Millennials and the Culture of Entrepreneurship

10.15.2015 Article, BB&T Center, Careers, Entrepreneurship, General, Reynolda Campus, School News

By Juilee Shivalkar, Communications and Marketing Intern
What does it take to truly embrace entrepreneurship? Do the next generation of millennials have the tools necessary to understand their role as entrepreneurs in an evolving world?

That’s what the panel event held October 8 in Broyhill Auditorium at the Wake Forest University School of Business aimed to offer – the tools and advice needed to explore this career choice. Sponsored by the BB&T Center for the Study of Capitalism and the Center for Innovation, Creativity and Entrepreneurship at the University, about 120 students, faculty and staff members from across campus were in attendance.

“The panelists covered different perspectives to give us a holistic view of what entrepreneurship is and what it means to us as millennials,” said Kathryn Wallace (MA ’16).  The event was moderated by Wake Forest Economics Department Chair Dan Hammond, and offered three experts:

·      Saras Sarasvathy, professor of business administration at the Darden School of Business, compared entrepreneurs to scientists discovering new concepts as she explained how innovation can further society and the economy. Her comments focused on collaboration and she urged the audience to build ventures together with coworkers, instead of just considering them to be employees working for a boss.

·      “Entrepreneurs are creative destroyers,” explained Don Boudreaux, an economics professor at George Mason University. From Boudreaux’s perspective, entrepreneurs destroy existing trade paths, technology and jobs, but do this in the service of creating better ones. He suggests that entrepreneurs enable society to offer a higher standard of living.

·      Michael Strong, chief executive officer of FLOW, focused on the importance of socially conscious entrepreneurs. Strong believes economic development can create humanitarian and environmental benefits.  He also suggests that working at a start-up gives entrepreneurs and their teams the chance to do a little bit of everything.

“It was impactful to hear the different definitions that professionals in different careers have on entrepreneurship,” said Jorge Fournier (’18). “And how each of those definitions relates to the idea that an entrepreneur revolutionizes how people do things.”