs and organizations they offer for entrepreneurship students. They were also asked how many non-curriculum-based activities and competitions they offer in the area of entrepreneurship, as well as how many officially sponsored mentorship programs they have for entrepreneurship students. They also were surveyed about their entrepreneurial scholarship offerings.
David Soto, director of content development for The Princeton Review, conducted the survey from December 2009 through May 2010.